It was during a private conversation on Slack about how much to spend on a tea infuser that it occurred to me what I believe is simple about brewing tea is not obvious to beginners.
So what do you need to brew tea?
First, loose tea. Yes, you can choose it by smell or flavor.
Second, a tea infuser.
Third, a teaspoon. Yep, a measured teaspoon.
Fourth, hot but not boiling, water.
I’ve written extensively about different kinds of teas but this article might be a good place to start.
For tea infusers? Nothing fancy is needed! Amazon could deliver this one (which comes with a matching teaspoon) to your doorstep or Adagio Tea has this one. Plastic or metal works fine. The only factor to consider is the width of your mug. I have a wide-mouthed infuser for my extra-big mugs. If you like traditional teacups or regular size mugs, a smaller one is fine. Also, I have a thing against infuser balls because you have to open them up, put the tea in, and close them and sometimes they won’t close correctly and the loose tea escapes. Instead, I like the ones that sit at the top of the mug that you can power water through othem.
The teaspoon is to add the right amount of tea to the infuser. Smaller mugs use one teaspoon. Larger ones can use up to two teaspoons, depending on how concentrated you like your tea. There might be some trial and error there. (I add two teaspoons to my double-size mugs.)
Do not pour boiling water over the loose tea. It’ll burn the leaves and reduce the flavor. Instead, I catch the tea kettle just before boiling. Yes, you could microwave the water until it’s your desired temperature, then pour it over the leaves. But do not microwave water with tea leaves in the microwave. You’ll kill the flavor.
Let the tea steep from 3-5 minutes. Again, it depends on taste. Longer makes stronger tea.
I make tea every morning, so it’s routine and simple to me. I find the hardest thing is remembering how long I’ve steeped the tea. I use the stove timer to remind me, especially in the morning, when the kids can distract me.
If you use regular tea bags, skip all the steps except the not-boiling water part.
Then consume entire mug, get the caffeine jolt, and get to work.
In other news,
I went to a Nintendo press event last week and had my first glimpse of Carnegie Hall, which was right across the street.
For those still needing Mother’s Day gifts, check out my Wonder Woman gift guide. Want to see all my GeekMom and GeekDad posts? Check out the full page, which includes my thoughts on Nazi Captain America.
I also reviewed Tremontaine, set in Ellen Kushner’s Swordspoint world. It is like a Regency Romance but 100 percent gayer and with more chocolate. 🙂
Up this week for me? Copy editing my first published story, an erotic fertility ritual involving Vikings. It’s currently called Freya’s Gift but I’m searching around for a new title. Sexytimes With Vikings doesn’t quite cover it.
I’ll also be writing a new project, the Princess in the Tower, a modern fantasy romance, longhand. Because if it’s one thing I geek out about more than tea, it’s journals.