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To UK /.'ers (and others): How to make Tea?

FortKnox (169099) writes | more than 8 years ago

User Journal 49

I'm american... a yank. The only tea I know my (italian) grandmother showed me. Get hot water, apply some random teabag from the grocery store, dunk it a few times to let it steep, throw away and sip until you can tolerate anything greater than a sip.
Well, today my throat hurt (a little bit cold, a little bit talking all day in a full day meeting), so I made myself a cup. Since I've been adventuring in cooking and trying to learn how to do things from scratch[1], I must ask someone who tI'm american... a yank. The only tea I know my (italian) grandmother showed me. Get hot water, apply some random teabag from the grocery store, dunk it a few times to let it steep, throw away and sip until you can tolerate anything greater than a sip.
Well, today my throat hurt (a little bit cold, a little bit talking all day in a full day meeting), so I made myself a cup. Since I've been adventuring in cooking and trying to learn how to do things from scratch[1], I must ask someone who truely knows what they are doing:
How do you make tea? What's the best ingredients I can get in an american stores (is teabags sufficient? What brand?)? Any help is mucho appreciated.

[1] - I'm finding more and more that almost everything made from scratch is worth it. The only definate 'not worth it' I've encountered was baking a cake. Took all day and still tasted like a box cake. Won't ever do that again.

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[tea] instructions (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260760)

  1. Boil kettle
  2. Fill mug with hot water. Let sit a minute to bring mug up to proper temperature
  3. Empty mug
  4. Put teabag in mug. Put teaspoon on top of teabag to hold it down
  5. Fill with water
  6. Go check email while it sits a minute or 2
  7. Dump teabag
  8. (optional) milk, cream, surgar, honey, etc.

The important part is pre-heating the mug. Same if you're using a teapot. Preheat, dump the water, then fill again.

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

FortKnox (169099) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260795)

So getting the simple teabags at my grocery store will do? I always heard most teabags pretty much suck.

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

iced_773 (857608) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260895)

Try Twinings or Bigelow - they're supposed to be the better brands.

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

arb (452787) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260900)

Depends on the brand but IMHO some teabags are pretty damn good. There are tons of different brands and flavours, so you have to find the right one for you. I generally have a couple of packets of Twinings Earl Grey and/or Orange Pekoe tea at home. Depends on my mood as to which tea I'll reach for... Twings and Tetley are the two brands I would recommend for starters.

Of course, the Hitchhikers Guide has a couple of articles on making [] tea. There's also a thread on Everything2 on making the perfect cuppa [] .

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

arb (452787) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260921)

Oops - forgot the second H2G2 link [] .

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

jawtheshark (198669) | more than 8 years ago | (#14262894)

Another vote for Twinings here. That's what I usually drink unless I go to a special tea store. I don't use bags though. I buy and use my tea loose. (Don't really know what term to use.)

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

byolinux (535260) | more than 8 years ago | (#14262911)

Another vote for Twinings. I keep a box of Twinings English Breakfast and a box of Earl Grey anywhere I spend any fair amount of time.

How I make tea:-

0. Boil kettle.
1. Pour hot water into mug (don't fuck around with cups, you want a mug)
2. Carefully dunk the teabag in until the tea is pinkish.
3. Strain bag with a back of a spoon against the side of the mug.
4. Add sugar, but no milk.
5. Drink.

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

jawtheshark (198669) | more than 8 years ago | (#14263182)

I usually make a whole can of tea. My way is:
  1. Boil water in kettle.
  2. Prepare a "tea egg" with a two spoons of loose tea.
  3. Pour a bit of boiling water in tea can.
  4. Shake it a bit around to rinse the tea can.
  5. Throw away water you used to rinse the tea can. Now the tea can is a bit warmed up.
  6. Put the "tea egg" in the tea can.
  7. Add boiled water.
  8. Set timer to 5 minutes.
  9. When timer rings, remove tea egg and dispose its contents
  10. Pour freshly made tea into big mug
  11. Add nothing at all.
  12. Enjoy the tea! :-)

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 8 years ago | (#14261031)

This is one case where the time taken to prepare it is more important than the quality of the tea.

Orange pekoe just means a "low-grade" tea, in the sense that its not some "fancy-pants" tea. And you know something? The fancy-pants ones are an acquired taste, which makes me wonder just what you're paying for in something you have to learn to like.

