A HEALTHY CUP OF TEA
Bursting with antioxidants and other healing properties, the humble beverage boasts myriad benefits for mind and body. By Priyanka Elhence
Did you know that the delicate notes of pure white tea yields a huge amount of antioxidants, while green tea’s elegant notes of fresh grass make them both excellent pairing recommendations for salads and vegetarian dishes?
“For beginner tea drinkers, green teas such as Green of Fujian and Sencha Matcha are great for their delicate taste, health benefits and lower theine contents. Rich in zinc, vitamin C, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, the umami taste of green tea goes best with seafood and salad to accentuate the sweetness and flavours of the dishes,” says Maranda Barnes, Director of Communications & Co-founder of TWG Tea. Likewise, blue tea (commonly known as oolong or “Black Dragon” tea) and black tea are better paired with meats and heavier, richer foods, to help improve digestion and drain the body of excess fluids.
For centuries, tea has been enjoyed as a noble beverage, treasured for its healing powers and wellness properties. From white teas to black teas, this rare and precious ingredient is rich in vitamins, zinc and antioxidants, playing a crucial role in helping the body recover.
“Dating back thousands of years to ancient civilisations in China, India and Egypt, herbal teas have been known for their medicinal qualities which are beneficial for holistic health and general well-being. Made from infusing tea, flowers, herbs and spices, herbal teas are still widely used today for helping with boosting immunity and fighting infections, easing digestion after a heavy meal or to simply unwind and relax,” adds Barnes.
“For instance, Mate Tea, a traditional herbal infusion from South America, is an energy booster which naturally contains high levels of theine, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants,
making it a perfect tea to increase focus. A popular natural remedy for stomach ailments, mint tea such as Marrakech Mint Tea is commonly used to aid stomach discomfort; while for something calming and soothing, Chamomile flowers boast a rich honey aroma and yield a golden, theine-free cup, ideal for pregnant women and children. Apart from helping with a good night’s sleep, Chamomile is also widely known to have antibacterial and anti- inflammatory properties.”
Combining the best of beauty and wellness in a teacup,
TWG Tea has several choices for maintaining a youthful and radiant look. For example, TWG Tea’s Grand Golden Yin Zhen with 24K gold with buttery notes of sweet honeycomb is best recommended for restful sleep, and to help relax the body, as white tea has the highest concentration of polyphenols and antioxidants, which lower body temperature and stimulate the immune system.
And to revitalise tired eyes, TWG Tea’s Imperial Oolong Tea’s natural tannins and vitamins in the tea stimulate the contours of the eyes and revitalises the skin, leaving them fresh and rejuvenated. Simply place two cool, pre-infused teabags on your eyes for a few minutes and relax.
Eric Chan, co-founder of Mad About Sucre, and his team have a special ethos for their restaurant-patisserie-chocolaterie since its inception in 2015: "If it's good for our families and loved ones, it's good for our guests". Originally having started out to cater to his young nephew’s 40+ allergies, Chan was on a mission to cook totally clean, letting the natural components shine. "We're always looking for new and unique flavours when we combine different ingredients, and that's what makes our dishes so natural yet rich in flavour, with our flavour pairings culminating in the natural ‘umami’ flavour profile,” he says.
Case in point, his signature four-hour Stew of Tomatoes, topped with Handpicked Crabmeat use fully ripened, sweet tomatoes from four different regions in France and Italy. “We stew them for 4 to 4.5 hours without any water, until everything is broken down. And the natural sweet notes of the tomatoes complement the extra burst of flavour from the crabmeat,” shares Chan.
Chan sources only the freshest and top-quality natural ingredients, clear of any chemical or growth hormone supplements. For instance, good-quality wild-caught salmon is one of the most popular ingredients on his menu, and is only available in the restaurant when it is in season to adhere to sustainable practices. In fact, it took a special salmon-sourcing dive trip in Nordic Europe and Iceland to help him better understand the process behind top-quality salmon production.
Likewise, his sister Lena’s (Patisserie chef & also co-founder) heavily reduced sugar creations (up to 90% for some) is made possible by the use of natural sweeteners such as honey and fruits, without the use of white sugar and other artificial sugars. Specially created for the Year of the Ox, her gold-leaf topped Golden Pineapple Tarts feature the most ripened pineapples flown in from Sarawak and the Caribbean Islands. A mix of 10 pineapples are cooked for 12 hours in a crockpot to break the pulp down to a puree, which then rests for 10 days so that the flavour can deepen and mature further. No artificial flavours and sweetners are added to the mix, nor to the tart base made using organic flour and French butter. Says Chan, “We’re championing a lifestyle of clean eating, because good and uncomplicated, delicious, natural food without compromising on flavours is what we are about.”