We have been drinking tea for such a long so why do we still get it wrong? Most of us drink more than 2 cups of tea a day and yet we seem to brew it quite badly.
Is it because we make tea more out of habit and we aren’t even aware of the steps we take to brew it? Does it become such a routine task that we don’t think about the art of brewing tea?
If it is a practice which we have learnt then it’s easy enough to unlearn it and brew a proper cup of tea.
These are five that I think are the most common; mistakes to avoid when making tea. These are from my observations and questions I have been asked about. Are you guilty of any (or all of them😜)?
- What I call ‘showing the teabag to the water’. Where you barely dip the tea bags in the water and then discard 😱 the teabag. Someone I know (you know who you are) ‘dunks it’ (her words) a few times and chucks the teabag away!! She wonders why her tea tastes so mediocre🤔
T – Leave the teabag in the water for the recommend time. There really is no need to stir or ‘dunk’ it repeatedly at all.
2. 3 or 4 teabags per person? Again, why? OK, I get that you want a brew that slaps you awake and gets you going but surely 4 is an extreme! Surely, it must taste really bitter? In which case you probably add lots of milk and sugar to mask the taste of the bitterness? You know you do!!
T – This is going to sound
uncomfortable but hear (read this through) me out. Why not buy a tea which has the strength you
are looking for? Radical thought,
huh? There are lots of independent tea
businesses who would be happy to send samples out to you, for a very reasonable
price, and then all you need to do is try it out.
A little time and effort to find your favourite brew for that first cup or the one you absolutely need after a tough call with a client?
Not too much of a bother, surely? It has all the strength and comfort you are seeking
3. This mistake to avoid when making tea is probably the one that makes me chuckle.
Going for the right colour! The right shade of
brownness. See a previous blog on this
very subject – How Brown is Your Every Day Cup of Black Tea – https://missteasmith.com/how-brown-is-your-every-day-cup-of-black-tea/
This is done by either doing 1 and 2 above, or/and leaving the tea leaves/bags to stew. Then, of course, adding milk and sugar, lots of it.
T – Follow the instructions on the packet or change the brand you are currently using for one that will give you all you need.
4. “Green tea is bitter” No!! You are most likely steeping it in boiling water. The leaves are delicate and so deserve water heated to the right temperature.
T – 70 – 85 degrees, if you don’t have a temperature controlled kettle, once boiled open the lid of the kettle and let the water cool for a few minutes and then pour over the green tea leaves.
5. Why is the teabag left in the cup or teapot when it’s served to you? You choose a lovely tea blend or an infusion and it’s brought to you with the teabag in the hot water. You are not told how long it’s been steeping for already nor given a timer.
Does the second half of your cup or teapot taste the same as the first half? Is it not bitter or too strong?
T – Tea or infusions need only to brew for the minutes that have been tested and recommended. The next time you have tea and opt for a teabag, remove the teabag after the suggested time and see what a difference in taste that has.
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