Stick with whatever's your bag (pun intended :-)

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

Abm0raz (668337) | more than 8 years ago | (#14271226)

Alton Brown has an episode on buying/steeping tea. Hop on IM and I can send it to you if you want. According to Alton, teabags are NOT good, no matter the brand. This has nothing to do with the quality of tea, but the size of the tea leaves that they use in the bags.

Also, if the water is boiling, it will destroy the tea. Depending on the tea (black, green, oolong), you want the water to be between 150 and 190 degrees.


Re:[tea] instructions (1)

Alioth (221270) | more than 8 years ago | (#14262828)

To amplify step 5, it must be boilING water, not boiled water (otherwise there wasn't much point pre-heating the mug!) If the water is not at a rolling boil when you pour it over the tea bag it won't taste right. If you live significantly above sea level you're a bit out of luck, because the water will boil at less than 100 degrees celcius. I think there are certain things in the tea that will only dissolve in water at boiling point.

Milk (preferably full fat) takes any bitter edge off and makes the tea really good. Some teas though are better without milk (but most common tea bags are perfectly complemented by milk).

Also, find an Indian grocery store (or similar: import aisle of your supermarket). You can usually find tea made for the British market (the number one tea fiends in the world) at an Indian store, and you can usually get loose tea there (it requires a bit more effort - you need a tea pot and tea strainer).

I usually drink 6 mugs a day of tea.

The most effort tea I've made is some that my Albanian next door neighbour gave me - it was some wild tea, you have to boil it on the stove for at least 30 minutes!

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 8 years ago | (#14264659)

Absolutely. I pour water into the mug while the kettle is still plugged in. then, when I dump the water out of the mug, I unplug the kettle and refill the mug. Just be careful doing this - if you're not quick AND accurate, the boiling water will make quite a mess. For most people, I'd say unplug the kettle and replug it.

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

Eye of the Frog (152749) | more than 8 years ago | (#14266582)

Don't do this with green tea. Green tea should be soaked in temps around 80C, depending on the type.

Re:[tea] instructions (1)

Ethelred Unraed (32954) | more than 8 years ago | (#14271001)

I generally don't pre-heat the cup, but the main thing is to pour the water on the tea while it's boiling.

Purists (such as George Orwell [] ) drink tea without anything at all; personally I like a bit of brown sugar in it.

As for bags, depends on the bag. Twinings, Typhoo and PG Tips bags are good. Lipton's are so-so, depending on the type. Loose tea is generally better, though, and you should use a good tea ball out of stainless steel (other metals leech their flavor into the tea). If I use loose tea, I normally use two to three teaspoons of leaves per cup. However, I usually just use bags for the convenience.

The brewing time depends on 1) how strong you like it and 2) what type of tea it is. Some are stronger than others. PG Tips is very strong; Twinings tends to be milder. A general rule of thumb, though, is three to five minutes for black tea. Green tea (which, by the way, shouldn't use boiling water, but water that's just off the boil) takes longer. Same with herbal teas. You shouldn't over-brew it, because it gets bitter.

Last thing: DO NOT boil tea. You should pour boiling water ONTO the tea, but DON'T put the bags into boiling water and leave it boiling. That just makes it really bitter and thick, and tastes awful. You also shouldn't re-heat tea. If you want to keep it warm, use a tea cozy or put it on a tealight stove.



Re:[tea] instructions (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 8 years ago | (#14272948)

Tea is one of thse magic thing you cannot reheat. The only thing worse than reheated tea is accidently pouring some milk into tea with some lemon in it.

For a different taste, instead of using milk try some grape juice. Sounds strange, but it works (btw - it only works in a mug; its the same as drinking wine out of your old coffee cup - it really improves the taste)

Cakes are tricky (1)

bethanie (675210) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260801)

But when you use the right recipe, they are MUCH better than a box recipe. *Particularly* chocolate cake.


Re:Cakes are tricky (1)

peacefinder (469349) | more than 8 years ago | (#14261480)

True. I have made exactly one scratch chocolate cake (from the New Best Recepie cookbook) and it was amazingly, shockingly good. (And not all that hard or messy.) This is not a testament to my baking prowess, but a testament to the skillful writing of the fine folks over at Cook's Illustrated.

Well... (1)

metlin (258108) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260832)

I'm not British, but I did learn how to make some good British tea. And being originally from East India, the family prides itself on its "tea-making" skills.

