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BS: Tea Question

olddude 12 Dec 08 - 09:19 PM
Rapparee 12 Dec 08 - 09:33 PM
olddude 12 Dec 08 - 09:43 PM
Rapparee 12 Dec 08 - 09:54 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Dec 08 - 10:14 PM
Bill D 12 Dec 08 - 10:26 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 12 Dec 08 - 10:29 PM
Bill D 12 Dec 08 - 10:38 PM
catspaw49 12 Dec 08 - 10:44 PM
olddude 12 Dec 08 - 10:48 PM
The Villan 12 Dec 08 - 11:06 PM
olddude 12 Dec 08 - 11:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Dec 08 - 11:46 PM
The Villan 12 Dec 08 - 11:55 PM
Gurney 13 Dec 08 - 03:33 AM
Megan L 13 Dec 08 - 04:00 AM
Liz the Squeak 13 Dec 08 - 04:13 AM
VirginiaTam 13 Dec 08 - 04:57 AM
gnomad 13 Dec 08 - 05:58 AM
Micca 13 Dec 08 - 07:59 AM
Rapparee 13 Dec 08 - 10:33 AM
Gurney 13 Dec 08 - 02:37 PM
Rapparee 13 Dec 08 - 03:04 PM
lady penelope 13 Dec 08 - 03:56 PM
Peter T. 13 Dec 08 - 04:05 PM
McGrath of Harlow 13 Dec 08 - 07:53 PM
GUEST,lox 13 Dec 08 - 07:57 PM
GUEST,lox 13 Dec 08 - 08:01 PM
olddude 13 Dec 08 - 08:05 PM
gnu 13 Dec 08 - 08:11 PM
olddude 13 Dec 08 - 08:16 PM
Joe_F 13 Dec 08 - 09:16 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Dec 08 - 01:39 AM
catspaw49 14 Dec 08 - 03:08 AM
Richard Bridge 14 Dec 08 - 05:04 AM
quokka 14 Dec 08 - 05:23 AM
Dave the Gnome 14 Dec 08 - 05:52 AM
Cats 14 Dec 08 - 06:20 AM
Richard Bridge 14 Dec 08 - 08:47 AM
catspaw49 14 Dec 08 - 09:13 AM
Dave the Gnome 14 Dec 08 - 09:38 AM
Dave the Gnome 14 Dec 08 - 09:41 AM
Richard Bridge 14 Dec 08 - 10:35 AM
Stilly River Sage 14 Dec 08 - 10:40 AM
Bill D 14 Dec 08 - 10:41 AM
McGrath of Harlow 14 Dec 08 - 11:52 AM
Bill D 14 Dec 08 - 12:07 PM
lady penelope 14 Dec 08 - 12:33 PM
olddude 14 Dec 08 - 02:15 PM
olddude 14 Dec 08 - 02:25 PM
ard mhacha 14 Dec 08 - 02:38 PM
Gurney 14 Dec 08 - 11:44 PM
Ruth Archer 15 Dec 08 - 04:59 AM
Lizzie Cornish 1 15 Dec 08 - 05:54 AM
Lizzie Cornish 1 15 Dec 08 - 05:59 AM
Paul Burke 15 Dec 08 - 06:37 AM
catspaw49 15 Dec 08 - 07:11 AM
Ruth Archer 15 Dec 08 - 10:18 AM
peregrina 15 Dec 08 - 10:26 AM
peregrina 15 Dec 08 - 10:27 AM
Ruth Archer 15 Dec 08 - 10:37 AM
peregrina 15 Dec 08 - 10:40 AM
peregrina 15 Dec 08 - 10:41 AM
Cats 15 Dec 08 - 12:05 PM
Ruth Archer 15 Dec 08 - 12:58 PM
Bill D 15 Dec 08 - 02:55 PM
GUEST,lox 15 Dec 08 - 03:00 PM
lady penelope 15 Dec 08 - 03:29 PM
McGrath of Harlow 15 Dec 08 - 04:16 PM
Ruth Archer 15 Dec 08 - 04:26 PM
Rowan 15 Dec 08 - 05:44 PM
Lizzie Cornish 1 15 Dec 08 - 05:54 PM
paula t 15 Dec 08 - 06:06 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Dec 08 - 07:10 PM
Lizzie Cornish 1 16 Dec 08 - 04:05 AM
ard mhacha 16 Dec 08 - 05:15 AM
olddude 16 Dec 08 - 01:44 PM
Ruth Archer 16 Dec 08 - 01:47 PM
gnomad 16 Dec 08 - 03:42 PM
Lizzie Cornish 1 16 Dec 08 - 05:45 PM
Lizzie Cornish 1 16 Dec 08 - 06:36 PM
paula t 16 Dec 08 - 07:58 PM

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Subject: BS: Tea Question
From: olddude
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 09:19 PM

