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Sweet and chocolate-y with a hint of tartness, these handmade treats will surely make your day.

Ingredients:
20-25 strawberries
6 oz. white chocolate, finely chopped
1.5 tsp Classic Tea Company Matcha


Directions:
1) Thoroughly wash and dry the strawberries, then cut the tops off each to remove the green leafs. Place all strawberries in the refrigerator.

2) Finely chop the white chocolate and place in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 1 minute, stir, and microwave again for 20 seconds. If the chocolate has not melted, continue microwaving in 10 second increments until completely melted.

3)Take the strawberries out of the fridge. Make sure each strawberry is completely dry.

4) Now take a bamboo or metal skewer and put strawberry on one end so that you can dip the strawberry into the chocolate.

5) Sift the Matcha over the melted white chocolate covered strawberries twirling the strawberry to coat the entire thing evenly.

6) Now place the Matcha dusted strawberry on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat steps 4, 5 and 6 for each strawberry.

7) Chill the strawberries in the fridge for 8-10 minutes or until firm.

Did you try this recipe? If so let us know how it came out or any other feedback you have on our Facebook post here:
https://www.facebook.com/classicteaco/posts/1758266574457363
6/23/2016 3:59 PM By Jason Reis Recipes & Tea Pairings,
How Water Quality Affects Your Tea
How Water Quality Affects Your Tea

Believe it or not, the type of water you use to steep your tea can have an effect on taste as well as euphoric benefits. I know what you’re thinking, how can water matter that much to my tea drinking experience? Truth is, it has quite a significant effect on the whole process. In fact most people in China refer to water as the "mother of tea." That name itself indicates how important water is for the brewing of tea.

Hard Water vs. Soft Water We’ve all heard the terms hard water and soft water, but what components do each of these have or not have that classify them as hard or soft?

Hard water typically contains high traces of magnesium and calcium. This sometimes causes clothes to feel harsh or look dingy after a wash. It can also leave your hands feeling like sandpaper after doing the dishes. Now imagine what it does to the taste factors in your tea.

A more viable option for your tea drinking experience, is going the route of soft water. Traces of magnesium and calcium are low and it is much less harsh on the skin, clothes and other household items that require water usage. Soft water is usually found in springs where there are extremely low concentrations of magnesium and calcium.

What’s the solution? You can enjoy soft water from bottled spring water or go the route of adding soft water filters to your home faucets. So when having your tea time, take into consideration the effects of water on your other everyday activities when deciding on what type of water to use. Soft water will help you to enjoy your favorite leaf more than you ever thought it could. Go ahead, give it a try!
5/25/2016 8:00 AM By Jason Reis General,
A cup of tea a day keeps the doctor away!
Have you every heard the term "an apple a day will keep the doctor away"? Well it is not just an apple that will "keep the doctor away" a good quality tea will give you the same benefit.

So what do we know about tea and its benefits on our health these days? Some common knowledge is that tea can soothe the mind and body, putting you into a relaxed mindset. It helps to cure or keep the common cold at bay. Sometimes, tea can bring about nostalgia which may give you a sense of peace and calmness. Some teas are disease smashing superheros!

In our opinion, the most attractive health quality that tea has its ability to help in the prevention of certain cancers such as, skin, small intestine, breast, esophagus, ovarian, oral, prostate, stomach, pancreas and liver. Although tea is helpful in this area, it is not a cure and it is best to consult your doctor.

To name-drop a few...

Tea contains antioxidants which help to maintain healthy body tissue and protect it from disease. Some teas contain caffeine, such as Oolong tea, which speeds up the metabolism. And we all know what that means - a thinner waistline!

How about the advantage of black tea’s bacteria-attacking antioxidants? Or its power to prevent plaque build up? Yep, it’s true. black tea is kickin’ plaque and takin’ names.

Perhaps the most powerful tea on the market, Rooibos teas keeps allergy and digestive issues at bay, and is known to reduce risks of cancer. This ultimate herbal tea derives from the South African Red Bush and is caffeine-free. Rooibos teas have a sweet and nutty flavor, which makes mixing with other teas a delightful surprise.

