Freshpak media event and rooibos iced tea two ways

Image courtesy of Freshpak

 

Let’s start this post with some fun facts about me: Fact #1: 99.99% of my days start in exactly the same way – with a cup of rooibos tea. They have done for about the last seven or eight years. It is fair to say that I am a fan! Fact #2: I used to make iced tea (including a rooibos variant) for a living before my London / travelling years. I was obviously thrilled then to receive an invitation from Freshpak to a creative afternoon with chef, Kirsty Rowett.

 

Delicious canapés at the event.
 

 

The event took place at The 7th Floor in Observatory. This was my second visit to this venue which has a bar area, food theatre and meeting and dining facilities. There is also a large kitchen which was a flurry of activity that afternoon as the chefs whipped up a variety of dishes for us to try.

On arrival we were offered refreshing rooibos iced teas which we enjoyed whilst chatting and catching up. We also had the chance to savour some elegant canapés: baby beetroot tartlets with rooibos and goats cheese fondant, porcini risotto bon bons with a rooibos and parmesan custard, and rooibos smoked springbok loin with berry compote and parsnip crisps. All made with rooibos and all very posh!

 

Kirsty demonstrates a few recipes at The 7th Floor Food Theatre.

 

Next we were ushered into the food theatre where we were welcomed by Charmaine Moodley, Freshpak Rooibos Brand Manager. She introduced Kirsty Rowett who took us through the steps of making a basic rooibos iced tea base to which any number of ingredients could be added to a create a signature flavour. Anything from mint to raspberries to cucumber – the options really are endless!

We tasted a delicious Berry Blast iced tea, and a Rose Petal iced tea. Kirsty also demonstrated rooibos, apple and ginger syrup drizzled cupcakes with caramelised Italian meringue (if you think that sounds good you should have tasted them!), rooibos and peach ice lollies and smoked salmon trout on rooibos infused blinis with fennel and red onion crème fraiche. As the demonstration for each dish was completed waiters would magically appear with trays of samples for us to taste, such a treat.
 

 

Just some of the delicious recipes demonstrated at the event.
 

Despite knowing what a versatile product rooibos is I was still suitably impressed by the array of sweet and savoury dishes that were prepared that afternoon. As we left we were each given a small wooden crate containing a selection of iced tea ingredients including rooibos teabags (of course!), fresh mint, limes, blueberries, vanilla, cinnamon and honey. It has been ages since I made my own iced tea, but inspired by the afternoon I was excited to try some new flavours at home.

 
The goodie box – iced tea waiting to happen!

 

Below is a basic iced tea recipe to get you started, as well as two simple variations for you to try – a delicately spiced and not too sweet rooibos and honey iced tea and, my favourite, a fresh and zesty apple, mint and lime flavour. Don’t forget to add your discarded tea bags to the compost!

ICED TEA BASE RECIPE

  • 5 rooibos tea bags
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 4 tbsp sugar

1.) Place the rooibos tea bags in a jug. Pour the boiling water over the teabags and allow to steep for 5 minutes. Remove and discard the tea bags.

2.) Add the sugar and stir to dissolve.

3.) You can now add still or sparkling water, fruit, spices, herbs or whatever you wish – it’s time to get creative!

 

ROOIBOS, HONEY AND CINNAMON ICED TEA

  • Servings: Makes about 1½ litres
  • Print

  • 5 rooibos tea bags
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 litre ice cold  water
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ice and lemon slices to serve

1.) Place the rooibos tea bags, honey and cinnamon sticks in a jug or bowl. Pour the boiling water over over the top, stir and leave to steep for 5 minutes.

2.) Remove and discard the tea bags. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve. Stir in the iced water and lemon juice.

3.) Chill the mixture in the fridge. Remove the cinnamon sticks and serve with plenty of ice and fresh lemon slices.

 

ROOIBOS, APPLE, MINT AND LIME ICED TEA

  • Servings: Makes about 1 litre
  • Print

  • 5 rooibos tea bags
  • ¼ cup fresh mint leaves
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 cups apple juice
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • ice, lime slices and fresh mint to serve

1.) Place the rooibos tea bags and mint in a jug or bowl. Pour the boiling water over the top, stir and leave to steep for 5 minutes.

2.) Remove and discard the tea bags and mint. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve. Stir in the apple juice and lime juice.

3.) Chill the mixture in the fridge. Serve with plenty of ice, lime slices and fresh mint.

 

 

Images courtesy of Freshpak

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