Ok, I am not a tea drinker but a coffee drinker. But a neighbor gave me a can of irish breakfast tea - smells great ... Problem ... it doesn't come in the nice little bags that I am use to ... so I put it in my coffee filter and my Mr. Coffee machine and ran it though .. tried it that way ... nope ... tastes like Tea with coffee .. Dumped it in a cup, poured boling water on it ... now I have a cup of tea grounds that is as strong as a bull - can't drink it. How much do I use, How do I make it without my little bags.

what is the "proper way" ... I like tea, I put honey in it .. but as a good ole country boy ... don't know the best way to "brew" it when it is a can full of the stuff

Help


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Rapparee
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 09:33 PM

Well, do you have a proper teapot? One of those ceramic ones? If not,
boil up a bunch of water on the stove (use a pan). When it's really boiling turn the heat off and put in one teaspoon (neat, huh?) of tea for each cup of water you have. Let the tea settle a few minutes and then pour it into the cup through one of those strainers that looks like a screen door bubble. Add your honey then.

Let it cool a tad before drinking, 'cause it's gonna be HOT!


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: olddude
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 09:43 PM

Ahhh 1 teaspoon per cup.

I have been dumping ... that is why mine would melt a spoon
I don't have one of those strainer things but I bet I can use a coffee filter


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Rapparee
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 09:54 PM

Put it in a funnel, put the end of the funnel in the cup. Might take a while.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 10:14 PM

Unless you're planning to use it as roofing tar when it cools, you need to be very careful with that teaspoon. It isn't heaping, it is level or slightly less than level. A measuring teaspoon without heaping is the same amount (I just tested it) and some types of loose tea come with a little 1 tsp scoop, like the one that comes with coffee, only proportional for tea.

Rule of thumb, if you're making a full pot, is one scoop for each cup of tea "plus one for the pot."

You can put that amount in your cup (I don't use a little cup, I use one that holds about 12 oz of liquid) and pour your hot water in. But the time it has steeped a little all of the tea will sink to the bottom. Just don't stir it around as you drink it and you'll be fine. I often times make one cup with a tea strainer that sits across the top and you pour the water over the tea and let it steep on the top of the cup, or one that is like a submersible ball.

I have a tea cosy I put over the pot to keep it warm for an hour or two and I drink tea in the morning from that pot. You can use a couple of dish towels over your pot if you don't have a tea cosy.


SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Bill D
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 10:26 PM

Any one of those little gadgets SRS linked to will do the job....
Any 'department store' should have an assortment. I have metal ones, plastic ones, and mesh ones....I use the plastic one more often, as they have a finer mesh to allow ONLY flavor thru)

I was a tea drinker for 50 years, and almost NEVER used tea bags. I put about a level teaspoon of loose tea per cup into a tea ball, (or whatever) and pour water that has JUST come to a boil over it, then stir it about a bit, and wait 'about' 3½ minutes. Tastes differ. (different teas may need more or less steeping, according to YOUR taste).


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 10:29 PM

Buy a hamster. Use the tea for hamster bedding. Go back to drinking coffee.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Bill D
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 10:38 PM

Tea can be kept (dry tea, that is) for ages... coffee is fine, but tea, properly made, is gentle, tasty and soothing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: catspaw49
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 10:44 PM

Its a shame you weren't around when Bill Sables made one of his trips here from Yorkshire. A long story about Bill and his various trips to the USA but he always carried his own tea and paraphernalia so he could always have a "proper cup" of tea. When he, along with young Sam Pirt and Ian, stopped at our place in 2001, Ian took my wife Karen and sister Connie into the kitchen for hands-on instruction.

Karen, Wayne(Connie's better half), and I, are all inveterate coffee drinkers but within a week, Connie had ordered ALL the proper tea and equipment over the net from England and went about driving us all nuts with the damn tea............oy...............

Finally it went the way of her other interests as we knew it would.   But.......Like all the rest, every once in awhile it resurfaces and we're all up to our assholes in tea.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: olddude
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 10:48 PM

Spaw
you should see my poor coffee pot. No kidding I have crap all over it. I heaped the tea in it and it bubbled out ... What a mess

I suck at anything with heat ... I am going back to my little bags


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: The Villan
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 11:06 PM

http://www.teaguys.com/


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: olddude
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 11:25 PM

Thanks Les !!

Linda is going to kick my arse when she sees what I did to her kitchen ... I can't even boil water ... I have tea all over the place. It is now not a mission but a quest ... a quest for a real cup of tea ...

I just read about a tea ball ... I didn't think tea had balls but hey what do I know ...


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 11:46 PM

Cleanup shouldn't be that difficult. If you wait until the tea dries up you can sweep it off of any surface it may have boiled over on.

Market Spice tea is a great cinnamon tea. The company itself I used to do mail order from, but I think that put them in too much competition with their commercial customers. When I search on "Market Spice" it says their products are available through Amazon.

