* Prices may differ from that shown
This review is for Yogi Tea - Licorice Egyptian Spice.
17 teabags (1.8g) each wrapped in paper to keep the flavour fresh
I bought these from Holland and Barratt on a buy one get one half price deal which, at £2.40 each, worked out at £1.80 each. Each tea bag costs just under 11p each, which, for a quality brew is a good deal.
The packaging is very stylish. It's a treat to choose which one to buy. I love the warm orange of this box and the illustration of Egyptian hyroglifics and an Egyptian is quote charming. I like the way there are images of orange peel, cinnamon, ginger, liquorice, black pepper, roasted chicory, barley malt, cloves and vanilla which are the ingredients as stated on the back.
Opening the cellophane wrapping from the box isn't too bad, bit fiddly but not impossible but worth it when you get to open the box containing the treasure of pale orange paper bags. I like that they are 'pressure sealed' on the edges rather than using glue. Simple illustrations of filling a cup with boiling water then adding the bag to infuse for 7 minutes before enjoying are very clear.
The only thing I do not like is that Yogi still use staples in their bags and the tags to attach the string. Other brands use knots and I would prefer if these guys did the same.
Ok - the flavour. Well, Liquorice has got to be my MOST favourite with ginger coming a close second. This tea does not disappoint! If you are trying to lose weight and keep off the sugar, this tea is perfect! I NEVER feel like a biscuit or cake with herbal tea - that's just wrong. A cup of coffee or black tea absolutely but not this.
I know it says to infuse for 7 minutes but I like to leave it for 10 or more. I know some people say to add a drop of cold water but that just stops the infusion process. I like to savour the wait.
Do you remember chewing on a piece of liquorice twig as a child? I do and I loved it, until it got all squishy and it made me want to gag! The beauty of this tea is that you get the delicious flavour of the liquorice as fresh as if it were the twig but with out the nastiness! There is also that lovely sweet aftertaste from the liquorice too. The ginger is just hovering in the background, holding the flavours up but not overpowering them. Just gorgeous.
There is another downside, however, I don't think this particular flavour is as strong as some of the others. I have used a small mug (bone China, of course!) and the tea is not strong enough to top up when half way down. This is always a bonus with herbal teas but I'll let it go this once as the flavour is just so lovely.
Yogi Tea Licorice Egyptian Spice Organic Ayuredic Spice Infusion
17 tea bags 30.6g box
Contains: Licorice, cinnamon, ginger, orange peel, cardamom, black pepper, roasted chicory, barley malt, cloves, orange extract, vanilla extract.
Soil Association Certified Organic
Note included on the packet: "Contains licorice - people suffering from hypertension should avoid excessive consumption."
The box is an orange coloured rectangular box similar in size and shape to other tea products. It currently features a golden chalice and some of the herbs in the infusion. Each bag is enclosed in an individual envelope.
Having learnt the dangers of junk food when my daughter was small as she had food allergies. Having previously learnt the benefits of herbalism from an old country person, I have continued to balance my diet with plenty of healthy foods and the odd naughty treat! However, what is most interesting is if you cut out the saturated fats, burgers etc, your body stops craving them and learns to love the good things. Lecture over.
Herbal and healthy teas though were something I did not enjoy, I would have the odd camomile tea to help with the menstrual time and the occasional peppermint tea to aid indigestion, but more often than not, I'd buy them, try them and throw the almost full box out a year later! Sound familiar?
Why I tried it:
Well, increasingly, either my palate has changed or herbal teas and infusions have improved no end? I suspect a bit of both, but mostly herbal teas have improved in the same way that organic veg has. Additionally, I found that I have a caffeine intolerance and changed to decaf coffee and then gave it up all together. So over the last few years I have managed to drink a whole box of 20 bags of various teas in place of black tea or coffee.
A few years ago I was very ill and needed a pick me up. I was trying everything I could that was healthy and legal to improve my health, get me well and give me some energy. One of the things I read of that would do me good was proper herbal licorice. On a trip to Holland and Barrett I spotted this tea and decided to give it a try. I had many years earlier used licorice to heal a stomach ulcer, so was keen to utilise it again.
Open an individually wrapped tea bag, place into a nice china cup or your best mug and pour over boiling water, enjoy the delicious smells as they rise and fuse and develop. I believe this is the first part of enjoying this tea. I tend to leave the bag in to get every bit of goodness out of the brew. It is ready to drink after it has infused for about 4 minutes and has cooled a bit. As mentioned if you really do not enjoy the unique blend of flavours, try adding a spoonful of honey. Local is best as it helps boost your immunity in your local environment.
