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How to Brew Loose Leaf Tea

Brew an ideal cup of tea

How to Brew Loose Leaf Tea


There are many individuals who love the taste of fresh brewed tea. For those who prefer to drink tea, brewing loose leaf tea may be more ideal than using tea bags for a variety of reasons. If you want to know how to brew tea, then it is important to know what kind of tea you want to brew and the method you want to use. Brewing with loose leaf tea has many advantages over brewing with tea bags.


Because loose leaf tea is not brewed in a tea bag, it effectively enables water to penetrate the leaves and provide a better extraction of vitamins and minerals and also produces stronger flavors and aromas than tea bags. If you are interested in how to brew loose leaf tea, then follow this guide:


Recommended Items


How to brew loose leaf tea is easy, but you will need certain items before you begin. There are four recommended items you will need:


1. Tea Infuser


Although you can use alternate brewing methods that do not require a tea infuser, it is the easiest way to brew your tea. The purpose of a tea infuser is to prevent tea leaves from floating in your cup of tea.


2. Teapot


A teapot works with a tea infuser to brew tea. You will place a tea infuser into a teapot during the brewing process. There are some teapots that come with infusers.


3. Saucepan or Tea Kettle


You will need a saucepan or tea kettle to boil your water. Electric kettles are recommended because the water will boil faster than if you use a saucepan.


4. Your Tea


There are a variety of teas you can use, which include green, black, white, and Oolong.


Boil Your Water


The first step in the process is boiling water for your tea. For a better tasting tea, bottled or filtered water would be ideal. However, tap water works fine. For the best results, boil your water over a stove top, but an electric kettle will is also an ideal option. It is not recommended to boil water in the microwave, since the water will not heat evenly, and it will also result in the tea tasting different than if it was heated by stove top or kettle.


The temperature of the water is an important step in the brewing process. Depending on the tea, the water may need to boil longer. According to the Chinese process of boiling water for tea, there are five stages of boiling water that result optimal brewing:


1: The first tiny bubbles that are present when boiling occurs is the stage known as Shrimp Eyes .


2: When the bubbles start to grow a little larger in size, it is known as Crab Eyes .


3. When the temperature of the water ranges between 160 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit, the bubbles will be adequate size. This is an ideal range for delicate white tea and some types of green tea. This stage is known as Fish Eyes .


4: At this stage in the boiling process, the temperature of the water ranges from 180 to 195 degrees. There are many teas that do well at this temperature, which include black tea or Oolong tea. This stage in the boiling process is known as String of Pearls .


5. The final stage is known as Dragon Eyes . At this stage, the water temperature ranges between 195 and 200 degrees. The water is officially at a rolling boil. There are not very many green teas that brew well at this temperature. Black teas and Oolong teas can produce good results at this temperature. It is important to remember that this stage will bring out the flavor of the tea rapidly, which will result in a rich and full flavor.


The temperature of the water should be considered based on the type of tea that is being brewed. Follow this temperature guide for the best results:


Delicate green teas, such as Japanese green tea, and white tea yield the best results when the water temperature is between 160 to 170 degrees Fahrenheit.



Traditional green tea yields the best result when the water temperature is between 170 to 185 degrees Fahrenheit.



Oolong tea will yield the best results when the water temperature is between 185 to 205 degrees.



Black tea should be brewed between 190 to 205 degrees Fahrenheit for the best results.



Pu-erh tea will produce the best results when it is brewed between 205 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit.


Place Your Tea in a Tea Infuser


When your water is boiling, place the tea in a tea infuser. Then place the tea infuser inside your teapot. If you are making iced tea, you can double the amount of tea that is recommended for optimal flavor.


Ways to Brew Without an Infuser


If you don't have a tea infuser, then you can brew your tea a few different ways. One way is to pour the tea leaves into the cup and pour the boiling water over the leaves, but this method is only suitable for those who do not mind drinking brewed leaves.


Another way you can brew tea without an infuser is to use a coffee maker. To brew tea with a coffee maker, place the tea leaves in the coffee filter and follow the same process as you would if you were making coffee. However, you will need to add more leaves since the tea does not directly sit in the water. With this method, use one tablespoon for every cup of water.


Steep Time


Steep time will be dependent on the type of tea that is brewed. For green, white, Pu-erh, and Oolong tea, optimal steep time is between two and three minutes, and black tea should steep between three to five minutes.


Enjoy!


After you have steeped your tea, it is time to enjoy your cup of perfection. You have now learned how to brew tea!