As the air gets a little crisp and for us living by the mountains, yes it has been a little crisp this past week despite the beautiful sunshine which makes perfect fall weather, my thoughts have turned to all things Autumn. There’s something about fall that makes me want to nest – hoodies, blankets, warm food and drinks. All I’ve wanted to do was curl up on the couch, drinking tea, watching Netflix (yay new season of Once Upon a Time!), while knitting ALL the things! Today is the first day we have cloud cover and I’ve had to turn the light on in the office. When this happens I want to start eating warming foods and spices and nothing can beat that by a nice spice rub.
Pu-erh is a unique tea and I say that mildly. I was introduced to it on my first day of TAC’s tea sommelier program and with one whiff I knew I wouldn’t like it. My nose is incredibly sensitive to mold and that first cup of pu-erh reminded me of a museum full of musty aging items. In fact I recall describing it after my first sip like, “that canoe found in an old peat mog Bob and I saw in the National Museum of Ireland.” It’s always interesting how our senses can take us back with pin point precision to a random memory.
That’s not the greatest way to convince you to try this rub right? Haha
The more I’ve had to drink it the more it’s starting to grow on me. Pu-erh has a very unique earthy taste that I find you either love it or hate it when it’s prepared as an infusion. Using it in cooking is another thing entirely. That musty old smell completely disappears and instead an earthy umami flavour comes forth. Pair that with spicy cayenne pepper and peppercorns with the sweetness of five spice and allspice powder and it all combines magically into a unique spice rub for any type of meat. Here I’ve rubbed down a pork loin roasted it with apples and potatoes, but pairing it with a grilled flank or skirt steak would be amazing.
- 1 tbsp Pu-erh loose leaf tea
- 1 tbsp Sea salt
- 1 tbsp Chinese five spice, powdered
- 1.5 tsp Allspice, powdered
- 1.5 tsp Cayenne pepper, powdered
- 1 tsp Ground black pepper
- In a coffee grinder or mortar and pestle, place the pu-erh tea and grind it into a powder. Dump into a bowl and add the rest of the ingredients. Mix together. Store in a sealed container and use when needed.
- For example, I used this on a small pork roast to give the mild pork some zing or you could add it to a flank steak and grill it on the BBQ.
If you make this, let me see! Tag your photo with #teawithmeblog on Instagram.