Steeping: Spicy Chocolate Matcha Tea Recipe

Two thoughts have taken over my mind. Here’s the first: If one grows up cheering for Cinderella and booing the awful step-mother and her daughters, then later in life one comes to recognize in their own reflection the calculating spitefulness that they had loathed in the three ridiculous characters that made another’s life unnecessarily difficult, what does one do? Does one pretend to be blind to their own meanness or make up logical excuses to justify their cruelty or even put on a fake mask of benevolence? Or does one seek the courage to sort out their fears and remember that it is far easier to loath the evil that others do, but extremely difficult to admit to our own wickedness, and even more challenging to practice a better way of living.

The second thought is as such: Just because one can see the potential of another, if the other  continues to act lowlier than their capability, must one continue to suffer them? And if one continues to suffer them is that not enabling their meanness? Thus encouraging more unnecessary pain into a world that could use less? After all, Dumbledore said “It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” And Maya Angelou said, “When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time,” and “I not only have the right to stand up for myself, but I have the responsibility. I can’t ask somebody else to stand up for me if I won’t stand up for myself.” And also  “One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential. Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.” 

I hope these thoughts can be of some use to you in situations where it seems easier to be cruel. Or in events where it appears easier to keep hugging yourself on the ground as another continues to kick you in the gut. Don't just wait there for a fairy godmother, try and fight back, too. 

Now to the real matter: spicy chocolate matcha! Blending tea is one of the things that gets me excited about the days. Coming up with a new tea blend is a wonderful mysterious process that I especially enjoy because I never know when a recipe will be ready. For instance, I've been working on this recipe all month and just when I thought I had got it, I was inspired to add one more ingredient, matcha. Then, I realized the previous blend had been incomplete but now it is ready. I hope you will find this sweet-spicy and fragrant tea––my first blend of the year––delicious and encouraging of the approaching spring. Here is the recipe: 

Spicy Chocolate Matcha Recipe (for an 18 ounce pot)
1 tbsp loose green tea 
1 tbsp whole chamomile 
1/4 tsp 100% (unsweetened) cacao powder  
1/4 tsp matcha 
1/4 tsp cumin 
1/4 tsp black pepper 
1/2 star anise (just the half should do—unless you’re a super fan) 
About 2 inches cinnamon stick 
Prep: 
+ Put about 18 oz of water to boil 
+ Mix green tea and whole chamomile together in a small bowl 
+ Add cacao, matcha, cumin, black pepper and mix well 
+ Lightly crush star anise and cinnamon stick, add to tea and mix 
+ Carefully put tea into a strainer and into your teapot 
+ Pour hot water through the strainer of tea into your teapot until the water climbs onto the top of tea 
+ Let tea steep for at least five minutes before drinking 
Tip: A second, milder, pot can be made from the tea.

And now here’s some music that goes well with this tea:  

º Somi  |  Ginger me Slowly
º 張靚穎  |  故長安 
º Jeanne Cherhal  |  Ces mots stupides  
º Jojo Abot  |  Le le le 
º 譚維維  |   永夜
º Coralie Clément  |  L’ombre et la lumière 
º Mongo Santamaria  | Afro Blue

Find the playlist on YouTube as Spicy Chocolate Matcha 

Xx
JAO



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