I swung by the mall the other day to help one of my friends pick out a dress to wear to a wedding. On our way through the mall, we couldn’t help not to poke in to a small little tea shop. I love tea shops, I think they’re so neat!
The man at the counter was VERY helpful in describing their tea to us. They had samples of some of their tea as well and I liked them all!
It was a rough decision, but we finally walked out of there with White Ayurvedic Chai & Samuri Chai Mate White Tea along with German Rock Sugar.
I don’t have a teapot yet, but I would like one. Meanwhile, I use just my tea ball and a mug.
Gibberish? It was to me as well, at one point. I have a confession to make: I was a Coffee Addict-at least 3 cups a day until I discovered my health issues. Knowing that coffee had a great effect on why I was feeling so miserable, lead me to a different option, tea.
Confession #2, I used to be a pronounced tea hater. Until I discovered that there are more kinds of tea than just green tea. I have grown to even like green tea now over the years.
Some of you may not have a clue what tea is all about or how to make it. Let me do a little explaining to you that helped me out as well!
- Tea contains caffeine, much less than coffee, but some people don’t tolerate even small amounts well. The blacker the tea, the higher caffeine. So, if you’re avoiding caffeine, stick with white and green teas, or try decaffeinated varieties.
- I have read that decaf black tea tastes much more like real black tea rather than decaf coffee tastes like real coffee. But no two taste buds are alike, right?
- Be careful! surprisingly, tea can stain your teeth. But it’s not nearly as effective in doing so as coffee is!
- Tea helps you relax and makes you feel content. The process of making tea also helps with this sensation.
Speaking of making tea, I had no idea where to begin or how! There are lots of different types of tea! It is important to realize the uniqueness of each one.
Different types of Tea:
-First of all, tea is produced from a plant called Camellia sinensis (with the exception of Herbel Tea) . The thousands of different varieties of teas available in the world only vary by the region it was grown, the time of year picked, and the processing method.
-Each type of tea has its own characteristics including a different taste, differing health benefits, and even different levels of caffeine.
White tea is the purest and least processed of all teas. It has very little caffeine and brews a light color and flavor. White teas also contain healthy antioxidants and are the best for skin and complexion.
Green tea is the most popular type of tea, mainly because it is the beverage of choice in Asia. Some loose green teas are scented with flowers or mixed with fruits to create scented or flavored teas. This tea has only 5-10% the caffeine in coffee per cup. Green Tea helps maintain cholesterol levels that are already within the normal range, are good for skin and teeth, and can be used as part of your diet to maintain a healthy blood sugar level.
Oolong tea, also known as wu long tea, is full-bodied with a flavorful fragrance and sweet aroma. It is semi-fermented, which gives it approximately 15% of the caffeine in one cup of coffee. Most people commonly recognize oolong tea as the Chinese tea served in Chinese restaurants. It is great with helping out with weight-loss.
Black tea is the tea most people are familiar with. It is fully fermented, so it has approximately 20% of the caffeine in a cup of coffee. Black teas help maintain cholesterol levels that are already within the normal range, as well as helping to maintain cardiovascular function and a healthy circulatory system.
Herbal tea does not contain any leaves from the Camellia plant family, so it is sometimes referred to as a tisane. Herbal teas can be broken into three categories: rooibos teas, mate teas, and herbal infusions. Herbal infusions consist of pure herbs, flowers, and fruits. Herbal teas are typically caffeine-free (except Mate teas) and most are rich in vitamin C. These teas can be delicious hot or iced.
Pronounced: roy-bus also known as Red Tea, is made from a South African red bush. This premium tea is a healthy source of vitamins and minerals; it also contains antioxidants. Naturally caffeine free, Rooibos teas help promote digestion, support your immune system, and promote healthy skin, teeth and bones.
Mate tea is considered the coffee lover’s favorite tea. I have yet to try it! Made from the leaves and twigs of the yerba mate plant, mate teas give the same energy as coffee without the jitters (whoop! whoop! ). They also may curb your appetite and contain 21 vitamins and minerals (Phew!).
Also called artisan or flowering tea, actually ‘blooms’ as it is steeped (Schweet! right?). It is hand tied by tea artists and often include some type of flavor or scent along with the beautiful design.
Tea Blends: Tea blends often have the best of both worlds since they combine more than one type of premium tea. Mixing teas in a blend is one of the best ways to get great flavor along with great health benefits. (Source: Teavana)
A lot to take in, but so interesting!
I didn’t really give thought to the difference between a teapot and tea kettle, I assumed they were the same! But no!
The Tea Kettle:
The tea kettle is what you use to heat your water with. If you’re planning on making tea quite often, you may want to consider getting an electric tea kettle, which heats up water more quickly than a microwave or stove top. But using the microwave or stove top works almost as well.
The Tea Pot:
The tea-pot is what you brew your tea in. They are normally made of one or two materials. Cast iron absorbs and holds a great deal of heat. Iron teapots can be very beautiful, but very expensive as well.
The other main teapot materials are ceramic and porcelain. They transfer heat very slowly. They’re normally cheaper than iron.
Basically, the goal is to have a teapot that resists having the tea cool down as it brews.
Here’s How To Brew Tea:
1. Put in the desired amount of water in your tea kettle. However much tea you want to drink is about the amount. However, add a little extra since the tea will hang onto and soak up some of the water.
2. Add your tea of choice to the tea-pot. About one teaspoon per 8 ounces of water.
*fun fact: this is the very reason why a teaspoon is known as a tea-spoon. interesting, eh?
3. Add the water from the tea kettle to the tea-pot.
*if you are making black or herbal tea, let the water come to a boil.
*For green teas, try to catch it a little before boiling.
Simple Tip: The noise from the kettle will get quieter and deeper shortly before boiling begins.
4. Steep the tea.
Green Teas- 2-3 minutes
Black Teas-3-5 minutes
Herbal Teas-5 minutes or more
* Longer steeping times make for stronger tea. But they also make for bitter tea (with the exception of the herbal teas). If you want stronger tea, increase the amount of tea you use, rather than steeping it for a longer time.
Enjoy! Sorry this is such a long blog, but it is very informative!
What is your favorite kind of tea?