I have enjoyed tea since I was a young child. Being from the south, my first tea experience started with Luzianne tea sweetened with sugar and served over ice. Over the years my grown-up palette has taken over and now I to appreciate loose-leaf teas brewed to perfection.
The following are a few helpful hints that I have followed over the years when preparing my tea at home and for tea parties I cater.
The first important part of tea is the water. I always start with fresh water. If you are using the same water in your kettle and just reheat it a million times you have killed all the oxygen and it can’t breath any longer. There is no scientific evidence to this fact but I feel it really does make a difference in how your tea will taste, especially when drinking white teas.
The temperature also plays a vital role in how your tea will taste. The ideal water temperature varies according to the type of tea you are brewing. For example, with White tea and Green tea, the water should never be boiled.
I have an easy way to tell if your water has reached the correct temperature (if you don’t have a thermometer). With White tea, the water is ready just before the little water bubbles appear. With Green tea, the water is ready just as the little water bubbles start coming up. With Black tea you can heat all the way to boiling. This may not be a perfect method but I have used it over the years and for most teas it works well.
While your water is reaching the correct temperature, rinse the inside of your tea pot with hot water to warm it up. This will help the tea not to cool down so quickly. Now add your tea leaves and pour in your heated water. Then the steeping process (and the excitement!) begins.
When drinking black teas I personally do not like extremely strong-tasting tea, so I usually use less tea leaves than the tin calls for (unless I am having cream with my tea). A nice breakfast tea is really good with a little cream. I recently stumbled upon an excellent way to enjoy Earl Grey tea: just add Coffee Mate French Vanilla Creamer to your tea cup before you add the Earl Grey tea. The combination of the Earl Grey tea and the French vanilla creamer is really over-the-top!
So there you have it – a perfectly brewed cup of tea. I encourage you to take time out each day to sit and sip. You will be amazed at how refreshed and energized you’ll feel just after 10 or 15 minutes. Tea can help you complete your day. Enjoy!