blood-orange & mint tea

28 01 2011

When the air outside is cold and overcast – and in my case, dumping buckets of snow every minute – a nice, hot cup of tea can feel dreamily comforting: especially a fragrant, steamy mug of homemade Blood-orange & Mint tea.

blood orange juicing

I was feeling frisky at the grocery store last week and brought home a small sack of blood oranges, thinking about making something luscious for dessert. Blood oranges, originally from Italy and Spain, look like small, hard oranges on the outside and very dark grapefruits on the inside. The ruby coloring is due to anthocyanins, a kind of plant pigment common in flowers & autumn leaves, as well as in fruit like blueberries, cranberries, cherries, and bananas. They’re sweet, very juicy, almost seedless, and a complete mess if spilled on the carpet or your clothes. So be warned: yummy, messy, goodness.

Want to try? It’s awfully easy. And most important, it’s delicious – my toddler would drink this by the pintful if I let him (which I do not). We’re making this a good alternative to store-bought juice, which Bebe rarely drinks anymore because it tends to upset his stomach.

bebe likes tea

I used two of my favorite kitchen gadgets, a handheld immersion blender/processor & a basic citrus juicer, however these aren’t required. You can do it all by hand and then whisk everything together, or use a regular-sized blender.

Blood orange & Mint Tea mix (makes 2 cups of concentrated tea mix)
adapted from lemon-mint tea recipe in Desserts by the Yard by Sherry Yard

1/2 C fresh mint leaves, loosely packed
4 blood oranges
10-12 oz. honey
1 Tbsp powdered ginger

Put mint leaves in a colander, rinse well, then move to a medium-sized mixing bowl or blender. (If you plan to mix this by hand, first mince the leaves very finely on a cutting board then put them in the mixing bowl).

Slice the blood oranges in half, then juice them and discard the rinds. Add juice to the mint leaves. You can also add the fruit pulp, just be sure to remove any seeds first.

Add honey and powdered ginger. It sounds like a lot of honey, and the tea concentrate will taste very sweet, but this will be diluted by water later.

Blend well, making sure there aren’t any big pieces of mint or fruit pulp floating around – they should be small enough to easily fit through a drinking straw.

You should end up with about 2 cups (16-18) ounces of concentrated herbal tea mix. Mine is stored in a jar in the refrigerator – it will keep for about a week – and shaken well before each use. You can combine the whole mix with 1 gallon of hot water OR add it to individual drinking cups/mugs.

For individual cups/mugs of tea: for every 1 cup (8 oz or 250mL) of hot water, add 2 Tbsp of the tea mix. Enjoy!

Please note that this is an herbal tea (defined as “[non-tea bush] plants, fruit, flowers, OR herbs + hot water”), and does not include any dried tea leaves. You could add a teabag to your cup, if you like, and make it a flavored tea.

Instead of blood oranges, which you may not have available, you can also use 4 regular oranges, 3-4 lemons, or 4 limes.




3 responses

31 01 2011

yummy! made it! loved it! ruined a white shirt! forgot to share it!!

31 01 2011

Funny 🙂 and it can be a little messy – I spilled the first orange’s juice all over the kitchen table almost immediately after taking that picture. Somehow it did not land on the carpet, phew!

3 02 2011

This sounds heavenly! I drink fresh mint tea often, especially in the summer when I grown my own mint but this I must try 🙂

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