So those of you who are tired of eating apples, steep some tea and enjoy, Just watch the sugar count!
5/18/2016 8:18 AM By Jason Reis General,
Green Tea vs Black Tea
To help you decide, we’re going to break it down for you, all the way down to the seedlings of the plant they come from. Here we’ll show you the differences in each and their individual benefits.

Both derive from the famous Camellia Sinensis plant. The Camellia Sinensis is usually found in tropical or subtropical climates. What’s really cool about the seeds of this plant, is that they can be used to create tea oil, which is curated for medical or cosmetic purposes.

But how do you get two different teas from the same bush? It’s all in the oxidation, baby! Or lack thereof. When harvesting the leaves, if kept from oxidizing, then heated by steaming or pan-firing, which helps the leaves to retain their color and fresh flavor, these leaves produce what we call green tea.

On the other side of the spectrum, when producing black tea, the leaves are withered then treated like a punching bag. They get torn, crushed, rolled and curled. Then the leaves are allowed to oxidize before being dried. Thus creates black tea.

Decisions, decisions...
Both teas range from an array of cardiovascular and cancer prevention health benefits, among many more. In 2013 the “Journal of Biological Chemistry” published a study that found out that the EGCG that appears in green tea interacts with the cells that line your blood vessels and promotes a physiological process that shields your cells from stress. Otherwise known as autophagy. Black tea has its benefits for improving blood vessel function as well, especially when combatting with coronary artery disease, says the Linus Pauling Institute.

When it comes to caffeine content, black tea surpasses green tea by almost double with a whopping 42 to 72 milligrams, compared to green tea’s 9 to 50 milligrams.

How’s that taste?
We saved the important stuff for last. How do they compare in taste? Green tea is known for its more light and earthy taste. Black tea, however, is much more bold, but offers a slight sweet twist.

So how does it feel to now be a pro at green and black tea diffences?
5/11/2016 8:09 AM By Jason Reis General,
Tea and Pregnancy
Tea has been widely known for a variety of health benefits, such as heart health. It also includes antioxidants that may reduce the risk of cancer. If that wasn’t enough, it is a great immune system booster. When expecting, you can expect even better benefits. A cup of your favorite tea in the morning may reduce morning sickness and has also been known to reduce labor time. Some teas, though, may be hazardous to your pregnancy. We will give you all of the scoop right here on what to indulge in and what to avoid.

Although it is recommended for a soon-to-be-mom to stay away from caffeine, there is a healthy amount of daily intake that could be useful. It is suggested that limiting yourself to under 200 milligrams per day is still a healthy option. There are about 40 to 50 milligrams of caffeine in each cup of tea. If you are going the route of herbal tea, then no need to count, herbals are caffeine free. Decaf tea contains around .4 milligrams.

Perhaps one of the best teas to drink during pregnancy is Rooibos tea. It contains a whole lot of antioxidants, magnesium and calcium. These can help with digestion and may ease heartburn, which is a common symptom of expectant mothers. The best part is, it’s caffeine free!

Sometimes a woman will become somewhat dehydrated during pregnancy, and will find it harder to intake the amount of water the body needs to keep mother and baby hydrated. Herbal teas have been known to increase hydration in pregnant women and they also include many key nutrients needed during pregnancy.

Chamomile tea has been used for centuries by those seeking a natural sleep aid, treatment for fevers, colds, stomach ailments, and as well as for it's anti-inflammatory properties. However for those who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant Chamomile is a tea to avoid! In recent years we have learned that Chamomile tea is an abortifacient. So you may want to put the chamomile tea on a shelf now.

In addition to Camomile tea some other herbal teas to avoid are black cohosh, blue cohosh and dong quai. Detox and diet teas should be off limits as well. So there it is in a nutshell, but please remember to consult your doctor about any intake that you are unsure of. Every woman and every pregnancy is very unique.
5/4/2016 8:02 AM By Jason Reis General,
So much tea to choose from, but so little time! Tea drinkers know exactly what their faves are and when it is the perfect time to indulge in each. But what most don’t know is that not all teas are technically a tea. Confused? Don’t worry, we’ll clear things up below.

