Properly brewing tea is not an easy art. Without knowing the secrets, you can spoil the most delicious and rich variety.
Tea is considered to be the most delicious, fragrant and healthy drink. And the British, without any right to do so, consider it their national treasure. In the sense that there are no tea plantations in the country of foggy Albion, but there are more connoisseurs and connoisseurs than leaves on the bushes of a large tea “deposit”.
It so happened that they are great masters of brewing. Below are tips from English culinary experts on how to properly brew tea so that it meets the most stringent expectations.
What kind of water should be taken to make tea delicious?
The ideal option for these purposes is mountain spring and spring water. It is clear that in the conditions of urban life there is no need to talk about spring water, but even the most ordinary tap water can be significantly improved by filtering or simply settling in an open container for several hours.
Hard water above 8 mg equivalents per liter should not be used — it is not suitable for proper tea brewing. Of course, not every household has a device for determining this very stiffness, but just in case, we will proceed from the fact that it is more than moderate stiffness.
Hard water is not suitable for proper brewing of tea. It needs to be softened first.
To soften water, add a pinch of sugar, salt or baking soda to it. Or you can use a more complex method, which consists in condensing the steam that comes out of the spout of a boiling kettle. The water obtained as a result of such manipulations will not only be soft and clean, but ideal, and is the best suited for the proper brewing of tea.
What utensils are recommended for brewing tea?
Under no circumstances should a metal kettle be used. The best option is a porcelain or glass vessel.
A little about the temperature of the correct brewing of tea.
When you read the advice of culinary experts about the correct brewing of tea, one general recommendation attracts your attention — bring the water to a boil with a “white key”. What it is?
«White Key» — a state when the water is filled with a mass of bubbles rising from the bottom. This moment should be «caught» exactly. If you overexpose water on fire, then when it hits a tea leaf, it will decompose all its constituent elements, destroy the bouquet and chemical composition of tea. On top of that, long-boiled water will become harmful to the human body. If you do not hold up, the tea simply will not brew.
When brewing tea, “catch” the moment of boiling water with a “white key”. This is one of the main secrets of proper tea brewing.
Properly brewing tea is an art not only to please the taste, it is also intended to achieve the optimal combination of the health benefits of tea, the activation of all the healing that is included in it.
It is for this that it is necessary to strictly adhere to the rules of brewing, even the slightest deviation from which can lead to a violation of the favorable balance of substances in the infusion. Everything is important: including the time of drinking. According to British experts, 20 minutes after brewing, tea will become unfit for drinking, because as a result of prolonged brewing, the solution will be saturated with substances harmful to human health.
How to brew tea correctly? Step-by-step instruction
Wash the teapot in advance from the old tea leaves and dry it. Fill the kettle with fresh water and boil it over low heat.
After the appearance of groups of small bubbles in the water, causing it to become slightly cloudy, remove the kettle from the heat and wait until the water has cooled to 80-85 degrees.
Do not waste time and while the water is cooling, rinse the teapot 3-4 times with boiled water to warm it up.
Pour dry tea into a warm and slightly damp teapot at the rate of one teaspoon of tea for one cup of water entering the teapot, plus one more spoon for the teapot itself. The tea prepared in this way will be of medium strength.
Let the dry tea swell in the teapot for a few seconds.
Pour 2/3 or half of the cooled water that fits into the teapot into the teapot. Close it with a lid and — on top — with a napkin so that the holes in the lid and spout are closed.
Now let the tea steep. Leaf black teas are not recommended to be brewed for more than 5 minutes, black teas of small varieties — more than 4 minutes. Subject to all the above rules regarding the state of the teapot, the softness of water, its boiling with a “white key”, double pouring, the optimal infusion time will be 3.5-4 minutes. That much, and not a minute more.
Somewhere in the middle of this process, add water to the teapot, make sure that there is space between it and the lid. Cover the kettle again with a lid and a napkin.
Already at the end of the infusion process, add water to the very top. This triple filling contributes to a slower cooling of the water.
The foam that appeared in the process of insisting is a sure sign of the correctness of your actions. You should not remove it, because many useful substances accumulate there, for example, essential oils. After completing the infusion process, stir the foam with a spoon in the kettle.
How to brew green tea correctly?
Almost the whole process is similar to brewing black tea. The difference concerns the infusion time and pouring schemes. You can insist green tea no more than 8-10 minutes. You can fill it 3-4 times. During the first filling, water is poured in a layer of 1 cm, after 3-4 minutes the water is added to half the teapot, after another 2-3 minutes — to the top or up to three fourths of the teapot, after 2 minutes — to the top.
How to brew red and white tea?
To brew red and white teas, you can use two methods:
1. Pour a double portion of red tea into a very hot dry teapot (see how to brew black tea correctly) and soak for no more than 2 minutes, then add 2-2.5 cm of water, after another minute or two add water to half the teapot, and more after 2 minutes to the top (almost). Brewing time 4 minutes.
2. Pour a triple portion of tea into a very hot dry teapot, fill it with water to the top and brew (hold) for 3 minutes, during which pour boiling water over the outside of the teapot.
English connoisseurs of white tea believe that this divine drink of emperors and future babies should be brewed at a temperature of exactly 85 degrees Celsius, arguing that only in this case will it reveal all the magical power of its subtle, refined aroma.
How to brew yellow tea?
There is one important nuance in the correct brewing of yellow tea — a mild mode with a reduced infusion time. Yellow tea can be drunk immediately after the first filling (1-1.5 minutes), then brew it again (second filling — 3 minutes) and again (third filling — 4 minutes).
Adhering to all these simple principles, you can easily prepare a tea that will not only delight you with its unique aroma and taste, but also bring great benefits to your body.