ICED TEA RECIPES WITH PURE LEAF TEA

Iced Tea Recipes with Pure Leaf Tea

I drink tea everyday and as the weather warms up, I like to swap my hot comforting drink for a cool, refreshing one. Drawing inspiration from my favourite summer foods, here are three easy to assemble tea-centric drinks made with Pure Leaf unsweetened teas. With 0 sugar, 0 artificial sweeteners and 0 calories, the Pure Leaf unsweetened teas were a perfect base to start with to #TweakYourTea. I also liked the natural, genuine tea flavour of the drinks themselves. Personally, I am not a fan of iced tea sodas and the Pure Leaf teas tasted nothing like them.

1. Watermelon Mint and Unsweetened Pure Leaf Tea
Ingredients: Cubed Watermelon / Fresh Mint Leaves / Lime Slices / Unsweetened Pure Leaf Tea
In a tall glass (or pitcher), add mint leaves, diced watermelon and lime slices, pour over with tea.
This drink is sweetened naturally from the watermelon and full of summer flavours. For a stronger taste, muddle the mint leaves at the bottom of the glass first, and squeeze in a wedge of lime before adding the tea.
Optional: Add a splash of rum to turn this into a summery cocktail

2. Scotch and Unsweetened Green Pure Leaf Tea
Ingredients: Scotch / Lemon / Green Pure Leaf Tea / Mint to Garnish
In a tumbler glass, add a shot of scotch and fill with Green Pure Leaf Tea. Top with slices of lemon and a sprig of mint.
Optional: Add simple syrup to sweeten this drink

3. Ginger and Unsweetened Lemon Pure Leaf Tea
Ingredients: Simple Syrup with Ginger / Lemon Slices / Unsweetened Lemon Pure Leaf Tea
Make a simple syrup (2 parts water to 1 part sugar) with slices of ginger added in. In a tall glass, add two tablespoons of the simple syrup and the cooked slices of ginger. Pour in Unsweetened Lemon Pure Leaf Tea and top with fresh slices of lemon.
This is a perfect drink for the evening to stay warm after the sunsets with a touch of spice and heat.
Optional: Add a splash of dark rum for even more spice.

These drinks are perfect for summer BBQs, paired up with dinner or a boozy cocktail hour. The Pure Leaf teas were versatile and easy to work. Also, since I’m still working on shedding my winter insulation (aka 5 lbs), I really liked how the teas were 0 calories and still super flavourful. A great beverage alternative for those who don’t love to drink just plain water.

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post. All drinks reviewed below were provided complimentary. All opinions expressed below are wholly mine.

Iced Tea Recipes with Pure Leaf TeaIced Tea Recipes with Pure Leaf TeaIced Tea Recipes with Pure Leaf TeaIced Tea Recipes with Pure Leaf TeaIced Tea Recipes with Pure Leaf TeaIced Tea Recipes with Pure Leaf Tea

THIRSTY BUDDHA COCONUT WATER WITH ALOE REVIEW

Website: http://www.buddhabrandscompany.com
What is it: Coconut Water Drinks
Twitter: https://twitter.com/BuddhaBrandsCo

Disclaimer: Products reviewed below were provided complimentary by Buddha Brands Co. All opinions expressed below are wholly mine and not indicative of the opinions or positions held by Buddha Brands Co.

The Basics:
Thirsty Buddha Coconut Water comes in 520ml cans, is all natural and Non-GMO Project certified. Varieties include coconut water with and without pulp, coconut with mango and the newest offering Coconut Water with Aloe Vera. Aloe Vera is a common addition to drinks in Asia (ie. Bubble Teas), is high in antioxidants and can help with digestion. Thirsty Buddha Coconut Water with Aloe Vera can be found at Whole Foods and London Drugs in Ontario.

Thirsty Buddha Coconut Water with Aloe Review

My Experience:
90% of the time, when I’m thirsty my go-to drink is water. The other 10% belongs to Coke Zero. The only time I’ve drank coconut water was on a beach in Bali from a coconut and enjoyed the mild, salty flavour. I found Thirsty Buddha’s coconut tasted very similar, without any added flavours or colouring. I had chilled my can of Thirsty Buddha to enjoy after a gym workout and it was refreshing. Shaken well, each sip a few chunks of aloe vera, which added a sweetness to the drink.

Thirsty Buddha Coconut Water with Aloe Review

What I liked:
Only 100 calories per can with no added sugar
A good source of electrolytes and I prefered the natural flavour to the artificial taste of sports drink
Comparably priced ($2.50 regular at London Drugs) to other brands
A reliable source of Aloe Vera, I used to drink Aloe Vera drinks from Asian grocery stores regularly, but have stopped due to stories about fake aloe vera being used.

What could use work:
Honestly, I didn’t have any points for this section. The product is solid, honestly labeled and a great drink.

TL;DR: All natural coconut water that’s well-priced, refreshing, and with a hint of sweetness from the added aloe vera.

Thirsty Buddha Coconut Water with Aloe Review

VACATION BREAK! PARIS ITALY & AMSTERDAM

Vacation Break! Paris Italy & Amsterdam

If you follow me Instagram, you would’ve seen all the home made pasta The Hubby and I have been churning out every week. This was all practice for the real thing!