Micca was my daughter's secret Santa one year, and he sent (and got us hooked on) Yorkshire Gold in tea bags. One bag of that is strong enough for an entire pot. It's way too strong for a single cup.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: The Villan
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 11:55 PM

LOL I wouldn't like to be in your shoes Dan :-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Gurney
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 03:33 AM

So many coffee drinkers, so little educated taste.


Just a vote on the other side. Try darjeeling tea, but not too strong, with milk and one sugar. Nectar.
Too strong, and you'll have to console yourself with ardent spirits.

Darjeeling is a type, not a brand.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Megan L
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 04:00 AM

when I was a child my uncles used to make a pot of tea when they came up from the pit. It went on a trivet by the side of the coal fire and stayed there all day just being topped up with water as needed. Talk about strong it was so stewed you could have soled yer boots with it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 04:13 AM

I looked into our teapot when I was 11 and thought - if that's what the inside of the teapot looks like, what the hell is it doing to my stomach? And never drank tea again. Of course, I realise now it was just an excuse because I don't actually like the taste of it....

Long live the Jam in a Cup! (That's red fruit tea to you lot).

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 04:57 AM

A proper cuppa can't be beat
Get the right kit to make it neat
Prep teapot and cup with a bit of heat
A five minute brew, drink it straight or sweet

I love my Earl or Lady Grey loose leaf with drop of skim milk and one sugar.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: gnomad
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 05:58 AM

One of these 1 or these 2 will do you. Infusers shouldn't be overfilled (max 50%) as the leaves expand on contact with water, and also need space to move about a bit while infusing.

Megan's uncles' tea sounds like what my boss tells of tea on trawlers in the 70s: gallon pot of water and about 2oz loose tea onto a low light as you sail, topped up with more water as it was drunk, and more leaves from time to time. By the time of return (about a week) the pot would be about half full of leaves, and rinsed for the next brew. He certainly drinks the strongest tea (and with the most milk) I am ever asked to make.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Micca
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 07:59 AM

Richard Owen, the Chief Engineer on a ship I served in made me a mug of tea once, in the engineroom of the ship we served in, by taking a Pint ceramic mug (English 20oz) pouring about 2oz of loose tea leaves in filling it with cold water then inserting a bleed steam pipe from the ships Triple Expansion Parsons Marine Main engine and turning it on!! steam at about 400degC was injected into the water and brought it to the boil in about 20 seconds!!! the tea was as STRONG as hell as black as Guiness and would take the enamel off your teeth , but it worked as the outside air temp was -25degC!! in the Baltic in winter.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Rapparee
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 10:33 AM

A good hot cup of tea, boiled in the pot over a campfire in the snow when the air temperature is -15F and then sweetened with brown sugar and a touch of rum is a gift of God. Of course, hot water is also...so is any source of heat (a nice warm body is good).

I was bartending a party once when one of the guests asked for gin-and-tea, which "everyone in England was drinking." We made a pot of tea, poured out a cup, added gin, and created a drink so puckery it would suck you inside your own mouth. It was still sitting there, nearly untouched, when the party was over. I sorta suspect that the guest mistook people asking for "gin and Tonic"....


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Gurney
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 02:37 PM

Rapaire, G & T is the standard abbreviation for that drink, pronounced Gee and Tee.
I like Whisky or Whiskey in tea, and I'll drink Brandy in Coffee. On cold days, of course. I'll try Gin and tea next time someone gives me a bottle of Gin.
The darjeeling that I eulogised above could be described as puckery, if I've understood the term, or as I call it, abrasive.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Rapparee
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 03:04 PM

Which is why I think the person made a Big Mistake.

I do NOT suggest gin and tea. I tried it, and I don't suggest it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: lady penelope
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 03:56 PM

It all depends on how strong you like your tea. Most brand teas, Like Yorkshire Gold, Liptons, PG Tips, Tetley, are blended indian teas.

Earl Grey tea is an indian tea flavoured with bergamot oil (I can't abide it myself).

Straight indian teas will brew quicker and stronger than 'china' teas. Broken leaves (as you get in most tea bags) will brew even faster. For a lighter taste with a full flavour get unbroken tea. The difference is, while I would leave unbroken leaves in the pot to brew for a few minutes, I wouldn't do that with broken leaves and definitely not with tea bags.

Not all tea tastes good with milk in. The 'china' teas (like Kemun) will mostly taste better without milk. Others taste awful with milk in - Lapsangsuchong, jasmine, or japanese green teas.

My personal favourites -
Tea bags - PG Tips
Loose broken tea - Twinings 'All Day' tea
Unbroken tea - Orange Peko (will take milk) and Jasmine.

Personally, I don't hold with tea infusers, other than in emergencies (they're a reall bind to clean out for a start). I'd go for one of these options....

6 Cup teapot

You can get 2 cup versions of these. They work really well as you can lift the tea out completely once you've acheived the strength you desire.

Or Tea For One


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Peter T.
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 04:05 PM

you can always pour tea through a J-cloth (or even a clean sock you don't want ever to use again.....)

