Vegetable Fritters

Tea time snacks get a makeover! Try these delicious fritters loaded with the goodness of vegetables and serve with your favourite tea.

2 potatoes, peeled & grated
2 carrot, peeled & grated
3 zucchinis, grated
1 onion, chopped
½ cup self-raising flour
½ tsp sea salt
¼ cup fresh coriander, chopped
3 eggs, separated
2 tbsp olive oil


  1. In a large bowl, mix together the grated potatoes, carrot, zucchini. Add the onion, flour, salt, coriander and egg yolks into the bowl. Stir well until combined.
  2. Whisk the egg whites in a bowl until stiff peaks form. Fold this gently through vegetable mixture and set it aside.
  3. Heat a large pan over medium heat. Brush on a little oil and add a ladle of the mixture. Cook for five minutes and flip. Cook for another five minutes. Both sides need to be uniformly golden-brown.
  4. Repeat until all the fritters are cooked.
  5. Serve with chutney or a yogurt dip.

Apricot Jam

Homemade is happiness, and so is this beautiful recipe for apricot jam from our kitchen.

1.5 kg fresh apricots
800g sugar
1 pod French vanilla
Juice of 1 whole lemon

  1. Cut the fruits in half, remove the stones.
  2. Mix the cut fruts with sugar and let it sit in a large pot. Score the vanilla pod down its length and cut into three. Add to the fruit and sugar mixture with lemon juice. Let it steep for several hours.
  3. When the sugar and apricots have softened, transfer into a large pan and set it over a low heat. Stir until the sugar has completely dissolved.
  4. Turn up the heat and let it boil for 20-25 minutes, until the mixture is thick.
  5. Turn off the heat and let it stand for 20 minutes. Transfer it gently into a warm sterilised jars, ensuring that the vanilla pods are divided between the bottles.
  6. Cover and seal while still hot. Once open, store in the fridge.


Ginger Tea Ice Cream

Sri Lanka’s finest tea features in this ice cream recipe. It has loads of warmth and smokiness despite being a frozen dessert fit for any time of the year.

360ml whole milk
165g sugar
4tbsp Imboolpitiya Estate Ceylon FBOP loose leaf tea
100g fresh ginger, sliced
2 cups heavy whipping cream


  1. In a saucepan, heat up the whole milk with sugar, and ginger over medium heat. Don’t let the milk come up to boil. It should be hot enough to melt the sugar. Once all the sugar has melted, take it off the heat.
  2. Add the tea leaves to this mixture, stir and allow it to steep for five minutes (or more for stronger flavour).
  3. Strain the mix to discard the tea leaves and ginger.
  4. Allow it to cool completely before pouring into an ice cream maker. Follow the ice cream maker instructions and allow it to churn until set.
  5. Store in a freezer until service.
  6. Before serving, scoop into bowls and garnish with topping of your choice.

Iced Hibiscus Tea

Goodness of tea and cooling hibiscus, all put together in one ruby-hued drink.

Preparation Time: 1 hour
Serves: 8 people

5 tbsp Hibiscus Cut loose leaf tea
3 tbsp Assam Black loose leaf tea
5 cups hot water
1½ cups castor sugar
1 bottle ginger ale
Garnish with mint leaves and lemon peel


  1. Place the tea leaves in a large jug.
  2. Carefully pour hot water over the tea leaves. Stir and let it steep for 10 minutes.
  3. Strain out the tea leaves.
  4. Stir in the castor sugar in the brewed tea. Once all the sugar has dissolved, chill in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve.
  5. Just before serving, stir in the ginger ale. Pour over ice in a tall glass and garnish with mint leaves and lemon peel.

Earl Grey Lavender Cupcakes

Dainty cakes always look pretty at a high tea table; but nothing seems more delicious and enticing than these Earl Grey infused cupcakes with a rich honey frosting.

For the cupcake
½ cup butter, at room temperature
2 eggs, at room temperature
1¾ cup plain flour
1½ tsp baking powder
2 tsp dried lavender
½ tsp salt
1 cup castor sugar
¼ cup honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup milk
5 tbsp Earl Grey loose leaf tea

For the honey frosting –
2/3 cup mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
3 tbsp butter, at room temperature
¼ cup honey
½ tsp vanilla extract
3 cups icing sugar


