Many a gardener takes a rest with a tasty cuppa but this set us thinking about the crops we can use to pick and make fresh infusions on site. This led to our supplementing our very lush crop of herbs and, then, to our second collaboration via the CCA’s ‘Cooking Pot’ Programme of events.  So, returning to the scene of our ‘Rise to the Occasion’ baking event at bakery47, we teamed up with the Tchai Ovna House of Tea, based in Glasgow’s West End to deliver an opportunity to experiment with flavour, using our herbs from our plots and suggested recipes from Martin, brought to life by Yura from Tchai Ovna.

Participants also got the chance to make their own infusions and we tried and tasted each others’ recipes, noting down the results as well as completing a questionnaire about our favourite tasting teas.  Our quick quiz yielded two clear winners who received a teapot and set of teas and lunch with tea at Tchai Ovna – a treat by anybody’s standards.

It was interesting to note differences in flavour from our three varieties of Lavender and how ingredients such as lemon zest or honey could really transform some of our recipes.  Varieties of Sage and Mint were popular too and the aroma of Chamomile was among my favourites along with bakery47 treats to accompany our morning of refreshment.

All in all we learned some useful tips for future blending and tasting sessions, discovering a blend that may be especially useful through the approaching winter.  Very many thanks go to all who supported our event – it was especially good to make new friends as well as seeing familiar faces.  Special thanks go to Sam, Anna and Hannah from bakery47 for providing our experimental taste-lab, to Viviana from CCA Glasgow for conceiving the ‘Cooking Pot’ season and major thanks to Martin and Yura of Tchai Ovna for skills in blending and for sharing expertise and sheer enthusiasm for our very pleasant new interest.  Afterwards we all returned to our usual activities – but, of course, only after a cup of our favourite tea. Tea-licious.