Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Freshpak Media Event & Rooibos Iced Tea Two Ways

Image courtesy of Freshpak.

Let us start this post with some fun facts about me. Fact #1: 99.99% of my days start the same way - with a cup of rooibos tea. They have done for around about the last 7 or 8 years. It is fair to say that I am a fan! Fact #2: I used to make iced tea (including a rooibos flavour) for a living, before my travelling years. I was thrilled then to receive an invitation from Freshpak to a creative afternoon with chef, Kirsty Rowett.

Some of the canapés on offer at the event.

The event took place at The 7th Floor in Observatory. This was my second visit to this venue which has a bar area, food theatre, meeting and dining facilities, not to mention a large kitchen which was a flurry of activity that afternoon as the chefs whipped up a variety of dishes for us to try. On arrival we were offered refreshing rooibos iced teas which I enjoyed sipping whilst catching up with some of the other guests. We also had the chance to savour some elegant canapés: baby beetroot tartlets with rooibos and goats cheese fondant, porcini risotto bon bons with a rooibos and parmesan custard and rooibos smoked springbok loin with berry compote and parsnip crisps. All made with rooibos, all very posh! 

Kirsty demonstrates several recipes at the 7th Floor Food Theatre.

Next we were ushered into the food theatre where we were welcomed by Charmaine Moodley, Freshpak Rooibos Brand Manager. She introduced Kirsty Rowett who took us through the steps of making a basic rooibos iced tea base to which you can add any number of ingredients to create your own signature flavour. Anything from mint to raspberries to cucumber - the options really are endless! We tasted a delicious Berry Blast iced tea, and Rose Petal iced tea. Kirsty also demonstrated rooibos and peach ice lollies, rooibos, apple and ginger syrup drizzled cupcakes with caramelised Italian meringue (if you think that sounds good you should have tasted them!) and smoked salmon trout on rooibos infused blinis with fennel and red onion crème fraiche. As each dish was completed waiters would magically appear with trays of samples for us to try. 

Just some of the delicious recipes demonstrated at the event.

Despite knowing what a versatile product rooibos is, I was still suitably impressed by the array of dishes that were prepared that afternoon. As we left we were each given a small wooden crate containing a selection of iced tea ingredients including rooibos teabags (of course), fresh mint, limes, blueberries, vanilla, cinnamon and honey. I'm embarrassed to admit how long it has been since I made my own iced tea, especially considering how easy it is, but inspired by the afternoon I was excited to some new flavours at home. 

The goodie box: iced tea waiting to happen!

Below is a basic iced tea recipe to get you started, as well as two simple variations for you to try - a delicately spiced and not-too-sweet rooibos and honey iced tea and, my favourite, a fresh and zesty apple, mint and lime flavour. You can also pop onto the Freshpak website: for tons of recipes and ideas! 

(PS. Don't forget to add your discarded teabags to the compost!)




Base recipe:

2 cups boiling water
5 rooibos teabags
4 tbsp sugar

Step 1.) Pour the boiling water over the rooibos teabags and allow them to steep for 5 minutes. Remove and discard the teabags. 

Step 2.) Add the sugar and stir to dissolve.

You can now add still or sparkling water, fruit, spices, herbs or whatever you wish - it's time to get creative! 

Rooibos, Honey & Cinnamon Iced Tea: (makes just over 1.5 litres)

5 rooibos teabags
3 tbsp honey
2 cinnamon sticks
2 cups boiling water 
2 tbsp sugar
1l iced water
60ml fresh lemon juice 
ice and lemon slices to serve

Step 1.) Place the rooibos teabags, honey and cinnamon sticks in a jug or bowl. Pour the boiling water over the top, stir and leave to steep for 5 minutes. 

Step 2.) Remove and discard the teabags. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve. Stir in the iced water and lemon juice

Step 3.) Chill the mixture in the fridge. Remove the cinnamon sticks and serve with plenty of ice and fresh lemon slices.  

Rooibos, Apple, Mint & Lime Iced Tea: (makes just over a litre)

5 rooibos teabags
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
2 cups boiling water
2 tbsp sugar
2 cups apple juice
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
ice, lime slices and fresh mint to serve

Step 1.) Place the rooibos teabags and mint in a jug or bowl. Pour the boiling water over the top, stir and leave to steep for 5 minutes. 

Step 2.) Remove and discard the teabags and mint. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve. Stir in the apple juice and lime juice

Step 3.) Chill the mixture in the fridge. Serve with plenty of ice, lime slices and fresh mint

Images courtesy of Freshpak


  1. I was hoping you and I had not made the same flavours - and thankfully we haven't. So nice to have seen you :)

    1. You too Tandy! Let me know if you publish your iced tea recipes and I'll pop a link up here for my readers. :) x

  2. You must have sent some special rooibos energy into the universe because I devised a Rooibos Sangria yesterday as a treat in the summer heat.

  3. The dishes sound divine. You must have sent some rooibos energy into the universe as I devised a Rooibos Sangria yesterday as a treat in the summer heat.

    1. Thanks Hein! It has been so sweltering, a glass of your Sangria would be perfect right about now. ;) x