Tea is one of the favorite drinks for most of us. It is loved by different people: spicy, fragrant, tart, slightly sweet, with a nutmeg aftertaste … But not everyone knows how to prepare it correctly in order to get real pleasure and benefit from this extraordinary drink. We will tell you what mistakes we make when brewing tea most often.
Mistake # 1. Incorrect amount of tea when brewing
The classic recipe is as follows: for 200 ml of water, it is enough to use 2 grams of loose tea, or, in other words, 1 teaspoon of tea per cup. If this proportion is not observed, the tea can turn out to be overbrewed and bitter, or vice versa as an infusion without the character of taste and aroma.
Tea that is too strong can be harmful to your health. It has been proven that the level of fluoride in tea is influenced not only by the quality of the tea leaf, but also by the brewing time and the amount of tea used to brew a cup. The stronger the tea, the higher the fluoride concentration. Its excess has a direct negative impact on overall health, especially on bones; leads to osteoporosis, osteopenia and skeletal fluorosis.
Mistake # 2. Re-brewing
British tea company Newby Teas does not recommend re-brewing given the European technology of using 2 grams per cup. Once the tea has cooled down, it will never be re-brewed properly. There will be no benefit in such a drink, since it will give away all the beneficial substances during the initial brewing. And some low-quality black teas can even release toxic trace minerals. Besides the fact that tea ceases to be a tonic drink, it also loses its taste.
Repeated brewing of the tea leaves is the norm in the Chinese-Japanese tea traditions of making oolong, pu-erh tea, green tea and some varieties of white tea. In Asia, tea with thick, whole leaves, such as oolong, is commonly infused multiple times. But they also use the amount of dry tea for brewing more than it is customary in Europe. If the tea leaf is heavily curled or curled, such as in pressed pu-erh tea or rolled green tea, it is also brewed several times so you can get the most out of the drink.
Mistake number 3. Incorrect brewing time
Each type of tea requires a specific infusion time. Black tea, oolong and pu-erh tea should be brewed for 3-5 minutes, green and white teas - 2-3 minutes, tizans - 5 minutes. If brewed for too long, phenol, lipids and essential oils contained in tea begin to oxidize spontaneously, which negates all the benefits of theine and spoils the taste and aroma of the drink. The unpleasant bitterness that occurs during prolonged brewing is most often caused not by the high content of caffeine, as many believe, but by the presence of harmful substances in the drink. Once the tea has been brewed, remove the tea leaves from the water.
Mistake # 4. Incorrect brewing water temperature
Typically, tea is brewed with boiling water, the temperature of which is 95 degrees. Black tea, oolongi, and tizans open perfectly at this temperature. But the delicate buds and leaves of green or white tea can be burned, which will affect the taste and aroma. The water temperature directly depends on the fermentation of tea (the more it is, the higher the degree of water) and the type of brewing.
Each type of tea has its own nuances, but general recommendations are as follows:
- 100 ° С - black tea, pu-erh, oolong, tizan
- 75-85 ° С - green and white teas
Mistake # 5. Choosing low quality teas for brewing
Even if all the previous points are observed, you can get a drink that is unhealthy if you brew low-quality tea. We recommend paying attention to the following aspects when choosing tea:
Tea Harvesting - To brew the perfect cup of tea, the quality of the tea leaves is paramount. The most valuable tea for traditional blending is harvested exclusively during the prime time - in spring and summer, when the first tea leaves bloom. It was at this time that a tea leaf possesses all the necessary qualities characteristic of a certain variety (see also: "Tea plantations: how the most popular drink is created").
Packaging - tea leaves should be stored in sealed, non-transparent packaging and protected from direct sunlight. Violation of these rules leads to the loss of aroma, taste and useful properties of tea.
Where tea is packed - find out how the tea went from plantation to packing place. It is best if the tea is packaged in the area where it is grown. Therefore, it will be an additional advantage if the tea company has its own factory for packaging and storing tea close to plantations - this guarantees the preservation of the freshness of the tea leaf and its beneficial and taste properties.
Flavoring additives - when choosing flavored teas, pay attention to what the tea is flavored with: whether the tea manufacturer uses artificial chemical additives or the tea is flavored with natural ingredients (fruits, berries, flowers, natural oils and extracts, etc.).
Tea should not only delight with its taste and aroma, but also bring exceptional benefits to your body.
Photo: Getty Images
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