Saturday, January 09, 2016

Making Green Tea

In Singapore, we went to a tea house where we were taught the basics of the Chinese tea ceremony.  The instructor told us that it was much less formal than a Japanese tea ceremony.  He showed us how to use all the utensils properly and then left us alone to enjoy several potfuls while the rain poured down outside.

Photo: Neptunati

I'm not going to go through the process now, though I might at another time.  A friend of mine mentioned looking up how to make green tea on the internet and how she'd "been doing it wrong," and to be honest, at home we forgot all about making green tea any differently than black tea, because we didn't have the cool drainage trays, bowls, or utensils.  I figured that we had it covered because our electric kettle had a "green tea" setting.

I came upon this site  "How to Make Green Tea."  which shows how to brew green tea many different ways, yet the basic process was very much like we learned in Singapore at the tea house.  It is important to add more tea leaves than you would be used to if you were using tea bags or making black tea.  Then, pour hot water over the tea and let it steep.  Fill your cups and then pour off the rest in order to keep it from steeping too long and getting bitter (which is why I am not as fond of green tea).  Then, pour more hot water over the same leaves and repeat, lengthening the time for each steep, until the leaves have completely spent their flavor.

This site shows how to brew green tea without shelling out a ton of money for the accoutrement.  There is an informative video that shows brewing with a simple teapot.  And if you are enjoying your tea alone, it even describes making green tea using a little bowl both as your cup and brewing device.

Ceremony is nice, in fact, it is quite beautiful, but it is also great to see the same routine narrowed down to the simplest components.  I just learned one more thing that will enrich my 2016.