  1. In a medium sized glass bowl, combine plain flour, baking powder, dried lavender and salt. Set aside.
  2. Heat up the milk and add the Earl Grey tea leaves into it. Stir and let it steep for at least 10 minutes. Once done, strain out the tea leaves and let the milk come down to room temperature.
  3. Preheat oven to 175 ⁰C.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, beat together butter with an electric mixer until soft and creamy. Add icing sugar, honey and vanilla. Beat until combined. Add eggs, one at a time and beat well after each addition.
  5. Alternately add the dry ingredients mix and tea infused milk to the butter mixture. Gently beat after each addition until the batter is combined well.
  6. Take a muffin pan and line it with colourful cupcake liner. Fill each cup about ¾ full with the batter. Once all the cups are filled, gently tap the pan on the table to release any trapped air bubbles and smoothen the top.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until done. Allow it to cool completely before frosting.
  8. For the frosting, beat together the mascarpone cheese, butter, honey and vanilla with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Gradually add the icing sugar and beat until everything has combined. It needs to reach a smooth, spreadable consistency.
  9. Transfer the prepared frosting to a piping bag and pipe the cooled cupcakes with it. Sprinkle some dried lavender over the cupcakes as a final garnish.

Pomegranate Tea Limeade

Stay cool this summer with this delicious pomegranate infused iced tea.

Time: 45 minutes
Serves: 8 people

8 tbsp Okayti Exotica loose leaf tea
8 cups hot water
2 cups pomegranate juice
3 limes, thinly sliced
¼ cups castor sugar
Garnish with pomegranate seeds


  1. Place the tea leaves in a large jug.
  2. Carefully pour hot water over the tea leaves. Stir and let it steep for 10 minutes.
  3. Strain out the tea leaves.
  4. Stir in the castor sugar in the brewed tea. Once all the sugar has dissolved, and the tea has come down to room temperature, chill in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve.
  5. Just before serving, stir in the pomegranate juice. Pour over ice in a glass and garnish with pomegranate seeds.

Summer Tea All Year Round

In India, there’s never a shortage of hot days and they certainly play a number on each one of us. At times like these, all we wish to do is reach out for something that can cool and refresh us from within.

Infused teas, which may be such a blessing in the winter months, what with the warmth they impart, may be just as great in the summer months, when they may be brewed cold. Here are some great ways to get through these summer months on a delicious refreshing note.

Sun-brew your tea
Did you know that you can actually set of jar of water, with your favourite tea and some flavouring ingredients in the sun and create a gorgeous brew for yourself? Some tips you need to keep in mind though, for your sun tea.

The teas you prepare this way will actually vary in taste from when they are made over the fire.

Tea Infusions with Herbs
You may prepare infused teas in two ways – in a saucepan over the fire and then set it aside to cool or by allowing the tea to infuse in the refrigerator with all the ingredients. This will be an overnight process but worth the wait. There are a range of combinations that you may consider this summer for your herbal teas.

Chamomile and mint, herbal combinations work really well together in a tea. A mix of lemon herbs – lemongrass and lemon verbena for example also go together well. You could also try using a lemon herb with peppermint, hibiscus mint or rosemary.

With green tea being on the top of the list for most tea drinkers, there are a few combinations you may think of trying as well. Green tea goes extremely well with lavender or mint in the brew.

Tea Infusions with Fruits
There are a whole range of fruits that you may consider adding to your tea. Apple, orange and lemon are the most popular choices when it comes to tea infused recipes. You may also consider adding frozen ice cubes with pieces of fruit in them. Almost every kind of berry works amazingly well when added to brewed tea – choose from strawberries, blueberries or raspberries. Kiwis too, make a great addition.

There are so many interesting combinations of infused teas you could try this summer. Seeing how the summer months seem interminable, each day may be dedicated to a new tea experiment.

How to Brew the Perfect Cup of Tea

Whether a strong tea, light, extra sugar or simple black, every person has their own preference while drinking their perfect cup of tea. But is it that easy to brew one? Here are a few tips that will make this task a breeze.

Known to be more oxidized (a process that turns the leaves darker) than oolong, white and green tea, black tea is known for its strong flavour and brisk texture. Often it can be enjoyed alone, but milk and sweetener can be added if desired.
Temperature: 98 – 100 degree Celsius
Steeping Time: 2 to 3 minutes


Oolong tea is either rolled into long curly leaves or wrap into small beads, each with a tail. Based on its oxidization, the flavour may vary between sweet and fruity liquor with honey aroma, woody and thick with roasted aroma, or green and fresh with floral aroma.
Temperature: 85 – 100 degree Celsius
Steeping Time: 3 minutes

Its Chinese origin backed by considerable health benefits make green tea’s popularity a much deserved one. It goes through low processing and retains antioxidants and minerals. Ranging between a pale to bright lime green in colour, these tea leaves have a mildly grassy flavour with a nutty roasted finish.
Temperature: 70 – 80 degree Celsius
Steeping Time: 45 seconds to 1 minute