I am a totally old fashioned tea drinker but I would never ever use loose tea again -- what a pain in the ass -- tea bags forever.

yours,

Peter T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 07:53 PM

It's worth getting a teapot even if you use teabags. Tea made in a cup just isn't the same. For one thing it makes the cup too hot to hold comfortably. And with a pot you can top up with water for a second cup.

The tea in bags is more or less powdered, as compared with the loose tea, which is still leafs. Affects the taste.

Honey is OK with Redbush Tea from South Africa (which isn't tea, but it's said to be good for you - and Precious Ramotswe swears by it), but for ordinary tea, sugar is a less intrusive way of sweetening it than honey, which has a strong flavour of its own.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: GUEST,lox
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 07:57 PM

Proper Tea and how to make it properly are concerns which go far beyond the bounds of this world ...















... of course anarchists prefer earl grey as they believe all proper tea is theft ...


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: GUEST,lox
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 08:01 PM

Here's the most relevant segment of the previous link for those without the patience to read the whole thing:

'No,' he said, 'look, it's very, very simple...all I want...is a cup of tea. You are going to make one for me. Keep quiet and listen.'
    And he sat. He told the Nutri-Matic about India, he told it about China, he told it about Ceylon. He told it about broad leaves drying in the sun. He told it about silver teapots. He told it about summer afternoons on the lawn. He told it about putting in the milk before the tea so it wouldn't get scalded. He even told it (briefly) about the history of the East India Company.
    'So that's it, is it?' said the Nutri-Matic when he had finished.
    'Yes,' said Arthur, 'that is what I want.'
    'You want the taste of dried leaves boiled in water?'
    'Er, yes. With milk.'
    'Squirted out of a cow?'
    'Well, in a manner of speaking I suppose...'
    'I'm going to need some help with this one,' said the machine tersely. All the cheerful burbling had dropped out of its voice and it now meant business.
    'Well, anything I can do,' said Arthur.
    'You've done quite enough,' the Nutri-Matic informed him.
    It summoned up the ship's computer.
    'Hi there!' said the ship's computer.
    The Nutri-Matic explained about tea to the ship's computer. The computer boggled, linked logic circuits with the Nutri-Matic and together they lapsed into a grim silence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: olddude
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 08:05 PM

Success !!
It took me 2 days of trial and error, finally, I went to the dollar store. They sell this plunger thing that makes 1 cup. You put your tea in, pour in boiling water. Pop this plunger thing with a strainer in it, push it down, it holds all the tea to the bottom so you have a perfect cup. I used 1 teaspoon full of Irish breakfast ... wow still really really strong .. Gotta cut down on it I guess. At least now being the clutz that I am I don't have tea all over the counter and boiling over my coffee maker. This can of Irish Breakfast came in a gift box. It is really really strong stuff. Is Irish breakfast tea always this strong. I am use to drinking (when I do drink tea) some lipton something or other


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: gnu
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 08:11 PM

Best tea ever.... on a late October morn, walk way back past where the road is overgrown with alders. Start a bog spruce fire with birch bark. Grab the old tomato juice can that someone placed upside down in a water birch alongside the bog years before. Dip it in the bog water. Throw in some tea and hang it over the fire until it boils. Some shockin good me zon, me zon.

Of course, ya need a bit a time on yer hands ta have a proper boilup.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: olddude
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 08:16 PM

I am having a cup as we speak. My doctor buddie gave it to me it is from igourmet.com the can reads Irish Breakfast Tea
2nd flush assam and Kenyan tea (whatever that means)

Then my office neighbor has a brother that is a bee keeper, gave me 5 lbs of honey ... this stuff is wonderful, I mean not your average honey, right from the bugs stuff. Amazing. I just dumped it in my tea and it is great.

But I think a half of a teaspoon is the recipe for this Pennsylvania mountain boy ... a full teaspoon was a tad strong. Yet I drink my coffee so strong that it can walk on its own. But I notice tea is bitter when it is really strong


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Joe_F
Date: 13 Dec 08 - 09:16 PM

George Orwell's advice

But, seldom having company for tea, I myself use a teaball.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 01:39 AM

I have one of those "plunger" things here. I think it was meant for coffee, but it could work for tea.

I wouldn't EVER pollute my tea with milk.

If you find a good variety of Earl Grey it's quite nice. Market Spice in Seattle has some good stuff.

A good cup of tea is as much a state of mind and a ceremony as it is a simple beverage. The anticipation, coupled with the proper preparation (the water HAS to be almost boiling and the tea strong enough and the addition of a bit of sweetener is optional) means that the first good-sized sip can be enough to align your whole psyche for the morning.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: catspaw49
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 03:08 AM

Yeah Dan, the "plunger thing" is a coffee press but you pressed it into service as a tea press and I'm left impressed. This is a much better idea than PT's old sock treatment above and less likely to give you a case of Athlete's Mouth.