So, the first step to making good tea is to buy good tea. If you want smooth flavored tea, Tetley or Earl Grey are nice. If you want strong and rich flavor, East Indian teas are quite nice - personally, I prefer this brand called Taj Mahal, that can be obtained at most stores that sell East Indian food items. In terms of flavor and richness, the difference between Indian, British and Sri Lankan tea is subtle, unless you are a seasoned drinker. Personally, I prefer either Darjeeling, Assam or Ceylon tea.

And the next thing is the use of tea-bags. This part is really up to you - my Mom would freak out if I used tea bags. According to her, they are the spawn of the devil, and she would not use anything less than the actual crushed tea leaves. But this is a matter of taste, and a matter of convenience. Using tea leaves is harder and is more of a pain. However, tea-bags also greatly reduce the flavor of the tea.

So, I'll just assume that you'd prefer the tea-bags rather than the painstaking process involved in making tea from tea leaves. But if you aren't, I can always describe that to you, as well!

Now, prior to making tea, make sure that the tea-pot and the cups are all warmed up in good, warm water so that the temperature is even. Once that is done, boil the water in a nice kettle. Make sure that the water is *boiling*, and not merely hot, when you take it out.

Now, place the tea-bag in the tea-pot, and pour the water from the kettle. The ratio of this varies according to personal taste, of course. Now comes the tricky part. In some parts of the world, spices are used in tea - personally, I prefer a dash of ginger. I usually get one of those ginger tubes from Kroger and pour a tad bit -- this is really helpful if you have a sour throat, as it tends to be soothing, like a lozenge.

Once this is done, let the tea and whatever spice (if any) steep in for a bit. Usually, I let the tea steep in for about 1-2 minutes. I'd recommend at least 1 minute, and at most 3 minutes. If you keep it for more than 3 minutes, the tannin (which is the thing that makes tea bitter) tends to seep out a lot, making it taste bad.

If you are using tea-leaves, you just use tea-leaves instead of the tea-bag, but exactly one teaspoon per cup. Once again, this is a matter of preference.

When this is done, pour the tea out of the pot into the cup. The next step, once again, is quite regional. British, and Indians (being a former British colony), tend to drink their tea with milk and sugar. Most Americans find that absolutely disgusting. But I think it's wonderful.

Usually, I add about 1 1/2 teaspoons of sugar and a small dash of milk, enough to give it a deep, dark brown color. This is up to you.

And once all this is complete, take the cup and a newspaper, and relish in your tea. With muffins, of course.

"Does the tea taste good, sir?"

Re:Well... (1)

webhat (558203) | more than 8 years ago | (#14262768)

Personally I don't like Taj Mahal, but I brought back Assam and Darjeeling from my travels. Lovely.

I would actually like to know how to make the real Indian tea, Masala Chai. It rules!

Re:Well... (1)

elmegil (12001) | more than 8 years ago | (#14263801)

Masala Chai is black tea with cardamom, milk, and various other things. Lots of recipes on the net. My wife and I found a recipe ages ago and went out and bought cardamom seeds (about the size of small chickpeas) and all the other stuff, and it does truly rock. But it's a big nuisance to keep the specialty ingredients on hand unless you make it all the time. Here's the top of google's hits: [] and that looks pretty close to what we used (though I don't think we did the honey).

Re:Well... (1)

dubiousdave (618128) | more than 8 years ago | (#14265053)

For a quick-n-dirty masala chai, use a bag/teaspoon of Celestial Seasonings Bengal Spice and one bag/teaspoon of black tea and add milk. It's not bad with some spiced rum added.

Re:Well... (1)

elmegil (12001) | more than 8 years ago | (#14265174)

It's probably going to be considered gauche, but I'm actually kinda partial to Stash's black chai spice. Not real Masala, but yummy and kinda close.

tea for one (1)

SolemnDragon (593956) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260833)

oke. Basics of tea for one.

Regular black tea works, but there are also some REALLY yummy herbal blends, and you might want to try something like mint tea, of which you'll find several kinds in the tea section of the grocery. REad the ingredients. If you want regular herb tea, no caffeine, you want stuff that has "mint" but doesn't say "tea" in the ingredients list. "tea" in the name, like "mint tea" refers to method, "tea" in ingredients refers to tea plant itself. We'll use mint for this example, you can try any kind or see if there's a sampler box to try.