Why you should try it:
Do not be tempted to try a different brand. If you have already tried a different brand forget that bad experience, buy it, try it, if you don't like it, put a spoonful of honey or sugar in it and persevere.
The main ingredient 38% is licorice. Licorice is, as already mentioned used in ancient and modern medicine in the treatment of stomach ulcers as well as indigestion and constipation. It is believed to be a liver tonic, to aid healing and boost the body's immune system. Used in some cough and cold treatments to aid healing, it is more than an interesting sweet.
The next two ingredients are Cinnamon and Ginger. Cinnamon and ginger are both ancient spices known for their digestive and slimming properties. Cinnamon is widely used in Eastern cuisine in both sweet and savoury applications and ginger is especially widely used in Thailand and China as well as the Caribbean. Cinnamon is believed to be a kidney tonic and is used in the treatment of herpes. Ginger is used to treat indigestion and constipation and is a useful remedy for travel sickness, both are considered a warming herb.
The other ingredients are obviously chosen for their healing or flavouring properties to compliment the main ingredients.
Yogi Teas are a high quality organic range available from good health food stores.
If you are looking at this as a health tonic, do please consult your GP, I strongly believe that this product helped me recover fully and faster and I recommend it - but along side conventional medicine.
Pregnant women need to take care with Licorice, but I guess you would have to dring an awful lot of this tea for it to be a problem - don't risk it though.
The Wisdom of Ayurveda:
The elements of the universe manifest in a unique combination in every being. You need to maintain and restore your individual balance and that is one of the main principles of Ayurveda. Now obviously this is mass produced product, that cannot completely individually balance each individual, but I believe the claim that it is a carefully developed, produced and balanced product to help maintain the balance of many individuals. If this does not work for you, there is a small range of Yogi Tea's and by combining whichever one with what you crave - possibly local honey, you will come close to your bodies desire and health.
I often have a cup of this tea in the evening, sometimes to energise early evening to get through the end of the day and often to wind down before bed time to relax and balance mind and body. Occasionally I enjoy a cup during the day, but I am more likely to have green tea with lemon as a day time caffeine free pick me up.
So, as you might expect from a balancing product it works both as an energiser ad relaxant.
A box of 17 tea bags is about £2.00 - very reasonable for an organic product.
I have tried a number of yogi teas but this is my absolute favourite - it is sweet and warming - a good drink for bed time.
When you open the pretty packaging (also patterned on the inside - so can be used for card making if you're a crafter!), you will find the tea bags individually wrapped in paper sachets. But don't be fooled - the sachets aren't airtight so it's best to keep these in an airtight tub if you're going to keep them for a while. Each bag has a string and label attached which has a lovely motto on the back - a bit like a fortune cookie. There are quite a few different mottoes so you don't tend to get many duplicates in a packet.
The herbal tea itself is made with boiling water and you can leave the bag in to intensify the flavour if you want to. I find that I do not need to add milk or sugar as it is fine on its' own.
A few words of warning, though:
1) It is _very_ sweet.
2) I don't think it tastes like licorice - I hate black licorice but I LOVE the flavour of this drink!!
I am not a huge drinker of tea or coffee, mainly because too much caffeine makes me go a bit loopy! If I have a tea or coffee in the afternoon I can still feel the effects in the evening and have real difficulty falling asleep. This is the case even with soft drinks like coke and on occasions where I've forgotten and had a coke with my evening meal I will spend the best part of the night frustrated at not being able to drop off!
As the nights close in and become much colder I do find myself reaching for hot drinks and I tend to opt for either a hot chocolate or a herbal tea. I like teas that have a minty/aniseedy flavour as I find them light, refreshing and quite cleansing. I usually opt for the Twinings range of teas but a colleague at work brought a few samples of Yogi Licorice tea for me to try as she thought I would like them. I'd never come across the brand before but reading the details on the box this sounded right up my street and I couldn't wait to give these a try!
