Having selflessly worked through every brand of tea South Africa has to offer I can confirm that, should you ever find yourself in the Rainbow Nation, then Woolworths Extra Strong teabags are your best bet for a really sturdy cuppa.
Another tip I’ve learnt is that when ordering tea in restaurant, it pays to specify that you mean English breakfast tea. Otherwise you will invariably end up with a cup of rooibos (or as it is often sold in England, red bush tea).
Now I don’t actually mind rooibos although in my opinion it is pretty horrible with milk. It’s subtler in flavour than English tea. More herbal in style with notes of honey and caramel.
This makes rooibos brilliant for cooking with. Try soaking dried fruits in rooibos when making a cake or infuse it in custard to serve with a fruit compote.
Better still make these simple yet elegant pots de creme – the rooibos and brown sugar combine to add a delicious toffee sweetness to these rich little French-style desserts.
Rooibos and Brown Sugar Pots de Creme (adapted from Chefdruck)
- 500ml pouring cream
- 2 tsp vanilla paste
- 100g demerara sugar
- 1 rooibos teabag
- 6 egg yolks
- shortbread biscuits to serve
1. Preheat the oven to 150C/130C fan. Heat the cream, vanilla and sugar with the teabag until just simmering. Remove from the heat and set aside to infuse for 15 minutes. Strain to remove the teabag.
2. Beat the egg yolks then slowly add the cream mixture to the eggs whilst whisking. Divide the mixture between 6 small ramekins. Place the ramekins in an ovenproof dish and fill the dish with freshly boiled water, so that the water comes half way up the sides of the ramekins. Cover with foil and bake for 35 minutes until the edges of the pots de creme are set but the centre still wobbles a little.
3. Chill for a couple of hours before serving with shortbread biscuits for dipping.