I’ve been drinking a lot of tea lately while trying to avoid coffee. I find I sweeten my coffee far too much and the sugar just isn’t good for me, so I’ve tried to satisfy my desire for delightful warm, caffeinated beverages through my love of black tea. I am by no means a purist with my tea, as I do enjoy Strawberry tea with honey and lemon. I also enjoy green tea with a little honey. Now I know that honey is also a form of sugar, but I don’t seem to need very much to make my tea lovely.
Onto the almond milk.
As much as I enjoy honey, I’ve become a little bored of the same flavour all the time, so I looked into my fridge and assessed what I could try. Hot sauce seemed a little extreme and maple syrup seemed excessive. My eyes locked onto my almond milk and a plan was formed. Once I picked it up I thought about this advertisement that I hear often about non-dairy produces curdling in coffee so I googled recipes. Each recipe I read was for cold tea, but I didn’t want cold tea so I went for it anyways.
Now almond milk is not happy to be poured into steaming hot tea, it curdles, but if it is stirred it seems to disintegrate into the tea and there you are with a beautiful cup of creamy and nutty tea. I suspect it would work a little better with an iced tea, as you wouldn’t have to vigorously stir it, but nonetheless, it was quite enjoyable.
This also made me think about how I made my sleepy milk tea, which is boiling milk with cinnamon with a bag of decaf chai. It doesn’t curdle because it is not mixing with hot water from a cold state. Now some would argue that isn’t tea, but it is very similar to a Somalian tea I once had from a cafe in an old neighbourhood on a cold night. This teen boy was standing outside the cafe handing out free Somalian milk tea to anyone who passed to warm them up. It was hot milk with cinnamon, cloves and some other spices I couldn’t identify, but it was absolutely delicious.
So I tried brewing my tea directly in hot almond milk to see if it would work in a similar manner.
As it turns out, steeping tea in almond milk is a little too overpoweringly sweet and creamy for me. I think when I make a sleepy milk tea the dairy milk stays fairly thin, but this almond milk got so thick and creamy that it was harder to enjoy. Though if this were frozen and served as an ice cream flavour I think it would work well. So my end statement here is, almond is a good addition to tea, but not a great base for it.