Having a nice, proper, cup of tea today. By proper, I mean not from a manky old teabag, and not spoiled by the addition of milk. As you know, I love tea, and have a pretty big selection in my cupboard, but more often than not I just grab a bog standard teabag like everyone else.
When we visited the tea plantations in Sri Lanka, we were told that the tea in our Western teabags pretty much consisted of the sweepings from the floor in terms of leaf quality, and I must say that when I do make the effort and opt for something like an Orange Pekoe, that does become pretty obvious. ‘Real’ tea is light and refreshing and not in any way bitter.This morning’s cuppa is made with tea that my daughter brought back from Malaysia for me. It’s described as ‘An exquisite flowery Pekoe with a delicate aroma’ and it is, and there is no need for anything else in the cup, just pure tea. Lovely.
Many people I know find it hard to take tea without quantities of sugar. I’ve seen people heap three of four teaspoons of the white stuff into just a small cup. Ok, hands up, I used to do the same, that’s how I was brought up. As a child mum put sugar in my tea, and it was all I knew. But many years ago now, I came to my senses, cut out the sugar (it wasn’t easy at first, but worth the effort) and got my taste buds back. I can now appreciate the infinite subtle nuances in the flavours between different types which makes it worth the effort of making a proper brew. It’s just like the differences you find between wines.
Mind you, I cheated with this one, instead of getting the pot out, I just put a heaped teaspoonful of leaves in a tea strainer and poured the boiling water over it and into the cup. Probably not the perfectionists way, but is ok when it’s just me. You’ll notice I did drag the posh china out for the occasion though. Well….you can’t drink proper tea from a mug now, can you?