Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Perfect Pot of Tea

Teapot by David Clarke of Glen Cross Pottery -
the best pouring teapot we've ever had...
Scarcely a day goes by without a pot of tea at the Hotel Cavell, and often two on weekends and holidays.  It's one of those rituals that helps bind the family together, warms you up on a blustery day, and gives the opportunities to explore the nearly infinite varieties of tea.

That said, we're talking about black teas, and occasional oolong here.  Tisanes or infusions lacking vital caffeine need not apply. Even then there are so many varieties and sources that I doubt we'll make our way through them in this lifetime, or possibly the next.  Our favourite sources are Tealish and the Mariage Freres.

We also strongly believes that you can't simply pour hot water over a couple of bags in a pot and call it tea.  It requires careful preparation and a bit of ritual.

In a large kettle bring:
Filtered water
to a full boil.  When boiling pour some into a good teapot, your mugs, and the infuser to warm them.  Swish the water around the pot an pour out.  Put:
1 level teaspoon of loose leaf black tea per cup
in the infuser, put in the pot and fill with boiling water, cover.  Turn the pot around three times clockwise for luck, and then steep for 3 minutes. Briefly stir the pot with the infuser to make sure the flavour is fully expressed.  Drain, and remove, and empty the warm cups of water and fill with tea.  Sweeten or flavour with:
Milk to taste
Sugar or honey to taste.

Suzy and Aija like milk and sugar, while I prefer a bit of honey.

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