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Personally, I enjoy both coffee & tea but some greatly prefer one over the other for different reasons. It could be simply for the taste, for the caffeine amount or the ease of making it. As we are a tea store, we mainly focus on tea benefits but it is informative to compare the two most consumed morning drinks in America. There are benefits to both coffee and tea as can be seen in the interesting facts below. Enjoy the benefit face off!

 

The average American coffee drinker drinks 70 gallons of coffee per year while the average American tea drinker drinks 10 gallons of tea per year.

 

An 8 fl oz. cup of coffee contains 75-100 mg of caffeine while an 8 fl oz. cup of tea contains 0-40 mg of caffeine.

 

Coffee is greatly studied to show decreased risk of Alzheimer’s Disease in consumers while tea is greatly studied to show decreased stress in consumers.

 

Coffee has been linked to protection against Type 2 diabetes while tea has been linked to protection against stoke & heart disease.

 

Topically, brewed coffee can add a glossy shine to your hair while the tannin’s in tea work well on puffy eyes.

 

 

Thank you to the mayoclinic, medicaldaily, naturalivingideas and teasource for this information.

 

-Alexis

 

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We haven’t even reached Halloween yet but we are extremely excited to tell you that we now have Christmas Crackers available for your purchase. It’s never too early to stock up on them as gifts or for yourself! And it’s also never to early to talk about Christmas!

 

What are Christmas Crackers?

I had no idea what a Christmas Cracker was before the English Tea Store starting selling them! But I am so happy I now know because they make such easy, inexpensive & fun gifts that all ages will love.

They were invented (by accident) by a man named Tom Smith in 1847. That means this tradition has been around for over 150 years! A cracker, pictured below, is a small cardboard tube wrapped in beautiful Christmas paper. Two people hold on either side of the tube to “pop” it. Next the cardboard turns into a hat for you to strut around in, a small gift, a balloon and a saying/joke. The “joke” is usually so laughable because they really are not that funny. The tradition is to crack them open after Christmas dinner.

Image result for christmas crackers

Tom Smith eventually started making Crackers for more seasons because they were so popular! Something that makes crackers so special is that they are made by hand.

 

 

Here at ETS, we have crackers for all ages. There are crackers for adults & kids.

 

Christmas Crackers for Kids:

Christmas Crackers for Adults:

 

We also carry a large variety of Pudding Lane Crackers! If you’re planning on having a Christmas party this festive season, they would make for perfect party favors! Or even pick one up for each member of your family for an inexpensive & fun tradition to start.

 

-Alexis

 

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If you’re looking for a tea to help with stomach pain, sore throats, antioxidants or anything specific, this is a great brand for you. Especially as cold season is coming around from the weather change nothing is better than a hot cup of tea.

Yogi Bhajan was a yoga teacher with lovely holistic ways. He was a believer of yoga/herbs/etc. in helping aid the practice of peaceful living. His name and his practice of yoga began the interest in “Yogi” as a tea brand.

 His teas are made to help you to feel “vibrant and alive” and each have different benefits.

It was not until 1984 that the Yogi Tea Company began its journey to be one of the greatest tea sellers. His teas began to show up in natural food stores in Southern California and Europe.

 

“FEEL GOOD, BE GOOD, DO GOOD”

 

As like other tea companies we have mentioned, Yogi continues to support national and global causes. They pride themselves in aiding small businesses.They also partner with Pearl Buck Center, which is a non-profit organization for vocational training to adults with disabilities. There are so many other great Projects that they donate to and help daily that you can read about here.

Yogi now sells over 60 brands of tea and we at tea store carry some of the most popular!