Boil water. You can cheat and do this in the mug in the microwave. The reason for pouring some into the mug or pteapot first is to warm it, if you do this in the microwave, it warms as the water boils.

Add the teabag once it's boiling.

Cover with a plate and let steep four minutes. Yes, really. Four minutes. Use a timer or something, a few extra seconds won't matter, if you want strong tea leave it longer. But cover it with a plate as this keeps the essential oils from leaving with the steam.

Uncover tea, and taste. Add sugar or honey- i like tea with lemon and honey when my throat is sore. Any kind, from decaf regular black tea to mint.

Milk won't work as well in herbal tea as it does in black tea.

Oh. Black and green tea. Same plant. Green tea=dried without fermentation, black tea=dried and fermented. Both good, green is rather lower in tannins and caffeine. Both have less caffeine than coffee. Both are available in decaf versions.

Earl grey has black tea and bergamot oil, and i love it with sugar and cream.

Varities of black tea are like varieties of cigar. Some have things added, some are picked and treated with more care, etc. All are similar to the same degree that all cigars are cigars. Twinings and stash are two good brands of tea. HErbal teas, try celestial seasonings or (again) Stash.

There's -usually in health food stores- a tea called "throat coat" made of slippery elm bark. Soothing but tastes odd. It works but is weird, figured i should mention it.

Hope this helps?

Re:tea for one (1)

FortKnox (169099) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260880)

Earl Grey I had the other night... I tried cream in it, but it just made it taste 'wrong' in my opinion. Maybe I'll try cream with just straight black tea. Any fav brands you like?

Re:tea for one (1)

SolemnDragon (593956) | more than 8 years ago | (#14262206)

stash or twinings. Twinings has a lady grey, which besides having my name on the box, has citrus added and is pretty good.

Try irish breakfast or english breakfast, for something with a more robust, unadulterated flavour. If you're a coffee drinker, you might prefer those.

Darjeeling was nice, if i recall, but it's been awhile since i had it.

By the way... loose tea can be put in a thing called a "tea ball" which is a little cage-like thing that holds the tea so you don't have to strain it. Rdewald is right- the reason for around four minutes is so you don't end up with stuff too bitter to drink. But you want to steep it so it's more than lightly tinged water.

also try something like a flavoured tea- there are some excellent fruit-flavoured or vanilla flavoured ones out there. It doesn't taste like fruit, it tastes like tea, with fruit added.

Re:tea for one (1)

loucura! (247834) | more than 8 years ago | (#14262364)

Ma'am, I think I love you. Take this as a second for Twining's of London, their English Breakfast is excellent, as well as their Earl Grey, Lady Grey, and Darjeeling teas. Oh, and you can get it delivered! []

Re:tea for one (1)

SolemnDragon (593956) | more than 8 years ago | (#14263130)

delivered, you say??

I may have to adopt you after all!

Re:tea for one (1)

loucura! (247834) | more than 8 years ago | (#14263606)

Oh!!! And before I forget, the Schlafly brewing company (a St. Louis micro) is making a seasonal Gluten-Free lager that's planned to be released in May. The release date is still to be determined though, I imagine that making gluten-free beer is more difficult than it looks.

Re:tea for one (1)

grub (11606) | more than 8 years ago | (#14263784)

I buy tea loose but one brand of bagged Earl Grey which I adore is Tazo. You can find it in many (most?) coffee/tea shops.

Re:tea for one (1)

SamTheButcher (574069) | more than 8 years ago | (#14265114)

One of them articles that arb linked to says no cream! Milk, not cream. Whole milk, though.

But aren't you supposed to be coding Unread and not spending all your time in the kitchen making tea? ;)

Seriously though, good question, Josh. I had no idea there was so much to making tea. But I'd wager that most US houses don't have ceramic teapots, like those that are talked about when making tea. And if they do, I'd wager that they're decorative in nature and not used much, if at all.

Maybe I'm just talking about my house. :)

Re:tea for one (1)

subgeek (263292) | more than 8 years ago | (#14261944)

there are some great herbal teas out there. i am a huge fan of rooibos (sometimes called "red tea"). it's naturally caffeine free and it tastes fantastic. my wife recently picked up some tea that is a green tea/rooibos blend, and it's pretty good, too.

hot, i like rooibos with a little sugar and some milk (or cream if i have it on hand). iced i like it with just a little sugar. sometimes you find it with a little vanilla added, which is also really tasty.