Personally, if I were you, and fortunately I'm not since your kitchen must be in one helluva' mess by now, I'd use more tea, not less. By using more and more the brew will be less and less palatable. You are then free to throw it out in greater quantities so that sooner, rather than later, you'll be out of the crap altogether and back to drinking coffee as is your birthright.

BTW........Watch for termites in the honey.........


Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 05:04 AM

To make tea the water does not have to be "almost boiling". It has to be BOILING when it hits the tea.

Also, as Miss Manners will tell you, only governesses teachers and other servants put the milk (if you take milk) in first.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: quokka
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 05:23 AM

Guest lox, how could anyone not have the patience?? That's close to blasphemy, in my book. Maybe we need to start a 'Favourite quotes from Douglas Adams' thread... I must have quoted him at least twice in other threads....ah, such wisdom

Cheers,

Quokka


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 05:52 AM

Funnily enough I was just about to suggest a coffee press. My cuz in the US uses one with much sucess. The other thing you may want to buy is what his wife calls a 'tea kettle'. To us it is just a kettle - electric or otherwise. Thing to boil water in with a spout to pour it out of. She bought one immediately on returning from a visit to us. It has loads of uses as well as tea and if you buy an electric one it will boil water quicker than putting it in a pan. You can start to look here

Cheers and happy brewing:-)

DeG


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Cats
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 06:20 AM

The real question here, though, has to be, when do you put the milk in, before or after the tea? Personally I am a 'milk first' person and like to drink tea from a bone china cup. I always make tea in a pot whether I am using leaves or a bag as it gives the tea room to infuse. And, Olddude, don't forget that in all the best tea drinking circles the little finger is extended when picking up the cup!


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 08:47 AM

I have dealt with this above. MIF is common.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: catspaw49
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 09:13 AM

How do you feel about Milf?

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 09:38 AM

Milk in last AND fist? ;-)

Out of interest - Two things about milk last or first.

1. Poor quality china or pocelain would not stand up to water at near boiling point so milk was added first to ensure the vessel did not crack.

2. It does make a difference. When you put milk in first it heats up over the couple of seconds it takes to fill the cup. When you put it in last it heats instantly. The chenical reaction is different in each case although whether that difference can actual be tasted is in doubt.

Full of useless facts, me...

DeG


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 09:41 AM

Oh - and I forgot. If you use a milk alternative that seperates when you add it to hot tea or coffee try putting the 'milk' in fist so it does heat up gradualy and you may find it does not seperate - Perhaps not so useless after all:-D


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 10:35 AM

Milk in fist? You've still got "MILF" on the brain haven't you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 10:40 AM

I use the Cuisinart electric kettle, and that way we don't accidentally leave a kettle to boil dry. And absolutely yes, "almost boiling." I let the kettle boil and turn itself off and then give it a few moments to settle down. Pouring boiling water causes too much splashing that can lead to burns. Regardless of the container you boil in, pouring boiling water is unsafe. Lose a degree or two and your tea won't suffer.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Bill D
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 10:41 AM

I - do - not - put - MILK - in - tea. I like TEA flavor. Darjeeling, Keemun, Assam, Oolong, ..flavored 'sometimes' with Lychee, Oil of Bergamot(Earl Grey), Jasmine, Rose petals, Orange or cinnamon(rarely)......even Lapsang Souchong....but no MILK.


opinionated? ...me? naaawww.....


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 11:52 AM

Obviously you remove a kettle from the stove before you pour it - and you detach an electric kettle from its base or whatever. But the temperature of the water is still boiling point, within a fraction of a degree, and it needs to be.

Of course if you live high up in the mountains you'll never have a proper cup of tea, because boiling point gets lower the higher you go. (Unless you use some kind of pressure cooker. Which I believe they used to on Himalayan expeditions.)

But honey in tea - for me that's a bit like using condensed milk, too much extraneous flavour. Chacun a son gout. (Chacun a son goat for that matter...)


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Bill D
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 12:07 PM

McGrath has it right....boiling point. Further, you do not want the water to boil excessively, as this will gradually remove oxygen from the water and 'flatten' the taste.

   Tea is a bit more demanding than coffee, though both require a modicum of care to get the best result.

There are, of course, differences of opinions about details of steeping time, brands, types, flavors, what to add...etc...but basic preparation technique applies to all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: lady penelope
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 12:33 PM

By crikey, I find myself in agreement with Mr Orwell on most the finer points of tea making....!

Nope, never milk first. How can you get the correct amount of milk in???

As for the strength of the taste of you tea Olddude, Assam and Kenyan tea do taste very strong compared to other teas. Just use slightly less tea and don't leave it to brew so long. You may want to experiment with other teas.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: olddude
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 02:15 PM

Spaw
I can't stop laughing ... termites in the honey ...

also the tea isn't brewed by a Milf , I did it myself


Oh my gosh


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: olddude
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 02:25 PM

Well
I have to clean up my mess before Linda gets back, she is out of town. Her counter is now tea stained as I had knocked over the can and it landed in the water that bubbled over from the Mr. Coffee / tea brewer tragedy. I tried the comet cleaner stuff last night ... nope ... tea is like ink ... good grief ...