Top Sellers Here at ETS:

 

Stomach Ease Caffeine Free Tea

 

Yogi Stomach Ease Caffeine Free Tea - 16 Tea Bags

 

  • All Organic
  • Promotes Digestive Health
  • Fennel Seed and Licorice
  • Addition of Peppermint
  • Cardamom, Coriander & Ginger
  • Compostable Tea Bags
  • Kosher
  • Suitable for Vegans
  • $5.99 / 16 Tea Bags

 

 

 

 

 

 

Green Tea Super Antioxidant

 

 

  • All OrganicYogi Super Antioxidant Green Tea - 16 Tea Bags
  • Reduces Aging, Pollution & Stress
  • Green Tea, Grapeseed & Amla
  • Potent Antioxidants
  • Citrus Flavor
  • Sweet Floral Notes
  • Kosher
  • Suitable for Vegans
  • $5.99 / 16 Tea Bags

 

 

 

 

 

And lastly, great for cold & flu season… Throat Comfort Tea

 

  • All Organic Herbal BlendYogi Throat Comfort Tea - 16 Tea Bags
  • Slippery Elm Bark & Mullein
  • Soothes Minor Throat Irritation
  • Wild Berry Bark & Licorice Root
  • Kosher
  • Suitable for Vegans
  • $5.99 / 16 Tea Bags

 

 

 

 

 

Stay tuned for next week where we dig into Taylor of Harrogate!

 

-Alexis

If you have ever had a Soreen Malt Loaf in the past and miss its soft, squidgy texture, you’re in luck! English Tea Store has become a supplier of these sticky little loaves. They are the most popular malt loaf in the UK and now they can be enjoyed right here in the US.

These scrummy malt loaves are loaded with sweet, juicy raisins to give you a burst of energy to keep you going for quite some time. Eat them however you like! Take them and slice them, toast them, and slather some butter on them! Or eat them cold with butter. Not a fan of butter? Then eat them plain. If you don’t have a knife with you, then you can just break these apart with your hands and enjoy as is. Some people enjoy Soreen with jam or even cheese! These loaves can also be used in a recipe, such as a trifle or a steamed pudding. You can do a lot with Soreen.

Our shop stores these loaves frozen, ready for shipment. Once ordered, they are shipped* through ground shipping on a Monday or a Tuesday and are usually expected to arrive in 3-5 days, depending on your location. The reason they are frozen is because they can defrost while they are in transit! By the time they arrive to their destination, the loaves should be defrosted. They are also shipped in threes, so when you purchase Soreen, you are buying three loaves and not just one! I think that would keep a few of us happy since one loaf isn’t going to be enough!

No matter how these loaves get to you, we are happy to be a new supplier of Soreen. Try with a cup of your favorite tea and share with your loved ones. Or have one loaf for yourself. We are happy to be spreading squidgy energy and malty goodness to the people of America!

-CD

 

*Soreen Malt Loaves do not qualify for any shipping promotions.

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Valentine’s Day is well known for celebrating love between two people. I feel Valentine’s Day isn’t just for lovers, but for friends and family, as well. After all, these are people you love and cherish. Why not show your love and appreciation for them? Try our selection of Valentine’s Day gifts that are sure to brighten up everyone you love!teagsmg1000037835_-00_a-stash-of-love-gift-set

If you have a tea loving friend or family member, while tea is a good gift, but why not an accessory or an essential? By essential, try a tea kettle or a teapot. One can never have too many of those? If one ever breaks, you can always have extra! As always, our English Tea Store teapots come in many colors and you can choose from 2 cup or 6 cup teapot!

Perhaps the person you love is from the other side of the Pond? Wouldn’t you like to give them a taste of Home? We’ve got our selection of British sweets and chocolate to start off with. Some of our most popular candies include the world famous melt-in-your-mouth Cadbury Dairy Milk and the gooey but heavenly sweet Walkers Toffee. Let your love show their patriotism with their favorite items featuring the Union Jack. Give them a travel mug to sip their tea from or let the world know where they’re from with they’re shopping bag. Or surprise your Across the Pond Honey with a flag of Home! Great Britain, Scotland, and plenty more! Hang it in the kitchen or living room, it will bring a smile!

You can always put a steasvbf1000033494_-00_the-romance-of-tea-valentine-gift-basket_2urprise package together but if you’re strapped for time, try our gift baskets. They’re easy, convenient, and best of all, there’s just about one for everyone! If you know someone who is a fan of mint, we have a mint tea time basket featuring chamomile tea, or someone who is just getting into tea, there is the English Tea Store basket, and then the Deluxe Afternoon Tea for the full English tea experience!

There’s just about something for everyone. Take a look around our site and check out all of our categories!

