Friday, 12 November 2010

of loquats and tea

a lone loquat

I do not come by loquats very often, so when I discovered a stall selling them at the market last weekend I immediately pounced. Generally appearing in springtime, fresh loquats are delicate and refreshing, and to me, they are like a cross between plums and pears in both taste and texture. A little tart, a little sweet. The riper they are, the sweeter.

I prefer them peeled, but the skin is edible too, and is actually not bad - similar to the skin of apricots. There isn't a lot of flesh, as they have seeds inside which take up quite a bit of room. I love the sweet ones just as they are, and for the ones that are a little more acidic, I think they work well simply poached in syrup, or stewed into a jam.

a peeled loquat

The weather has started to warm up in the last few weeks of spring here in Australia, so I decided to make a simple loquat tea just to see what it would be like.

iced loquat tea

freshly brewed tea (I used white tea)
loquats
honey, to taste

Simply whiz the loquats in a blender and add it along with some honey to freshly brewed tea. You can have it hot, or chill for a few hours and serve cold. I also added a few little chunks of loquat as well for a bit of bite. I made the tea a fairly mild brew so as not to overpower the taste of the loquats, and as an estimate I used the juice/puree of two loquats for approximately every 250ml cup's worth of brewed tea.

iced loquat tea with little chunks of loquat

While it didn't blow me away, I thought this made a pleasant and refreshing drink. The healthy combination of loquats and tea had a surprisingly distinct taste which reminds me of sweet Chinese herbal beverages. It was a warm sunny evening when I had this, and it really cooled me down!

19 comments:

  1. I can do without the ice now...a warm soothing cup of loquat tea will do me good now, in the cool weather.

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  2. I used to have a loquat tree in my backyard when I was small. I dont like the peels either. But the tea sounds yummy :)

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  3. try making loquat chutney next time. But I do like the sound of this drink as well.

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  4. tigerfish - I am thinking the differences in what we eat will be even more pronounced as I step in to summer and you to winter!

    Indie.Tea - fruit teas in the backyard are the best!

    Thanks Penny! I only wish the loquat season lasts longer here so I can experiment more...

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  5. Very soothing ice tea for the current weather. I must make a cuppa soon.

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  6. There is a loquat tree loaded with fruit at the moment that I walk past on the way to the train station. I try and grab a handful. But when I get home, there are three good ones, all the rest have been pecked out by the damn birds!!

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  7. damn, we used to have a loquot tree at our old house. though now we have a small orchid of other fruits at least. =)

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  8. Would love to see you post something made with some of your home-grown fruits Al! :D

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  9. Hi Leaf, Thanks for stopping by KyotoFoodie the other day and commenting! I think this is the first time I have come across your site. Nice work! I like tea and I like loquats, we get them here in Japan in late spring and early summer. I have never thought of combining tea and loquats together, though they do sound like an intriguing combination. I will give this a try next spring. Thanks!

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  10. Oh, you might like this KF article about loquat confection:

    http://kyotofoodie.com/wagashi-loquat-biwa-namagashi/

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  11. Thanks Michael! It's always great to learn more about the food in Japan! :)

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  12. I adore loquats - it took me forever to learn their real name, as my grandmother called them 'mushmoola' and I only ever saw them in her backyard, they really are an underutilised fruit

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  13. They seem to have a really short season too, and they're not very ubiquitous, which doesn't help. But yeah, loquats are definitely something that I'd love to utilise more!

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  14. Maybe because they are so sweet there, loquats are very popular in Lebanon but never make it to anything past eating them fresh and in season! Like your idea of the tea ( I have seen loquats incorporated into a tagine at an Algerian blogger's page)

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  15. Oh, an abundance of sweet fresh loquats would be so good to have! And I like the idea of incorporating them in tagine too.

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  16. Hi, I live on Maui in Hawaii and the older Japanese women make Loquat tea but it isn't made from the fruit, it's make from the leaves. It's yummy and good for the tummy too. Also it works like an aspirin and is very anti-inflammatory. So all you who didn't get the fruit before the birds, pick up the dried leave and use about 3 tbls. for one cuppa. Just add hot water and let steep for a few minutes. 5 grams for 4 cups. I just picked up the leaves (dried) an made a wonderful cuppa myself. Add sweetener as needed. mmmm.

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    Replies
    1. Hey, thank you so much for your comment, The Bixter. I'll keep that in mind next time I have some loquat leaves. :)

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