I can never bear to bid adieu to my tea leaves after several rounds of steeping. The steeped leaves may be nestled into the garden for added nutrients, or even tucked into a mason jar for a cold brew steep in an effort to seek out the remaining lingering essence. Most often, the leaves end up on the kitchen counter for a recipe experiment.
While some tea recipes call for freshly steeped leaves for full flavor, in this rice dish I opted for lightly oxidized oolong leaves that had endured 4 steeps so that they would impart a more delicate flavor. I crisped the leaves in a dry, hot pan and then added day old rice, a drop of toasted sesame oil and topped it with a few sesame seeds. While the flavor was mild (next time I'll use a roasted oolong), the leaves added great texture. How do you repurpose your tea leaves?