Lemon Tea


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Postby Elly » Mar 20th, '06, 02:08

Yes I've seen those too. You have to be very, very careful with ingesting essential oils. Some bottles say "not for internal use" some say "for topical use only."

For ingesting, they must be food grade (I've seen that term searching the net), and I've seen "for dietary use" on some bottles. Also, they are highly concentrated.
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Postby PeteVu » Mar 20th, '06, 11:08

lemon is such a common household ingredient, and ever so simple to add to your tea. why not just add fresh lemon to your favorite tea?
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Postby yresim » Mar 21st, '06, 01:53

PeteVu wrote:lemon is such a common household ingredient, and ever so simple to add to your tea. why not just add fresh lemon to your favorite tea?

As said, fresh lemon itself (or lemon juice, more accurately) is not what is added to lemon teas, and, therefore, would produce a slightly different flavor.

The oil, found in the peels/zest, is the thing that flavors lemon teas. Citrus oil is very powerful (it can even eat through plastic), so only a very small amount is needed to provide a very strong flavor.

Of course, it is all a matter of personal taste. Some might prefer fresh lemon juice, others might like lemon zest, others might like dried peels, and still others might prefer a drop of the pure citrus oil.

By all means, if you prefer fresh lemon, use that.

Of course, I suppose that budget and lifestyle also make a difference. For example, lemon zest would probably be far easier to come by than citrus oil. However, if you are one of those types that rarely-if-ever has fresh fruits and vegetables lying around the house, food-grade citrus oil would probably be far more cost-effective.

~Yresim~
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Postby PeteVu » Mar 21st, '06, 10:54

so then use lemon rind if you prefer that taste. I dont know why anyone would prefer anything over fresh ingredients in their tea. The whole point of the other flavor addatives is just to simulate fresh taste IMO.
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Postby yresim » Mar 22nd, '06, 19:11

PeteVu wrote:The whole point of the other flavor addatives is just to simulate fresh taste IMO.

I believe that the point is actually to produce a flavor that the drinker enjoys.

PeteVu wrote:so then use lemon rind if you prefer that taste. I dont know why anyone would prefer anything over fresh ingredients in their tea.

My concern with using fresh lemon peel, as I said, is that the pith itself is quite bitter, and may impart more flavor to the tea than it does after it is dried. For this reason, it might be better to use a non-fresh ingredient.

To be perfectly honest, I'm not sure why anyone who drinks tea would have a problem with the mere concept of dried or preserved additives. Tea itself is not exactly fresh. I'm sure that, if you were to go pick a leaf straight from a tea plant, and steep it right away, it would not taste like the teas we drink. I don't know whether or not it would taste good, but I am sure it would taste different.

As for the oil, have you ever added vanilla extract to anything? Or eaten and enjoyed something that contained vanilla extract?

When you add dried citrus peels (or citrus zest) to something, it is the citrus oil that the zest releases which imparts flavor to the tea (or the soup, or whatever you might be eating/drinking).

So a good quality citrus oil is actually far closer to zest/dried peel than, say, vanilla extract is to the vanilla bean. And, if one has a good source for citrus oil, it will produce a more reliable flavor, because you don't have to worry about the seasonal quality of the lemons, or mistakes made when zesting/drying.

The purpose of this discussion was to find ways that the original poster could replicate the flavor she enjoyed so much in the past. It was not to say that people who use one method are superior to those who use another.

In fact, I think it is pure folly to ever say such a thing with regards to taste. Every person's tastes are different, and what works for one person may not work for another.

To each his own, as I always say. You are, once again, welcome to never use citrus oil, or dried peels, or any such thing. I don't believe anyone trying to make you do anything (despite the fact that you seem determined to make others agree with your preferences).

Just as I have not insulted your taste by insinuating or stating that fresh ingredients are nasty, I would rather you not insinuate that someone else has bad taste if they enjoy citrus oil more than lemon juice. Naturally, some people are going to prefer one flavor over another (just as in all things). Just because you prefer a particular flavor, doesn't mean you are better than someone who prefers something else.

I, for one, enjoy beef jerky, pu-erh tea, freeze-dried ice cream, pickles, and any number of other "not fresh" ingredients. Many of these, I enjoy far more than their fresh equivalents. But I don't rail against those that would eat a pint of ice cream, for example.

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Postby PeteVu » Mar 23rd, '06, 10:23

agreed.

fyi: you never add pith when a recipie calls for lemon zest.
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