The Licorice tea comes in a bright orange box with an ornate Egyptian cup on the front, which is decorated with a statue and hieroglyphics. Surrounding the cup are some of the herbs and spices that have gone into the infusion, which include licorice, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger and orange peel. The packaging is colourful and in my opinion stands out from the crowd. Each box contains 15 tea bags and I picked this up in Holland and Barretts for £2.15. For only 15 tea bags I did think that this was a little on the expensive side. The Yogi tea brand was established in 1969 at a time where the world was on the move and there was a great exchange of cultures.
The box states that the tea is an organic Ayurvedic spice infusion. There are some interesting facts on the box about some of the main ingredients particularly licorice root which I learnt has been treasured for centuries by many ancient cultures for its natural sweetness and rich flavour. In fact licorice was held in such high esteem by the ancient Egyptians that there were small bundles found in the tomb of Tutankhamon's tomb for him to enjoy in the afterlife!
I was curious about some of the ingredients in the tea and their properties so I did a little research of my own. Licorice is an expectorant, which facilitates the removal of mucas from the lungs by coughing. It can also increase blood pressure and this effect can be significant if you take in an excess of licorice, typically around 50g a day. There is a warning on the box that people suffering from hypertension should avoid excessive consumption. Cinnamon is a sweet, warming spice that also has various health benefits including as an antiviral agent. Ginger aids digestion as does cardomom.
On opening the box the first thing that hit me was the strong, sweet 'minty' smell that came out of it. It smelt absolutely lovely and I couldn't wait to brew myself a cuppa! Each of the tea bags is individually wrapped in a white and orange wrapper, which makes them easy to carry around with me. I like to keep some tea bags in my purse to take to work with me so the fact that they are individually wrapped is really handy. I store the teas in their box in one of my cupboards and it leaves my cupboard smelling delicious!
Making a cuppa is really easy, although slightly more time consuming than a normal cup of tea. Place a bag in a cup and add on boiling water. Leave to brew for 7 minutes and then enjoy. I tend to leave mine for up to 10 minutes as I like a slightly stronger flavour but that is a matter of individual taste. You can also add sweetener or creamer at this point but I prefer it as it is. Once brewed the tea is a light brown/orange colour and smells absolutely divine!
Taking my first sip I was surprised that given the strong smell it didn't particularly taste of anything! I could detect hints of cinnamon and ginger and also some citrusness from the orange peel. As I swallowed though the top of my mouth and the back of my tongue were flooded with the beautiful, sweet and aniseedy taste of licorice. It was absolutely delicious. Each sip I took worked in the same unusual way - I would only taste the tea after I'd swallowed! I usually have a cup of this after my evening meal to warm me up and aid digestion.
Overall this tea has become a firm favourite of mine. I love the sweet, aromatic taste of the tea and the unusual way in which this tea brings out its flavours in my mouth. I do think this is a little expensive for only 15 bags but given how good it tastes it is something I am happy to splash out for. I have only seen these in Holland and Barrett and not in any of the main supermarkets. There are some other interesting flavours in the Yogi tea range, which I shall be trying out in due course. This Licorice tea comes with a high recommendation from me.
~ Introduction ~
I am very keen on avoiding junk food in my life and try to incorporate lots of good food. Having said that, it's not always accomplished on a daily basis, so I make sure that at least once a day my body gets some natural plant treatment, which is more than likely will be in the form of a heartwarming, steaming cup of herbal tea which I often have just before going to bed or just after waking up. It also occasionally serves me as the ultimate wind down experience, a rare me-time or some relaxing moments shared with an intimate friend.
~ Why Yogi Tea Spice Infusions? ~
I've tried many varieties of herbal infusions from Twinings to various supermarket brands which apart from being caffeine-free don't have any other special benefits - they only smell good but have a disappointly watery taste, so I doubt there's any real health benefits to them all compared to healing teas that at least contain enough herbs and in such concentration that it actually has healing properties for one or other ailment. Talking about infusions, having tried a range of special purpose teas - sleep well, digestion, detox - these do have a lot of health benefits but their taste is often bitter and a bit on the 'medication' side even if you added sugar / honey to taste.
Then I spotted the Yogi Tea range in Holland & Barrett which is my regular snack stop shop - and thought I'd give it a try. The Licorice variety seemed to fulfill both criteria I was after: various spicy herbs packed with healthy benefits that are great tasting too!
~ Health benefits ~
You probably now spices are generally used in herbal infusions to aid digestion and act as a tonic for the liver which means it makes the liver work for you at a more optimum rate. Here I picked three widely and lesser known herbs and list some of their health benefits you'll be getting from Egyptian Spice.