Re:tea for one (1)

Cyberdyne (104305) | more than 8 years ago | (#14262821)

Cover with a plate and let steep four minutes. Yes, really. Four minutes. Use a timer or something, a few extra seconds won't matter, if you want strong tea leave it longer. But cover it with a plate as this keeps the essential oils from leaving with the steam.

That would be where the teapot comes in handy...

Mostly a matter of personal taste, of course, but I'd recommend mint tea and Earl Grey - although since I have a pack of Earl Grey behind me on the shelf and a large Starbucks coffee in hand, you can probably tell tea's not my usual drink :-)

One of my former colleagues was a serious tea fanatic; he had a sort of "tea ball" thing, like a reusable metal teabag - put tea leaves in, close the catch, sit it in the hot water for a while. I don't know what he put in it, though, beyond the fact it was tea, so that may not be much help!

Tea and cocoa (1)

crimson30 (172250) | more than 8 years ago | (#14266246)

My random input for this thread:

One teabag of Twinings English Breakfast with about 2 spoons of sugar (yes, sweet) into a mug of water microwaved for 2:30. I drink at least a cup a day.

That, and hot cocoa. I haven't found anything I'm 100% satisfied with (as with the tea), but for now, it's 1 mug of milk microwaved for 3:30 with 1.5 packets of Swiss Miss French Vanilla. The bottom half of the cup is always noticeably thin, though... might need something to make it creamier, methinks.

Best Tea Making Instructions Ever (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260914)

They are right here []

no, i don't know if they are really the best instructions ever. but it is douglas adams. how can it be bad?

boring tea (1)

queenofthe1ring (768698) | more than 8 years ago | (#14260976)

So titled because it isn't very exciting.

  1. Get out your favorite mug.
  2. Fill to an appropriate water level (I leave about 3/4 inch at the top).
  3. Microwave for 2 minutes.
  4. Remove from microwave and drop in tea bag. (Try Earl Grey Orange flavored sometime, but your favorite brand will do.)
  5. Let steep until desired darkness. The darker it gets, the stronger the tea flavor.
  6. Remove tea bag and add sweeteners, milk, etc for desired flavor.
  7. Drink.

No fancy-pants tea here, but it's nice and simple.

Re:boring tea (1)

Alioth (221270) | more than 8 years ago | (#14262840)

When I lived in the US, due to the lack of kettles at work (savages!) I used to do it in this way. Some caution though:

1. Microwave for as long as the water needs to be at a rolling boil, otherwise the tea won't taste good.
2. Make sure you vigorously pour the water into the mug when filling it, because otherwise the water will reach boiling temperature without any bubbling. As soon as the tea bag touches the water, it will erupt and possibly scald you. (I actually used to boil the water in a separate vessel in the microwave, and pour it into the final mug onto the teabag).

one rookie mistake to avoid (1)

rdewald (229443) | more than 8 years ago | (#14261048)

Don't let black tea steep too long, it brings out the tannins too heavily. You're lookiing for a crisp taste, but not something that makes you pucker.

Also, if you like milk in your coffee, you're probably going to like milk in tea.

IMH (and possibly ignorant) O (1)

peacefinder (469349) | more than 8 years ago | (#14261220)

There may be (and probably are) better teas out there, but for my money I like PG Tips teabags. It's much, much better tea than Lipton or Tetleys, and I like it at least as much as Stash or Twinings. It can be hard to find, though... go to a high-end grocer.

I have heard several basics for making good black tea: Start with a kettle of fresh cold water, bring it to a full boil, and pour it over the teabag into a preheated cup. (I don't follow any of these but the full boil and I still get acceptable results. YMMV.) We use two bags to a 16-ounce insulated mug. Steep for 3-5 minutes; too short is weak, too long is astringent and possibly bitter. PG Tips bags have no string, so I keep chopsticks handy to pull them out. I could use a spoon, but I find it's less messy to have a pair of chopsticks kept for just this purpose.

  PG Tips is drinkable plain, but here we like to add sugar and half-and-half. (Cream is too much, milk is not enough, and non-dairy is something else entirely.) I also like to mix one bag of PG Tips with one bag of Twinings Earl Grey or Lady Grey. Yum.