So what’s the difference?
All types of pure teas, such as black, white, green and oolong, come from the same Camellia Sinensis plant. Two leaves and one bud, otherwise known as a “flush”, is usually plucked twice a year by hand to make them. The only difference between these four teas, that come from the same bush, is how their leaves are processed after being picked.

While “real teas” are processed and brewed from leaves only, herbal teas can be brewed from the leaves, stems, bark, roots, rhizomes and flowers of any particular herb that is being used to make tea.

Some more fun facts:
Herbal teas, like chamomile, hibiscus and mint, are not technically “real teas”, they are herbal teas. But many of them are infused with real tea, such as black or green, to enhance flavor while still getting the benefits that your Camellia Sinensis plant produces.

White tea is the lightest and most delicate of all of the teas. White is produced from the young fresh leaves of the plant. It is plucked and dried right away so that there is no time for oxidation. On the contrary, black tea leaves are given plenty of time to oxidize, producing a more bold flavor.

What is oxidation and its role in our tea?
Tea leaf oxidation refers to the browning of tea leaves and the difference of flavor and aroma compounds in finished teas. Oxidation is sometimes deliberately initiated, controlled then stopped or prevented altogether depending on what type of tea is being made. Oxidation technique is how the fuller body and richer color plays a part in Oolong tea, or the light aroma of green tea from slight oxidation.
4/27/2016 7:12 PM By Jason Reis General,
Loose Tea vs Tea Bags
Why Loose Leaf Tea Is Better Than Bagged Tea

So the classic loose leaf vs. tea bag saga rages on. We’ve all seen those people who prefer loose leaf tea and some of us cringe at the inconvenience of that. But before you knock it, let’s get down to the facts.

One of the greatest advantages of loose leaf tea is that it is not broken down into tiny flecks of dust or tea "fannings". Fannings or tea dust is the lowest grade of tea and is typically not as flavorful as tea steeped from whole leaves. The purpose behind loose leaf tea is to keep the leaves in tact as much as possible so as to produce the full bodied aroma and flavor that most are seeking when wanting to enjoy a cup of tea.

Ever take note that you’re creating an extra step in squeezing your tea bags dry when steeping?
Ever take note that your tea bag is not fully rung out when you’ve put it down and are ready to sip away?

Imagine all of the yummy stuff that’s left in that little trap of a tea bag. When tea leaves are broken down before use (sometimes long before use) and stowed away in bags, they lose many of their essential oils and aroma.

Let’s talk about convenience. It is a common misconception that loose leaf tea is less convenient than bagged tea. While there might be one or two extra little steps, after brewing a few cups of tea with loose leaf, you’ll be such a pro at brewing loose leaf that you’ll want to make it your day job.

The general measurement is 1 teaspoon of tea to 6 ounces of water. Be sure to get yourself a gadget or two to help you with the steeping process. We’ve made it super convenient with our easy-to-use glass tea steepers and more! So go out there in this big bad world of tea bags and show them there’s no reason to be afraid of loose leaf tea!

Happy sipping!
4/20/2016 12:57 PM By Jason Reis General,
Shamrock Matcha Shake
Ingredients:
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1 cup almond milk
1 ripe banana
1/2 tsp organic Matcha
Handful of spinach (washed & dried)
Pumpkin seeds
Splash of Bailey’s Irish Cream (optional) 1 cup coconut milk (optional)

Instructions:
In a blender add all the ingredients, (except the coconut milk) blend until thick and smooth. In a big bowl whisk the coconut milk until stiff peaks. Pour shake into a cup and top with a heaping spoon of the whipped coconut milk.
3/16/2016 12:47 PM By Jason Reis Recipes & Tea Pairings,
Pairing Food with Tea
Pairing tea with food is just as much of an art as pairing wine with a meal or using the right spices. Fortunately tea is so versatile you can pair it with a variety of dishes.Read More
3/1/2016 9:55 AM By Jason Recipes & Tea Pairings,
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