Loquat Iced Tea Smoothie
When I received loquats in the box of wonderful inspirational goodies last week I could hardly contain my excitement. Loquats ,also known as nispero fruits, are medium size oval-round milky orangery fruits with two large round pips inside. The skin is slightly furry when they are green but it becomes smoother when ripe. They remind me of apricots however the colour is slightly darker.
I know that they are not native to Britain but they are in season in Spain at the moment and you can find them at fruit and vegetable markets around Britain.
I actually grew up with loquats, so the sight of them took me back to my childhood. The neighbours two doors down had a huge loquat tree in their back yard. As a child when my friends came around we would walk past this house on our way to the clay pit behind the grave yard. We fell every time into the trap of temptation by climbing over the fence to shin up this big loquat tree to harvest these wonderful bursts of summer. Well I did get in trouble when I got home, first of all because my clothes would be covered in clay and secondly the lady who owned the loquat tree complained to my father. I have a giggle about this now as I put the experience down to a part of growing up and I’m blessed with these wonderful memories. Why do fruits that are “stolen” always taste sweet? A question that baffles the mind.
Loquats bruise fairly quickly and they are at their best when eaten very ripe, this might mean that they would not look too pretty. Most of us would have thrown them in the compost heap at this stage but I thought I should savour the wonderful sweet scented taste by making this Iced tea smoothie. The loquats have a distinct earthy flavour and for that reason it works well with Assam tea. I freeze the loquats, they act as the ice cubes and then Iwhizz them together with the tea that I make with cold water. Infusing the tea with cold water does take slightly longer but you get a very pure and clean taste of the tea. Boiling hot water normally burns the delicate tea leaves and for that reason I like to soak the tea in cold water when making cold tea drinks.
I enjoy this smoothie on a lazy sunny afternoon but if you would like to enjoy it for breakfast blend in a tablespoon of raw oats as this will give you added slow burning energy.
- 200g over ripe loquats or nispero fruits
- 20g honey
- 150g cold water
- 2 gold Assam tea bags
- 100g natural yoghurt
- 50g banana
- Squeeze of lemon juice
Pour the cold water over the assam tea bags and place them in the fridge over night to infuse.
Wash the loquats, cut them in half and remove the stones. Put them in a freezer bag and place in the freezer until frozen solid. this acts as the ice cubes.
Remove the tea bags and pour the tea into a blender with the frozen loquats, sliced bananas, lemon juice and honey. Blend on high speed until smooth.
Add the yoghurt and pulse blend.
Lemon Balm Sugar
- 1ts lemon balm chopped
- 1tbs caster sugar
Blend the sugar and lemon balm to make flavoured sugar.
Dip the rim of the glass in water and then into the flavoured sugar.
Pour the smoothie in the decorated glass and serve immediately.
Serves 4/5 125ml shots
Food Fanatics Tips
Blend in one tablespoon of dry oats with the smoothie mixture for a ideal slow burning breakfast drink. Serve the smoothie cold to appreciate the subtle fragrances of the Assam tea and loquats.