We’re going to Italy!

To be more precise, we’ll be in Paris, Naples, Rome, Venice, Cinq Terres, Florence and Amsterdam.

This will be my third time to Paris, second time to Amsterdam and first time to Italy. So far, we’ve planned to eat plenty of macarons, Nutella crepes, foie gras, gelato, pizza, pasta and seafood. Those are just snacks throughout the day. I was also able to make a lunch reservation at newly 3 Michelin star minted restaurant, Le Cinq in Paris. My dream restaurant for this trip was Osteria Francesca, but unfortunately I missed the reservation window. *Fingers still Crossed* for the wait list.

While on vacation, blog posts have been pre-written and queued to publish.

If you’d like to tag along with my travels, follow me on Instagram, Twitter or Snapchat! All under the handle xiaoEats.

 

BALI – 3 DAY ITINERARY

Bali – 3 Day Itinerary

For our honeymoon, The Hubby and I spent 5 nights in Bali. However since we arrived in the evening on the first day and spent our last day lounging around the resort, we truly only spent 3 days exploring the island. Our itinerary was tight, and we did end up cutting a few activities (no underwater scooter). Since we were in Bali for only a short time, I decided to stay at one resort and hire a driver, rather than moving from city to city. We chose to base ourselves in Nusa Dua, where many of Bali’s luxury resorts are located, because we wanted to spoil ourselves and enjoy the stunning white sand beach.
Bali – 3 Day Itinerary

Tips

  • – Tackle one area of the island at a time. Traffic in Bali was awful, at one point we even decided to hop out of the car and walk to dinner, rather than crawl along on the road.
  • – Prioritize, what’s more important? Catching the sunset at Tanah Lot? Or Avoiding crowds? In general, I prefer to avoid crowds.
  • – Money exchanges were literally every few steps, and each offered a different rate, which fluctuated daily, sometimes hourly. We exchanged USD to the amount of IDR we needed for 2 days at a time. With the ease of money exchanges (many open at 8am and close around 6pm) and the fact that IDR is difficult to exchange back into other currencies, I wouldn’t worry about having IDR before landing at Denpasar and exchange only the amount needed for a few days at a time.
  • – The monkeys in Ubud are fearless. I would not recommend a visit for anyone who’s not comfortable with the thought of having monkeys randomly jump on you without consent.
  • – Hire a private driver, the cost is fairly low (~$50 USD/day) relative to the convenience.
  • – Bargain. I am not good at haggling and don’t think I made a single purchase that was well-priced. I think I got better by the end of the trip, but I’m sure I still overpaid for every souvenir.
  • – Take advantage of the fresh tropical fruits. Mangosteen every day!
  • – Massages are incredibly well priced. We really enjoyed the service and treatment at Bodyworks

Day 1 – Ubud

Explore the green rice paddies in Ubud. At the very touristy area, as we hiked through the paddies, there were people collecting “donations” to maintenance. However, as you wander, you may run into the toll booths multiple times and the villagers may be pushy and aggressive with their collection efforts. After that, we stopped by a cafe close by that served Luwak coffee and walked us through the process. We drove into the city for lunch at Naughty Nuri’s and to visit the Monkey sanctuary before heading back to relax at the resort.

Day 2 – Ubud

Spend the day with one of the many cooking classes in Ubud. The day starts early with a tour of the morning market, before turning hands-on. After preparing a traditional Balinese meal, classes will end around 2pm, the perfect time to head to a massage. Both the cooking class and massage should be booked at least one day ahead of time. Originally, I had planned for dinner at Locavore, but they were all booked a day ahead. I would recommend making reservations at least one or two weeks ahead of time. If you have a chance, I would also recommend picking up some fresh fruit to enjoy throughout the week.

Day 3 – Seminyak

Start with a visit to Tanah Lot early to avoid the crowds. Grab a lunch of Babi Guling on the way to a beach club, Ku de Ta or Potato Head to spend the afternoon people watching and enjoy the sunset. Both clubs have direct access to the beach, loungers and DJs. We sipped on cocktails until the evening set in. For dinner I would recommend trying Mama San or Sardine.  

Day 4 – Nusa Dua (Optional)

Relax at your resort, stroll on the beach and take a dip in the pool. We spent the day lounging and snacking on fresh fruit and chocolates. While the ocean was too choppy for us to venture into, I enjoyed my beach time sipping on coconut water and reading.

 Day 1 UbudDay 2 UbudDay 3 Seminyak
MorningRice Paddies TourSidestop for Luwak coffeeCooking Class, Morning Market TourTanah Lot
LunchNaughty Nuri’s WarungCooking ClassWarung Babi Guling Pak Malen
AfternoonUbud Monkey SanctuaryMassage at BodyworksKu de Ta or Potato Head Beach Club
DinnerBoneka at the St. RegisLocavoreSardine or Mama San

Bali – 3 Day ItineraryBali – 3 Day ItineraryBali – 3 Day ItineraryBali – 3 Day Itinerary