Monday, September 19, 2005

Tea Corner

Hi. Welcome to the Tea Corner. We will discuss tea and tea-related issues and topics here. Feel free to contribute as you see fit.

Tea is a great beverage. I like it more than coffee, because the caffeine in tea enters and leaves your body more slowly and stays there for a longer amount of time. It's also easier to make, because all you need is hot water and a cup. Here are some tea-related tips:

1. Don't buy tea bags. Tea from bags almost always sucks. This isn't surprising, because they are comprised of the scraps, leftovers, and floor sweepings from the real tea. Loose tea is cheaper, if you buy it in bulk, and tastes much better.

2. Don't use one of those horrible tea ball things. Those things are dumb. Tea needs to expand in the water and be free, not be locked up and confined in a silly mesh ball. Just toss it in your cup and add your water. It's how Chinese people drink it, and if it's good enough for them, it's good enough for you. Just blow lightly on them to get them out of the way. If you really really can't handle having leaves floating freely in your beverage, brew it in a pot first or get a tea cup that has a mesh screen that fits over the top.

3. Don't boil your water if you are making anything but black tea. The whistle thing on your tea kettle is pretty useless for making green tea, because by the time you hear it whistling, it's too late. The proper temperature is going to depend on the tea you're brewing. The way I tell when my water is done is by listening closely to the kettle. When it starts making a noise that sounds like rain falling on a metal roof, I know it is ready. A guy once told me that you should look for bubbles that resemble crab eyes as opposed to fish eyes. Seems like good advice to me.

4. Don't let your tea steep too long. If you steep your tea too long, it will release tannins that make it taste bitter and may upset your stomach. Ideal steeping is quite short. No more than three minutes, I think.

That's it for now. Sorry the advice is so negative. Tea is really about taking the time and energy to find out how it can be best enjoyed, so as far as water temperature, steeping times, and other things go, just experiment. Don't be lazy, though. Tea is not for the lazy.


Blogger goaskalice said...

What about powdered tea?

What is the difference between, green, white, black and red tea?

How does the caffeine in coffee and tea compare?

11:24 AM  

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