*** Smoky Tea + Orange Caramel ***
Lapsang souchong is a black tea known for its smoky taste. That distinctive flavor comes from the last step in a lengthy preparation process: after tea leaves are harvested, they are dried, rolled, fermented, pan-fried, and finally smoked over wood-fires. For this flavor, we blend a light milk chocolate in with the tea in the base — it sort of reminds us of drinking hot cocoa by a campfire! The homemade orange caramel is a bright citrusy note to make this flavor upbeat for summer. We zest and juice loads of fresh oranges for this sauce, and we think it’s a fun and tangy balance to the smokiness of the tea base.
Lapsang souchong originates from the Fujian province on the Southeast coast of China, specifically in the Wuyi Mountains. Local legend traces the tea’s origin back to the 1600s. It is said that Qing dynasty armies passing through the Wuyi area caused a delay in the drying of tea leaves one year. When tea producers tried to take a shortcut and dry the leaves quickly with the aid of fire, they discovered that a smoky, piney, new delicacy had been born. The popularity of lapsang souchong soon took off, particularly in Europe, where it has had some rather famous admirers. Sir Winston Churchill is said to have favored it for his afternoon tea, and it was nearly the drink of choice for Captain Jean-Luc Picard. When Patrick Stewart was told that his Star Trek character was a tea-drinker, he thought the Captain’s preferred brew should be lapsang souchong. However, the show’s producers worried that viewers would be unfamiliar with the smoky tea, so the part went to Earl Grey instead.
Art by Nicole E.
*** This Pretty Planet ***
At Wild Scoops, we feel strongly about not using artificial colors in our ice cream, so we had sort of given up hope of ever making anything blue — a color not often found in edible crops — until we discovered butterfly pea flower tea! The flowers of the butterfly pea plant, Clitoria ternatea, can be white or yellow, but the most attention-grabbing are an intensely deep shade of blue. This ice cream starts with a light blue vanilla butterfly pea base, and we throw in green matcha almond cookies for scoops that look like little earths.
Butterfly pea flowers have been used in herbal teas in Thailand and Malaysia for centuries. The taste of the tea is earthy, somewhat reminiscent of green or chamomile tea. In Thailand, it is served both hot and iced, often with honey and lemongrass. (We added honey and lemongrass to our ice cream too, but we think those flavors are quite subtle) It is only recently that the tea has become more widespread beyond its native range, and what has garnered this interest is another amazing property: they are natural pH indicators. This means that when you change your tea’s level of acidity – by adding a squeeze of lemon, for instance – your drink will change color. (Try dropping some lemon juice or syrup atop your ice cream and mix around!)
*** Banana Pops ***
These pops are fun, simple and dairy-free. All ages love them! We start with organic bananas, chop in half and poke onto a stick (cool sticks, right!), freeze, dip in chocolate and top with various crunchy items. Some of the bananas have pistachios, some have toasted coconut, some have oreos, and some have sprinkles! We hope to continue offering different banana pops throughout the summer. They’re perfect for when you want something light and fruity.
We are so grateful that you could join us in the Adventure Club this year! We expect that some of these flavors and treats will go on to become regulars in the Wild Scoops repertoire!