Tisane or popularly known as herbal tea, dates back to the ancient Egyptian era. In China, this majestic blend of herbs, spices and tea leaves is known as Liang Cha.  With no caffeine content, the infusion has a strong yet bouquet aroma with hints of flavour derived from its mix of chamomile, berries, ginger, fruits, spices and so on.
Temperature: 80 – 110 degree Celsius
Steeping Time: 5 to 6 minutes

A rare infusion, white tea is harvested by hand and made from the first-plucked delicate buds in the month of March and early April. These tea leaves are only available few days a year and brew into a mild flavoured tea with sweet notes of melon or honey. It is primarily harvested in China with minimalistic processing that helps preserve healthy level of antioxidants.
Temperature: 80 – 85 degree Celsius
Steeping Time: 4 to 5 minutes

Understanding Tea Flavourings & Pairings

Macaroon, biscuits or chocolates? Pairing food that complements your perfect cup of tea can be a task to reckon with.

Harmonizing the right food with the right tea is simply an art of understanding humble and exotic ingredients and how they will enrich the flavour of that warm cup of tea.

Black Tea with rich flavours
Smoky, earthy, full bodied and robust: black tea has a very distinct and peculiar flavour that can work well with various foods. The thumb rule to follow while pairing black tea is to match its strong and full flavour with a heavy dish. Our sweet and citrusy Blood Orange Tea easily marries the denseness of a cheesecake. While the classic and old fashioned Earl Grey can be sipped along with spicy meats. And if you are a fan of the finest and most aromatic Ceylon black tea- Dimbula then pair it with seafood delicately flavoured with mild spices.

Green Tea with chicken and seafood
While thinking of green tea, simmer down a heavy, hearty meal with its earthy, light texture and grassy flavour. Go by the principle of pairing Green Tea with chicken and seafood. Our Snowy Shan’s strong and tart flavour pairs brilliantly with juicy chicken dishes. Dumplings can make for a perfect match with our finest and most exquisite Jasmine Pearl while bits of soft brie cheese can be picked with grassy and strong toasty finish of our Dragon Well tea.

White Tea with lightly flavoured foods
The rare white tea with its subtle flavours must be paired with delicate and light food. These tea leaves are harvested at a younger age possessing natural sweetness. Our finest delicate Silver White Needle is a divine liquid with a smooth and luxurious texture that goes with its silky-sweet aftertaste. Grab a light salad with no dressing or a simple sandwich to nibble with its soft citrus undertones.

Oolong Tea with savoury flavours
Oolongs are known for its complex flavour and strong perfume. To match its floral undertones, serve lighter oolongs with salty savoury food seafood such as lightly done scallops, rich salmon or even a poached lobster. While darker oolong’s velvety smooth textures goes brilliantly well with smoked meat or meat-based appetizers. Keep a variation of salty and savoury appetizers and let your guests chose what’s best.

Herbal Tea with fruity desserts
A concoction of herbs, spices and tea leaves, herbal tea is as healthy and refreshing as it gets. The aromatic brew with hints of infused herbs pair up amazingly well with fruit based desserts. Nibble on some pistachio cake or a delicious baklava. You can also pair it with a lemon tea cake at an afternoon tea party.

Chai Spiced Carrot Cake

This masala chai infused carrot cake is beyond perfect. With all its warm goodness and luscious cream cheese frosting, it’s a melt-in-your-mouth deliciousness you deserve.

Cook Time: 40 minutes + 40 minutes bake time
Serves: 8-10 people

For the cake
1/4 cup boiling water
4 tbsp THT Assam Black Tea
2 + 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp green cardamom, ground
500 g carrots, peeled
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
½ cup packed light brown sugar
4 eggs, at room temperature
½ cup vegetable oil

For the frosting
227 g cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
3 cups icing sugar, sifted
Crushed walnuts, for decoration

For the cake

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C. Butter a 9 inch round cake pan.
  2. Pour boiling water over the tea leaves and let this sit aside for 10 minutes. Strain the tea leaves and reserve the water.
  3. Whisk the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and green cardamom together in a bowl.
  4. In another bowl, beat the granulated sugar, brown sugar, vegetable oil, eggs and tea until combined. Using a spatula fold in the carrots. Fold in the flour mixture and gently mix only until well-combined.
  5. Transfer the batter to the prepared cake pan and bake the cake for about 35 to 40 minutes

For the frosting,

  1. Beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy.
  2. Add icing sugar, one cup at a time, mixing well after each addition.


  1. Cover the cooled cake with the frosting using an offset spatula and decorate with crushed walnuts.

The House of Tea by Foodhall