To celebrate Afternoon Tea Week (12th – 18th August), Branston Pickle has partnered with tea designer and expert Bernadine Tay to put a twist on the nation’s favourite beverage by creating a tongue-tingling, tantalising pickle-infused brew.
Bold, tangy and flavourful, Branston Pickle has always been synonymous with cheese sandwiches, a vital component of Afternoon Tea. Foodies can now marry two quintessentially British greats – tea and Branston Pickle – in the comfort of their own homes with a simple recipe that pairs perfectly with cheese and pickle sandwiches. The pickle-infused tea offers something profoundly unique for consumers’ increasingly adventurous palettes by experimenting with a range of flavour combinations.
Branston partnered with Bernadine Tay to push the boundaries of brewing. A graduate of Biomedical Science, Bernadine utilised her scientific background to create the unique blend by infusing a range of complementing and contrasting ingredients. The result? A brew that strikes the perfect balance to enhance the best characteristics of Branston Pickle: its richness, tangy flavour and colour.
Everyone knows that port and red wine pairs well with cheese. However, not many people know that a good cup of tea perfectly enhances the characteristics of cheese, and the Branston Pickle-infused tea was designed with this in mind. When matching a tea to cheese, complementing levels of acidity is fundamental to a great pairing. Cheddar is at a pH level of approx. 5.1-5.4 and ingredients of the tea were chosen to achieve a similar pH level.
The Branston Pickle brew features fruity and citrusy aromas of apple, orange and lemon infused with the recently launched Branston Smooth Pickle, in addition to fruit and black tea to create a unique combination of sweet, zingy and savoury flavours. Using a breakfast tea creates a more profound and rich flavour; a fruit tea bag that contains hibiscus flower gives the brew a deep red colour, adding to its bold and zesty flavour. The richness and sweetness of the Branston Pickle infused in fruity notes balances the creamy, savoury consistency of Cheddar.
Bernadine Tay, founder of Quinteassential, tea designer and judge, comments: “Every cheese lover knows that a cheese sandwich with Branston Pickle is an ideal pairing. The Branston Pickle-infused tea marries both cheese and pickle to celebrate one of the nation’s favourite occasions – afternoon tea.
“The concept of afternoon tea has changed dramatically over time, we are now seeing modern twists to the British classic with many afternoon teas incorporating exotic ingredients such as yuzu, butterfly pea flowers and hibiscus, and pairing these with a wider range of flavours in their sandwich fillings or pastries. Most recently, we’ve even seen an entirely frozen afternoon tea concept.”
Anyone marking Afternoon Tea Week can recreate their very own pickle-infused tea at home to pair with their cheese and pickle sandwiches using the below recipe:
Branston Lovers Tea Recipe (for one 500ml teapot)
1 fruit teabag (should contain hibiscus)
1 black teabag (any breakfast tea blend)
2 heaped teaspoons of Branston Smooth Pickle
3 thin orange slices
4 apple slices
1 slice of lemon
Small bunch of celery leaves
2 heaped teaspoons of honey (optional but recommended)
- Mix all ingredients and add hot water before allowing to steep in the teapot for approximately 5 – 7 minutes. Strain the mixture into a cup.
- To serve hot, serve immediately in small teacups or shot glasses and sip with a cheese and pickle sandwich.
- To serve iced, leave to infuse for longer till cooled. Add ice and serve in a long glass with a stick of celery for an interesting savoury iced tea option.
Tips: No milk, no sugar.
Branston Smooth Pickle is available at Asda, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s for an RRP of £1.50.