Tea

Rambling about tea! I made this blend, which lives in tea jail because it’s got such an intense smell.

I also wanted to take a minute to plug my own┬áblends, because they’ve become a delicious staple in our lives, and they’re a really fun way to try to explore characterization when they’re made for a fandom. Astrid Farnsworth, for example, I wanted to be light, sweet, and complicated, and I’m pretty sure I hit the mark: we’ve been drinking a lot of it.

Raspberry Hot Chocolate

Hot chocolate makes for cozy autumn and winter nights, and one way to make it even more cozy is to add booze.

Ingredients:

  • milk
  • dark chocolate bar
  • raspberry liqueur

Melt the chocolate in milk over low heat. Divvy it up into mugs, and then add liqueur. Half a shot per mug, probably. You’re adding the alcohol once it’s heated so the alcohol part doesn’t cook off, since the boiling point of ethanol is like 35┬░F lower than the boiling point of milk, so it might end up merely flavored without you noticing.

Not that you want to heat the milk to boiling – it’ll scald. But whatever: it’s not rocket science, but it is delicious.

Iced Tea

Iced tea is a summer staple. It’s easy enough to make from a mix, but like everything else tea-related, it’s better if you use the good stuff.

Generally I use about a third again as much tea as I would for hot tea, because I usually have it with ice. Make it in a teapot, then pour into a pitcher and add sugar until it’s the sweetness you like: sugar dissolves a lot more easily when it’s warm, so a little effort now saves more later.

As for the pitcher, I’ve got a borosilicate glass one, so it deals really well with temperature changes. If you’ve only got a plastic pitcher, you probably want to wait until your tea is closer to room temperature.

Chill in the fridge, and drink by the gallon.

Hot Chocolate

I’ve read a couple of times that hot chocolate is very different from hot cocoa, so I wanted to test it out. I read a couple recipes first, and so tried it roughly based on the seemingly Accepted Formula:

Ingredients:

  • 2 ounces (half a standard box) of semi-sweet baking chocolate
  • bit of vanilla
  • some sugar
  • sprinkle of salt
  • half a thing of milk – enough for three coffee mugs

And you’re supposed to heat that on medium and whisk it. I just stuck it on medium low and stirred it every couple minutes. It ends up different than hot cocoa – maybe a little richer? Idk. It develops a thin skin on top a little faster.

But the super cool result of this was the realization that I don’t need to mix anything for delicious hot chocolate. Baking chocolate needs sugar because it’s too bitter to eat on its own, and vanilla and sugar just make everything better and baking chocolate won’t have it included. So for delicious hot chocolate that tastes exactly like your favorite chocolate bar:

Ingredients:

  • milk
  • your favorite chocolate bar (an ounce per cup seems like the right ratio?)

Just melt your favorite chocolate bar in milk on medium-low. Like, that’s it. Your favorite chocolate bar is now drinkable. You’re welcome.

Not recommended if your favorite chocolate bar is a Snickers.

Pomegranate Bad Decisions

I went to a convention in LA – the second annual one – and one night we were planning to have a small party and play Cards Against Humanity. ‘Small’ ended up being about 15 people crammed into a hotel room, but it was awesome. We’d promised to make Bad Decisions for people, but since T and I were only flying with carryons, we had to source everything in LA, which meant modifications, since the liquor store we went to didn’t have cherry schnapps.

Ingredients

  • Pink Lemonade Crystal Light
  • Pomegranate Schnapps
  • Watermelon Schnapps
  • Sweet Revenge

The pomegranate ended up tasting amazing.

The preparation was in the massive pitcher we also ended up buying – it held at least a couple liters. One of those pitcher packs of Crystal Light, then fill it with water to just shy of halfway. Then half the bottle each of the two schnapps and the Sweet Revenge, put the lid on, and swirl until it’s all a uniform pink. Serve over ice.