The sweet roots of this Mediterranean shrub have been used since ancient times across Asia by the Chinese and the Mediterranean by the Greek and known for its therapeutic properties.
Licorice root has been shown to have extraordinary healing properties. It soothes digestive and urinary tracts, helps heal stomach ulcers, relieves coughs and sore throats. It has been found to lower blood cholesterol levels even treat chronic hepatitis by boosting the immune system and stimulating production of protective compounds. Being a source of the female hormone estrogen, it helps regulate hormone production in women.
Licorice is a great enmollient agent and is used in a lot of cosmetics. It can be used to treat atopic dermatitis (eczema)
as it helps reduce inflammation, itching and burning of the skin. It also supresses too much oil production of the scalp.
Licorice is a potent herb and in excess can cause serious side effects including high blood pressure, edema and low blood salt levels. Don't be alarmed though, high doses mean in a capsule form consumed in excess and for more than 4 - 6 weeks. Licorice preparations should be avoided during pregrancy.
Cinnamon is the oldest known spice and is made from the bark of the cinnamon tree native to India, Sri Lanka, Brazil, Vietnam and Egypt.
Traditionally used in cooking as a flavouring it is believed to improve digestion. Scientific studies have shown its
antibacterial and antifungal properties. There's research currently under way where it has been found to regulate blood sugar levels. Cinnamon apparently slows the rate at which the sugar from the digested food is absorbed from the stomach
to the blood.
External use: aromatherapy
Compounds found in cinnamon and come from the bark irritate the skin so cinnamon oil should never be applied directly on the
skin. It can be used however by diffusing it as an aromatherapy oil in the air. Avoid excess amount of cinnamon if pregnant.
Chicory is a fibrous vegetable consumed by humans and as an animal feed and its root is mostly known and used as a coffee substitute though it's little known but powerful health benefits are also worth noting.
It is known to cleanse the blood and improve liver function. Firstly it helps remove toxins from it, secondly it
increases bile flow so more fats can be broken down therefore it aids digestion. It also acts as a mild laxative and diuretic (removes excess water).
No side effects are known when consumed though it can cause occupational contact dermatitis when handled at plant growers.
~ The brew ~
I pour just boiled water on the teabag and leave for approximately five minutes to soak. Spices need slighly longer brewing time as they come from hard or fibrious parts of the plants and therefore need to soften to release their flavour and beneficial contents. Egyptian Spice is a toning, energizing and soothing blend of cinnamon, ginger, orange peel, cardamom, black pepper chicory root, barley malt and cloves. I would describe the taste as exotic where cinnamon and ginger are the dominating aromas with a slight citrusy taste. All in all, a very exotic, oriental blend that is potent, strong smelling and strong tasting. It is so much so that if you leave the bag in for longer, the more bitter, gingery taste you'll get in your brew, so if you like it milder, make sure you remove the teabag. Compared to supermarket spice infusions, the taste is definitely superior. Licorice is an excellent flavouring as it is 50 times sweeter than sugar! No amount of sugar or honey needed in this brew, the licorice is loud and clear, a taste that takes a few seconds to register on your tongue though.
~ Yogi Tea Varieties ~
Ayurvedic Spice Infusion is just one family in the Yogi Tea range. There are six herbal tea variations including Mexican and Jamaican Spice as well as one Rooibos, one green and one black tea spice blend.
Specialised blends include: Stomach-Ease, Bedtime, Detox and Women's Energy (I could do with this one!)
I've just noticed there's a yoga exercise printed on the side inside the packet.
~ Conclusion ~
Egyptian Spice is a fairly rich spice blend which is caffeine-free, yeast-free and organic. It is a wind-down tea though in a way it has a double effect in that you'll fee relaxed and at the same time refreshed, energized. I noticed when I had it before bedtime I stayed up longer and didn't feel as tired as usual when going to bed. Due to its price I only have it occasionally myself or sharing it with a friend.
If you're not keen on herbal teas because of their unpleasant or bitter taste, I highly recommend trying these if you like the sound of the spices but also want the health benefits not just the nice smell of spiced infusions.
~ Price / where to buy ~
Holland & Barett and online from http://www.goodnessdirect.co.uk at £1.82 / 15 bags
Thanks for reading.
©powered by lillybee also posted on Ciao! UK
Brand: Yogi Tea / Herbal Tea