-CD

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

 

mince-pies

Nearly everyone loves pie, so when you hear about having pie during the holidays, it turns some heads. While beloved pies like apple and pumpkin are served during the holidays, mince pies are the true holiday crowd pleaser. Mince pies have been around since the 1600s and believe it or not, they were originally filled with actual meat! Love them or hate them, it’s not Christmas to many without a mince pie! In the US, not too many people have heard of mince pies or even know that they are a major part of the holidays but in the UK, it’s not Christmas without them. The mince (or mincemeat) is made of dried fruits, peels, bits of apple, along with distilled spirits like brandy, and spices.

In the UK, mince pies come in bite size and usually in packs of 6, 9 or 12. Sometimes the pies are decorated beautifully in pastry, with shapes like stars or holly cut into them. In the US, some markets sell what are dubbed as “mini” pies, because mincemeat pies are sold as a whole entire pie to cut and share. Suet, which is a type of animal fat, is also commonly used in many made-from-scratch mincemeat recipes.

When it comes to getting a mince pie fix, some simply go to the grocery store to pick up their mince pies. Others like to make their own by using either homemade or jarred mincemeat, and using either store bought pastry or pastry made from scratch. To make mini pies, some use muffin tins and for a large pie, others use a whole pie plate. Add just a dusting of powdered sugar and you’ve got yourself a nice holiday treat!

However, when it comes to popularity, mince pies are not too common in the United States. You won’t find them as easily as you would in the UK. It’s not a common part of the holiday tradition here as it is on the other side of the pond but you can always keep it going or even start it if you have not had them before!

-CD

I admit that summer is not my favorite season of the year. It’s too hot, too bright, and nearly everyone I know goes away on vacation. While I am stuck at home, there isn’t much to watch on TV, either. I’m stuck watching a bunch of reruns until they come back with new episodes…until late September or early October.

But for some, August is the best time of the year for television! Why? Because it’s The Great British Bake Off! Viewed by millions in the UK, it’s one of the most anticipated TV events of the year! In the US, the show is known as The Great British Baking Show. The premise of the show is to find the best amateur baker in all of Great Britain. At the beginning of each season, there are ten bakers who are to bake a Signature Challenge, a Technical Challenge, and a Showstopper Challenge. These are each judged on appearance and taste. The show is run for ten weeks, ten episodes, and each episode has a theme, like pastry, bread, or even gluten free. The bake-off takes place in a tent, most recently in Berkshire.

Watching this show inspires me to unleash my inner baker. Many of the recipes the competitors make all look so delicious and easy, but looks can be deceiving! I have tried for several years to make a perfect Victoria Sponge and it has been so difficult! It has taken a lot of training and patience! So, for the next few posts, I will explain how baking products are a bit different in the UK, baking temperatures, measuring, and more about the Great British Bake Off.

Put on the kettle, it’s going to be fun!

-CD

We all know and love Queen Elizabeth for her remarkable reign over Great Britain and the Commonwealth Realms. The world has watched her grow up from a graceful young princess to a strong and devoted Queen, leading her nation through the greatest and the most dreadful of times. On April 21, 2016, Queen Elizabeth II will reach yet another milestone: Her 90th birthday.

The Queen recently became the longest reigning monarch in 2015, ruling for over 63 years! Her husband, Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, has been by her side for her entire reign which began in 1952 after having been married since 1947. Not only is she a ruler of a kingdom but she’s also the ruler of a proud and growing family! She is the mother of four children, 8 grandchildren, and five great grandchildren as of this writing.

For her 90th birthday this year in 2016, it will go as normally planned with a few special additions. Her birthday is normally celebrated throughout the months of April, May, and June. For her official birthday on April 21st, the Queen usually spends her birthday in privacy but there are several gun salutes to mark the special day at noon. There are a few special engagements in April but in May, a major celebration will be held for the Queen. From May 12-15 will be celebrations every night featuring an over 90 minute joyous event that will celebrate her life, her love of horses, and her dedication to the Commonwealth and other international affairs. The event will feature over 900 horses and 1500 performers from all over the UK and the world! It will take place on the private grounds of Windsor Castle (this is the only the time the general public are allowed on the grounds) in a custom built arena! The Queen will attend on the final evening, May 15th.

