Different Healthy Ways to Drink Green and White Tea
Green and white teas have amazing health benefits, but sometimes you might crave a little extra sweetness or zing. Here's some ideas to try - and some of them even add extra health benefits as well as flavour!
Mix some apple juice with some freshly made plain green or white tea – the apple juice will cool down the green tea (hot liquid can damage a blender or smoothie-maker) and use this as the ‘base’ liquid of a fruit smoothie. Put the green tea-apple juice mixture in the blender and then add the soft fruits you’re using to make the smoothie – strawberries and blueberries make a lovely red sweet smoothie; mango and grape makes a fresh and tangy one. Adding half a soft, ripe avocado to any smoothie will stop it being too frothy without affecting the flavour very much, and if you always use ripe soft fruits you will get a really smooth smoothie, even if you use a mid- or low-range blender.
If you quite like the taste of green tea but find it a little weak-tasting, try concentrating on the ‘hidden’ taste – something that is more a feeling in the mouth than a true flavour. It’s a sort of almost ‘oily’ feel that gives the drink a fullness. Also, try a few different varieties of green tea – and maybe some of the loose-leaf, high-grade ones: if you’re not sure where to get high-grade loose-leaf green and white tea, here’s a review of my favourite online teashops.
Add Honey for Sweetness
If you want to add a little sweet spot to your tea, but don’t want to pile in the processed sugar, add a teaspoon of honey. Health-food stores usually have a selection of different varieties that can have amazing flavours just because the bees the honey comes from pollinated different flowers. Some have a menthol undertone from eucalyptus trees; others taste extraordinarily like toffee. And all of them are completely unprocessed and natural. ‘Active’ Manuka honey from New Zealand even claims health benefits of its own!
Add Lemon for Health and a little Extra Zing
Lemon or lime added to green or white tea gives it a beautiful ‘Zing!’, and it research has also shown that all the fabulous health-giving nutrients in tea are more easily absorbed by your body if tea is drunk with anything containing vitamin C.
Add a little mint
Sprinkling a few mint leaves into your cup of green tea will give it a subtle, barely-there flavour. If you use loose-leaf tea, try adding the mint leaves to the tea leaves in the jug or pot and adding the hot water so that your mint and tea brew together for a soft mingling of flavours. Mint can be very strong, though, so you might want to try just adding a very small amount to test whether this is the taste for you.
Iced Tea with crushed ice or cubes, lemon, mint and a touch of honey
Add ice cubes or crushed ice to a glass of hot tea, squeeze in a little fresh lemon and add a touch of honey, and garnish with a couple of whole mint leaves for a long cool summer drink. The antioxidants in tea degrade quite quickly, which is why I used ice to cool the tea rather than refrigerating it for a couple of hours - but leaving the whole drink in the freezer for ten minutes will let the ice do its work without damaging the tea too much.
Fruit Salad Iced Tea
For a different take on the classic fruit smoothie, chop up a few strawberries and throw in a couple of raspberries to iced green tea drink above, for a colourful flair and a sweet berry flavour. For white tea, which has a cooler taste, chop up a few grapes instead, and throw in a couple of small mango chunks.