I suck

I know - I can blame it on the cat ... yea that's it ... cat knocked it over ... naw ... can't pull that one off I have to think of something.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: ard mhacha
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 02:38 PM

An old friend exiled in California for years is rich enough to have boxes of the local Irish brew sent over, he never got on to coffee drinking.
In Ireland one of the worlds top tea drinking nations the inclusion of milk is a must, with or without sugar.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Gurney
Date: 14 Dec 08 - 11:44 PM

I understand that tea is an anti-oxidant, and can be tolerated in a stronger brew when buffered with milk and sweetened with sugar. So I'm drinking it that way for my health's sake.

So, can anyone give me a female-friendly pseudo-scientific explanation of how bacon sandwiches are good for me?


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 04:59 AM

ard macha is right: English and Irish teas always seem stronger to me than the tea you get in America, and I assume this is because they are created with the assumption that you are going to drink them with milk.

Spaw, I am fascinated by the idea of young Sam Pirt teaching your missus some arcane tea-making ritual, and her having to buy "paraphernalia". Typically, in my experience, the paraphernalia required to make tea in an English kitchen is:

tea bags (I use PG or Earl Grey or, if I'm feeling exotic, chai)
boiling water
a mug
some milk
sugar (optional)

The process is pretty straightforward. But maybe they do things differently in Yorkshire. :)

Olddude, in England those plunger things are called "cafetieres", and are a good low-tech substitute for the ubiquitous filter coffee machines found in every American kitchen. But usung it for brewing loose tea is a good call!


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 05:54 AM

Always have this playing in the background, of course...


Tea was a 'ceremony' in our house...

As a small child I was 'taught' the proper way to make tea, by Dad.

Our day always started with a cup of tea and two biscuits, always, brought up by Dad, on a tray, which he'd then bring in to our bedrooms, where he'd place the cup and saucer on our bedside table with the biscuits beside it. This was always before breakfast..

One day he called me down into the kitchen.."Come on then, Liz, it's your turn to make tea this morning. I stared at the various things in front of me, and made a bit of a muddle of it all, splishing and splashing things around, tea leaves all over the place..but eventually, I got the hang of it, with Dad's gentle guidance.

You boil the kettle. Once it's boiled you carefully pour a little water into the teapot, put on its lid and swish the water round, carefully, (finger over the spout, so no water splashes out at you) ensuring the pot's warmed all the way through. Empty that water out, then put in the tea, a teaspoon full for every cup you're making. Re-boil the kettle and pour it into the tea pot. Before you put the lid on, you stir 'mash' the tea leaves around, to ensure they all get a good turn at letting their flavour out, then...you let it stand for just the right amount of time.

Learning this part was the tricky bit. Too little time and the tea's too weak, too long and it's stewed. Around five minutes normally does it. You learn to tell by the colour of the tea as it comes out of the teapot, a rich golden brown, but not too dark.

Whilst the tea's brewing, you get the cups and saucers ready, and your pour the milk in, making sure, that..like the tea brew, you learn to know exactly the right amount to add. Again, that takes time to learn. Then you get the tea strainer out, and pour the tea into the cups, placing the tea strainer back on its stand afterwards, so it doesn't drip all over the place. Add sugar at this stage, if it's required..then serve.

When I'd finally cracked it, it was simple, and you did it, like all things, without thinking about it.

This was in the days before tea bags, and even when they'd been invented, Dad refused to use them. Always 'real' tea, never 'the brushings off the floor' as he called tea bags. lol

And then, of course (big smile) you had to learn how to empty the teapot too. This was done always in the sink, as he believed that the tea leaves helped to break down many yukky things that found their way into the sink drain at times. You turned the teapot upside down in one, swift movement, right over the drain itself, causing the minimum amount of bother with leaves going all over the place..then you gently swished out the pot and voila, all finished.

It has be said, that for all Dad's fussiness, when it came to making tea, no-one could make it as he did, apart from his children, and both Leigh and I were always pretty ace at it, getting comments from many people about what a great cup of tea they'd just had.

Nowadays, it's all so different. Grab the bag, slosh it in, throw on the water, splash in the milk..remove the bag, dump it anywhere, usually on top of all the other 'dead tea bag' bags accumulating by the sink..and slurp the tea from any old mug that's handy, as fast as possible, without really tasting the drink, or having time to sit back and really enjoy it.

It's a little bit like so many other things in life that we've lost, those 'simple' pleasures...replaced by speed, as we live our busy lives without time to sit and stare, sit and share.

Hell, it was tea that won the war, for the British, you know! :0) If Hitler had got hold of our tea supplies, Churchill would no doubt have surrendered there and then! ;0)

It was a way of life, a sharing of something that was considered a bit 'special' I guess...and nope, my father never drank from a mug, always from a cup and saucer. He wasn't a snobby man, not by any means whatsoever, but I think, having lived through a war that nearly destroyed him, there were certain things in his life that brought him comfort, and making tea, in the age old way, as part of a convivial sharing, was something he always loved.

