Another trip around the sun, another Summer winding down, and another occasion to celebrate with tea: the Autumnal Equinox rolls around once more.
For those of you who don’t pay a lot of attention to the various phases of our journey through this solar system, I’ll give a brief rundown of what “Autumnal Equinox” is. (Those of you who already know this can skip to the next paragraph.) “Equinox” means equal. “Autumnal” means Autumn. Duh! Seriously, since our planet’s Equator (that imaginary line around the center of our globe) “tilts” so that we don’t directly face the sun, our days get shorter and longer (with our nights getting longer and shorter). At the Equinox, night hours and day hours are exactly 12 each. The Autumnal Equinox marks when the days start getting shorter and the nights longer (here in the Northern Hemisphere). With that in mind, let’s see how you can mark the occasion with tea.
Shorter daylight hours means cooler temperatures, so all you iced tea fans might want to switch over to hot tea. Those of us who drink hot tea year round will be looking into some of the more “robust” tasting teas such as a malty Assam, a spicy Yunnan, the lightly smoky Keemun, or a basic black Ceylon. Don’t forget pu-erhs and Kenyans. Blends that contain any combination of these are also good choices. Or you could go for some spiced teas (often simply called “chais” here in the U.S. even though “chai” means “tea”) that have spices and flavors we tend to associate with Autumn here: cinnamon, apple, pumpkin, etc. (so far, I haven’t come across a corn flavored tea, even though corn is harvested this time of year).
This brings to mind foods that can be part of your tea time, including apple pie, pumpkin pie/scones/bread (or even all three), pecan tarts, cornbread with butter and honey (yum!), the list goes on and on.
In many school districts, kids are already back in school so you moms and/or dads who are at home during the day can have a self-pampering tea time. Light a scented candle, bake up some goodies, steep up your fave robust-tasting tea and say “Farewell” to another Summer.
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