In June, there will be more events marking the celebration. The Queen’s husband, Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, will also celebrate his 95th birthday on June 10th but on that day, there will be a special Thanksgiving service held in St. Paul’s Cathedral where invited guests will only be allowed. The next day is the Trooping of the Colour, which is known as the THE official celebration of the Queen’s birthday. A parade celebrating the Queen’s birthday is held, and she will stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, where many will try to catch a glimpse of her. On June 12, about 10,000 guests will attend the Patron’s Lunch at the Mall in London. This is to celebrate the many charities in which the Queen is patron of.

If you want to celebrate your own way, you can always enjoy a slice of cake or two, some scones with a bit of jam, or raise a cup of tea, possibly a good Buckingham Palace Garden Party, and enjoy it like how the Queen enjoys it: Milk, no sugar!

Happy Birthday, Your Majesty!

Here’s a bit of fun trivia about Queen Elizabeth for you:

  • Queen Elizabeth was affectionately called Lilibet by her family as a little girl.
  • She is a big fan of the Corgi dog. She has had over 30 of them as pets throughout her reign.
  • The Queen is an avid photographer, taking photos with her cameras over the decades. She has even photobombed someone’s selfie!
  • One big surprising fact about the Queen is that she served in the military during World War 2. She was 2nd Lieutenant Elizabeth Windsor. She even knows how to change spark plugs and flats tires (and the only member in the British Royal Family to do so).

-CD

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(c) Julia Briggs – English Tea Store

Well over here we are still on Easter holidays and the Easter eggs are half price!  The kids are still away from school and bored so having bought some little Easter eggs cheap I thought we could make some Easter Nests which, because it is after Easter, we will call Spring treats.

It is a macaroon mix and filled with chocolate spread and small egg.  The mixture makes about 16 nests.

You will need:

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon lemon or lime juice
  • 4 oz caster sugar
  • 6 oz coconut
  • 2 oz ground almonds
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon of chocolate spread and three little eggs for each nest
  • Oven 160 C  325 F Gs Mark 3
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(c) Julia Briggs – English Tea Store

Whisk the egg whites until stiff then add the lemon/lime juice and a little sugar and keep whisking.  Gradually add the remaining sugar and whisk until the mixture is shiny.  Fold in the coconut, almonds and vanilla.  Spoon the mixture into paper cases and make a small depression in each one.

Bake for 12 minute until set.  Cool on a wire rack and when slightly cool add a teaspoon of chocolate spread and three eggs to each.  The children had one still hot from the oven with a glass of milk but they go equally well with tea.

– JAB

IMG_5859Savoy Biscuits or Lady Finger cakes can be eaten alone – with a cup of tea – or used as the sponge in a trifle.  Remember we made a trifle with trifle sponges broken into pieces well you can use these if you like instead.  There are softer and soak up the alcohol better or you can just eat them as a little cake.  Either way they are quick to make and tasty.  The recipe is a fatless sponge one.

You will need:

  • Two baking sheets lined with parchment.  Set the oven at 190 C  Gas Mark 5  375 F
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 oz caster sugar
  • Vanilla Extract
  • 3 oz Plain Flour
  • A little icing sugar for dusting

You can use a piping bag with the end cut off and a plain nozzle in or you can just make them round by dropping a teaspoonful of the mixture onto the baking sheets.

We are using plain flour so we need to get as much air into the mixture as we can so start by separating the eggs and put the yolks and half the sugar in a mixer IMG_5852and beat well.  Whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks and then gradually and carefully add the remaining sugar.  Now put everything together and fold in the sieved flour.  Taking care not to knock the air out.  Put the mixture into a piping bag and pipe fingers onto your baking sheets.  Cook for only 15 minutes until firm to the touch and a nice colour, not too pale and not too brown.  Dust with the icing sugar and then place on a wire rack to cool completely.  They can be frozen for later use or stored in an airtight tin for a dew days.

Enjoy fresh from the oven with a cup of tea from our new English Tea Store sampler packs!

–JAB

 

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