Tea gets you through most things..

Just last week we had a lady in our shop who fell over, she went hurtling backwards, and landed on her back, flailing around like a fish out of water, for a few seconds. She was an elderly lady, and was more distraught at feeling everyone was watching her, rather than worrying if she'd damaged herself. She struggled to get up, insisted on doing so, not wanting an ambulance to be called. We got her on to a chair and in no time at all she had a warm cup of tea finding it's way down inside her, and reaching those parts that needed calming. She felt safe again, with a cup of tea in her hands. (And yes, she was just fine afterwards, we checked on her later, when she'd got home.)

And I can still recall the beauty of those words, right after I'd had my first child..."Would you like a cup of tea now, m'dear"...and suddenly, all the worry and strain of the previous few hours disappeared, as that steaming cup of tea was placed on the table beside me, and I was back to 'normality', my new baby on one side of me, and a cup of tea on the other..(and nope, for all you Health & Safety folk out there, I didn't drink it over my baby) :0)


And...just yesterday morning, I was standing in Benjamin Franklin's house, in Craven Street, London, just around the corner from Charing Cross Station, hearing how tea caused such a major problem all those centuries ago...

There you go, Dan...from your work surface, to Benjamin Franklin, in just one message! :0)

I hope Linda forgave you, by the way...LOL


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 05:59 AM

Oops!

"...a teaspoon full for every cup you're making."

.....and One For The Pot.



I can almost hear my Dad laughing over that omission.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Paul Burke
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 06:37 AM

Earl Grey is a blasphemy, a crime against Hugh Manny Tea. Think of all the poor little bergamots that are slaughtered to make it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: catspaw49
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 07:11 AM

Actually Ruth it was Ian who had the wives in the kitchen and we were at Connie's home that evening as I was going in for surgery the next AM. I know that Bill carried his own tea and this was indeed a Yorkshire "Proper Cuppa" method....LOL......I also know some form of teapot was involved not typically found in American usage (china/clay/pottery of some sort)......More than that I'd have to asked Connie or Bill. Karen doesn't recall and I don't dare ask Connie for fear of another tea attack.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 10:18 AM

Spaw - See, I knew it. To paraphrase Proust: "Yorkshire is another country. They do things differently there."

:)


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: peregrina
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 10:26 AM

Yorkshire is not just another country, it is God's own country!


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: peregrina
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 10:27 AM

L.P. Hartley rather than Proust, no?


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 10:37 AM

peregrina: colour me embarrassed! I was obviously thinking that some madeleines would go nicely with a cuppa...


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: peregrina
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 10:40 AM

And they would round here--but perhaps not quite so well as some Yorkshire curd tarts or Betty's fat rascal scones!


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: peregrina
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 10:41 AM

And then... not just a cuppa, but Yorkshire tea or Resolution tea


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Cats
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 12:05 PM

The truest and very best accompaniment to tea has to be scones, clotted cream and strawberry jam. The tea has to be in bone china or porcelain, though.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 12:58 PM

Mug of builder's and a couple of buttered crumpets would do me, missus.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Bill D
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 02:55 PM

It is well to remember (though I am sure most users are aware) that Yorkshire tea and "Irish Tea" etc. ,are just blends of various black teas...as is "Russian Caravan" tea I used to get from Twining. They are often quite nice tea (I had some Yorkshire tea given by some nice guests from England a couple years ago), but I really love to choose and blend my own when I can.
It is getting harder & harder to find shops here (Wash. DC area) which carry the good loose teas, partially due to the extreme pressure of the powerful coffee companies and advertising. Tea is a bit more exacting to make properly, and folks want **convenience**.

I can, with a little driving, obtain 'almost' any teas I care for...and if I want to spend real money, there are online sites to order the special 'estate' teas from India & China...etc. So far, I make do with just 'decent' Darjeeling, Keemun, Assam...etc...along with some generic Indian teas and various Twining blends.

As to relative strength and potency, tea is always a matter of balancing the amount of leaves used with steeping time....and the fineness of the tea.. The finer (smaller) the leaves, the stronger the brew.
In tea bags, what is often used is "D, FNGS, BPS or CTC" and related names. This has nothing to do with type of tea, but just refers to the size and the part of the plant the leaves come from.

It is usually assumed by tea marketers that those who use tea bags are not expecting higher grade teas, and those "D, FNGS, BPS or CTC" grades are used, with moderate variation by better companies.. (sadly, the best known American tea is Lipton's, which, as far as I can tell, uses some of the cheapest pickings)(Sir Thoma Lipton was never in the tea business directly....his family were soap manufacturers, but his name was nice, and was bought to look good on tea packages).

Tea, like most products, require sorting thru the advertising claims, and learning what is truth and what is hype, in order to make a REAL choice.