Re:IMH (and possibly ignorant) O (1)

Alioth (221270) | more than 8 years ago | (#14262854)

I've developed asbestos fingers :-) I can grab the PG tips pyramid bags out with my bare hands (usually one corner of the pyramid floats about 2mm above the surface, just enough to make a quick grab before the water burns you!)

aren't you an engineer? (1)

mekkab (133181) | more than 8 years ago | (#14264470)

Play around with water temperature, add some stuff to it, switch up steeping times, find something you like.

I've been messing around with real-deal chinese gunpowder tea (so called, because the tea leaves are hand rolled and look like gun powder); I just can't get it right.

That being said, Good Earth's green tea blend in a baggie and Stash's Licorice Spice in a baggie come out fine.

Screw how its supposed to be done; find out the way you like it done.

Re:aren't you an engineer? (1)

FortKnox (169099) | more than 8 years ago | (#14264547)

I am an engineer, but I'm a COMPUTER engineer...

I've done too much software lately... its all about being lazy and automating everything for me. I'd rather experiment with cooking with stuff I know how to make than to screw around with tea. But so many british people get practically an orgasm from drinking tea, so I wanted to see what the big dealio was. Will try some different techniques I've read here tonight, though.

Re:aren't you an engineer? (1)

mekkab (133181) | more than 8 years ago | (#14264763)

Computer engineer; meaning you iterate through build after build, tweaking things here and there, because you aren't actually consuming up an raw materials (other than time). So ? go iterate. Water is cheap, and tea won't break the bank.

Same with Coffee. In fact, one of my very british peeps (*lives there, works there, served in the RAF) drinks coffee. Go figure.

P.S.- use filtered water!!

Speaking of which, I've got some badass coffee waiting for me in a thermos right now. booyakka.

Re:aren't you an engineer? (1)

FortKnox (169099) | more than 8 years ago | (#14265439)

Gave up caffeine, but I have done this with coffee. Not only filtered water, but always add COLD filtered water into the pot. Dunkin Donuts makes the best coffee when lightly lightened with just a touch of heavy cream. Have a couple cups every morning.

Dunk the bag?! (1)

sulli (195030) | more than 8 years ago | (#14265537)

No, leave it in. For the entire time you're drinking the tea.

(I like my tea STRONG.)

Hey Josh. (1)

SamTheButcher (574069) | more than 8 years ago | (#14269971)

My TiVo recorded an episode of Good Eats tonight - True Brew 2 - How to make the perfect cup of tea. :)

Re:Hey Josh. (1)

FortKnox (169099) | more than 8 years ago | (#14271499)

Yeah, got it too, but he's an 'anti-bagger' and I don't have the equipment to do the loose leaf stuff, yet.

Re:Hey Josh. (1)

SamTheButcher (574069) | more than 8 years ago | (#14271759)

Ah, gotcha. Just wanted to mention it. Kind of a funny coincidence, though. :)

How can you guys stand earl gray? (1)

Com2Kid (142006) | more than 8 years ago | (#14270144)

that stuff tastes horrible.

Absolutely awful.

Then again what do I know, I prefer fruit flavored herbal teas.

Actually Vietnamese style tea (and I would imagine coffee) is good.

1/2 tea, 1/2 cream. :)

Same with their coffee, but I think you have to use sweetened condensed milk instead. About the only way I could stand coffee I think, heh. Then again just give me the sweetened condensed milk and I'll be happy!

Oh and decaf chai is good, but hard to find. Err, am I being heretical if I mention Oregon Chai? ^_^

Tea making (1)

Dan Hayes (212400) | more than 8 years ago | (#14289869)

I saw a program once where a group of tea-tasters from various upmarket brands of loose tea tried to tell which of a group of teas were loose teas, and which were from teabags. And the conclusion was that they couldn't, so don't worry about going to the hassle of loose tea... I think tea bags used to be a lot poorer quality, but that was quite a while ago.

As for making it, get your mug, put the tea bag in it, wait for kettle to boil, pour water in, stir a couple of times to get the tea bag moving, leave for as long as required for strength (varies by brand and taste - with PG Tips Pyramid bags ten seconds of vigorous stirring is enough for a decent cup, generally I leave it for a minute or two though), squeeze tea bag against side of mug with spoon and remove tea bag, then add milk until it's the colour you want. Don't use skimmed milk, it's too weak to taste good.

You can drink it black, but the milk breaks up the tannins in the tea which give it it's staning properties, they're not very good for you. You can have sugar if you want, but personally I haven't for over a decade, it just spoils the taste.

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