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The 7th TEA of Christmas is . . .

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Chocolate, Hazelnut & Strawberry Honeybush!

Tea Description: This is the very first Tea of the Week that I crafted as the Mad Tea Artist for 52Teas! It was originally crafted as our tea of the week for June 6, 2015 & since then, it's been reblended for our 2017 Holiday box - and now for our 2019 box! I'm kinda bursting with pride right now with the realization that the very first tea of the week is one that is so enjoyed that it keeps on coming back!

The previous description for this tea (which includes my original description for this tea) went like this: 

This tea is every bit as tasty as I remember the first batch tasting. Chocolate-y with a nice hazelnut note. Lovely strawberry sweetness. This one's so good that as I was taste testing it, Mat came across my half-consumed cuppa and finished it off in less than 7 seconds.

My original description went like this:

For this tea, I was inspired by the oh-so-decadent act of dipping strawberries into warm Nutella. (YUM!)

I started with my organic honeybush and added organic cacao shells and nibs; organic roasted, salted sunflower seeds (for that nutty appearance and just a hint of salt) and organic freeze-dried strawberries. The result is a quite fantastic!

Chocolate-y, nutty, strawberry goodness!

Because I've heard my customers comment on the use of sunflower seeds in the blends (most don't like 'em), I've decided to alter the original recipe somewhat and omit the sunflower seeds (my apologies to those who enjoyed them in there! If you miss the salt that the sunflower seeds provided to this blend, please just add less than a teensy pinch of salt to the brewed cup!) I've also added some mini vegan chocolate chips because - why not!

This is still really delicious but I did find myself missing the salt just a bit - so I did add a very small amount of salt to the cup. This brings out the hazelnut just a bit & I like that. No other additions needed, this is so flavorful without anything else added! Rich, chocolate-y, nutty and a hint of sweet, juicy strawberry!

For those of you who keep track of these things, this one is VEGAN, nut-free (yep, you read that right!), gluten-free & allergen free!

ingredients: mini vegan chocolate chips (cane sugar, unsweetened chocolate, cocoa butter)

organic ingredients: honeybush, cacao shells, cacao nibs, strawberries & natural flavors

Yum! This is one of those teas that I really miss from the moment it leaves my pantry. I love the chocolate notes, the nutty hazelnut notes & the sweet notes of strawberry. It's just so good & while it's not completely caffeine-free (due to the chocolate) I have never had an issue with this keeping me awake at night. (The amount of caffeine in here from the few cacao nibs, shells & mini chocolate chips is probably not enough to give one a caffeine jolt.) 

This is just - quite simply - delish!

to brew: shake before you measure to make sure you get some of those cacao nibs & shells as well as a mini chocolate chip or two in your measurement - along with the other goodness! use 4g of leaf & fruit to 12 ounces of very hot water (195°F) and allow to steep for at least 8 minutes. you can steep longer if you want, it won't get bitter. strain & allow to cool for at least 5 minutes. enjoy!

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