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Mal, December 12, 2008 in Healthy Bums
Water should be 180F. Boiling water releases too much tannin and makes tea bitter.
Add a little water to your leaves, swish around a bit, then toss out before making your first infusion. This washes off oxidation and powdered leaves which can throw off flavor.
There's two right/best/traditional ways to make tea I've learned growing up in a tea-drinking culture that sadly lost its samovar to the hectic modern pace but retained simpler tea habits influenced by both China and India but not Japan (hence no widespread green tea habit where I come from, and "boiled broom," the general consensus on its taste value). The procedures are different for the black tea and the green tea, respectively.
For black tea, practice the following perfect drill:
1. Bring water to a boil but don't let it sit boiling; turn the kettle off the second it whistles.
2. Use a splash of it to warm the pot you're going to make your tea in; swirl about; discard.
3. Put as many heaping t of high quality tea leaves in the warmed-up pot as your intended number of cups of tea, plus one. Example: if you're going for 3 cups of tea, use 4 t of tea leaves.
4. Do all of the above fast and immediately pour water that has just now come to a boil but didn't sit boiling over the tea leaves so as to fill your pot to 2/3. This is important! -- you need to leave room above the level of the water for alchemical processes. Stir or not, this is optional. Good tea will sink to the bottom anyway. Bad tea that takes too long to soak through might not all of it sink, stirring helps it do so. Cover the pot with the lid.
5. Let the pot sit steeping for a minimum of 8 minutes and a maximum of 24 hours.
6. Warm up your kettle to a boiling point but again don't let it sit boiling, and make your cup of tea with the concentrated brew from the pot mixed with as much freshly boiled water as you like -- some will make their tea strong and others, weak, no rules here. You can use the concentrated brew from the pot throughout the day and the next day this way, but not the third day.
For green tea:
you do bring water to a boil, but don't let it sit boiling;
once it has come to a boil, immediately turn the kettle off, let it sit cooling off for some 3 minutes;
then repeat the black tea steps.
With green tea, it is important to choose wisely, and there's no substitute for expensive, high quality Japanese teas if you want something that tastes memorable... everything else I've tried is indeed boiled broom.
Another point would be to avoid using metal in tea preparation (or any other herbal preparation), as it will affect the energetic quality of the herb.
Some of the more expensive Chinese teas are excellent.
A tea thread ... how wonderful !!!
Never tried the 'activation technique' personally but it sounds commendable for a tea lover.
Lovely Rain, am making pot of Oolong using that method right now.
And I agree with you Smile, non-metal containers are better (a trip to China Town is in order ).
A recipe for Aussie Billy Tea:
1. Most important rule ... Just like your folks Shon, never, ever, wash the billy. You can rinse it but never wash it. You need to let the years of wood smoke seep into the brew
2. Get yourself a good campfire going (oh yes ... kids don't try this at home ) and let a good bed of coals develop.
3. Drag out a pile of coals (or just make a bed available in the fire) and place the billy full of water on the coals.
4. When it comes to the boil throw in a 'fistfull' of black tea for each person and one for the billy. You can also throw in some eucalyptus leaves for taste (make sure they are not Oleander leaves though ... silly tourists).
5. Leave on the heat for another minute and pull the billy away from the fire with a stick.
Now the fun part.
6. With your hat, or a cloth for you softies, wrapped around the handle swing the billy verically in full circles three times to settle the leaves.
7. I have heard some heathens will drink with sugar or even ... milk ! Each to his or her own I guess. As a dinky di Aussie sweetener, and if you happen to be in the tropics you can raid a green ants nest and drop their nest, ants and all, in the billy. Probably not worth the pain though
8. Drink whilst hot and enjoy the sounds of the outback ... and of course smoke in your eyes
9. Best served with a slice of camp oven cooked damper .... YUM !!!!
Y'all welcome by my fireside anytime
Must be Oolong day I'm having Anxi Benshan oolong:)
My method probably still puts me at the cask wine tea drinking level
Boil tap water in plastic kettle (its even got fluoride in it!)
Select which tea, currently small samples are stored in see through in plastic decor containers, at least they are airtight and kept in the dark.
Switch off kettle just before the rolling boil (sound changes)
1/2 boiling 1/2 tap in a teacup, place metal tea ball containing tea in cup, steep for 2 min.
(If first time Toss out and repeat to wash leaves)
Nice, the gunpowder last week meant I used a couple too few leaves. But I like weak tea, its a very light amber color http://enjoyingtea.com/anbeoo.html
I think my Chinese tea is of good quality I love my Dragon Well http://enjoyingtea.com/drwegrtealch.html that I drink at work. I make it in a clay teacup http://enjoyingtea.com/bafoyiclmugw.html so that's better but I still use instant boil water out of those zip water heaters
OMG ... the origins of Dan Bian!!!!!
..................................Oh [email protected], where did the billy go?
Check out Bao Zhong oolong if you haven't.