(I still will never put milk in tea....I still 'suspect' that the practice was begun to disguise bad, cheap tea.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: GUEST,lox
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 03:00 PM

Well the thing that tea drinkers the world over have in common is ritual.

England, Japan, China, India, all love the ritual of tea.

The thing I like most about it is that twice now, when my daughter has had a severe stomach upset, while nothing else has stayed down, a cup of strong sweet tea has resulted in a cessation of vomiting and a significant revival of her general exuberance ... in the form of a million questions ...

    .... damn ... how could I be so stupid ...


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: lady penelope
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 03:29 PM

People have remarked on the lack of good tea as it's too much fuss for coffee cafe companies to bother with. Funnily enough, I have discovered that I can get only really get a half decent, large, reasonably priced cup of tea from one establishment in central London............

Starbucks!

They have a range of blends (although it is all in tea bags), but they ask you if you want more than one bag, if you want 'room for milk' and they leave you to remove the bag when you want and add your own milk etc.


I can't believe I regularly go into a Starbucks now....


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 04:16 PM

English and Irish teas always seem stronger to me than the tea you get in America, and I assume this is because they are created with the assumption that you are going to drink them with milk.

Tea is as strong or as weak as you like, depending on how much you use, and how long you give it to brew. Whether you prefer it with or without milk is a completely separate matter. You can have strong tea with or without milk, or weak tea with or without milk, and tastes differ widely.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 04:26 PM

surely it depends on the tea as well. For instance, Earl Grey never seems to get as strong as bog-standard, every day English tea, and Chai is even weaker than both. Even with a substantial brewing time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Rowan
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 05:44 PM

Youse guys sure go over the top over you tea-making rituals, and none of you is even Japanese!

For those into ritual variations, here's mine.

Find a nice bit of river bank with some shade; coolibahs or redgums are prefereable but optional. Light a small fire and, when it has enough red coals, put you billy on. The best billy is an A10 fruit juice tin with a length of 8 guage fencing wire for a handle but bushwalkers' aluminium billies are acceptable; the A10 tins are best for a decent crowd while the billies are OK for only one or two. Forget the ones with the spout half way up the side unless you've modified its handle with a bit of fencing wire so you can pour properly with only one hand; I own the patent on that modification, by the way.

Make sure that the water fills the billy; this ensures the tinning on its inside isn't burnt off by the coals, allowing rust to taint the tea.

When the water is nicely boiling, chuck the tea into the water. In colonial times the correct quantity was a BSH (British Standard Handful) but these days were chuck in an ASH for good measure. It's important to remove the billy from the fire as soon as you've chucked in the tea so that it brews rather than stews.

The next step, in one version of this ritual, is to "swing the billy." Now, there are some wallies that like to show off by swinging the billy through a full circle, meaning that it is upside down and overhead at the top of this circle. It can be done but requires practice; this is done preferably in isolation with nobody or thing that can be damaged within an acre, or even a hectare in these metric times. There is a danger that the bottom of your billy is not as integral as you think and/or its handle is up to balancing centrifugal and centripatal forces successfully. There is even the danger of a sudden loss of confidence in midswing; not as many are as good at being swingers as they imagine they would be.

Swingers with enough self assurance to not need such a display can achieve enough effect (on the tea) by just gently swinging the billy through a 30-45° arc. Another version of the ritual requires the side of the billy to be gently tapped with a small branch or large twig. The intention of all these efforts is to cause the tea clippers (the tea leaves that float and resist exposing their entire surface area to the infusing ministration of the boiled water to sink below the surface.

After the brew has ... brewed, the billy is tilted so that the tea, with its leaves now all at the bottom of the billy, can be poured into a mug. Here, we're not talking about the person who is about to consume the drink; we're describing their drinking vessel. The mug must be enamelled, as porcelain doesn't stand up too well to bashing around in the boot en route and plastic is just too declassé; stainless mugs (very popular among the neophytes) usually don't have the correct rim shape and conduct enough heat to burn the lips, spoiling the whole experience. Enamelled mugs come in a range of sizes, from 100ml up to about two litres and, in the Top End, they even come with a lid to keep the flies out so you can make the drink last for all the time between meals.

"Milk first or last" is immaterial in most places west of the Divide, as the river water will be carrying enough mineral load as to leave the drinker unaware of whether or not there is even milk in the drink. There is also the problem of whether the milk has gone off in the heat, so I have learned to do without. Mountain streams, however (like the one at
Nariel allow milk's presence or absence to be discerned. Personally, I prefer to be just able to discern the bottom of the mug through the tea so that gives you an idea of my preferred strength. Sorry, the tea's strength. That's still not right, but you get the idea.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 05:54 PM

Blimey, Rowan....that bit where you have to swing the billie over your head....

That's it, the Aussies win the Extreme Tea Making Award for 2008! :0)

Wonderful images..wonderful. :0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: paula t
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 06:06 PM

Lizzie,
Your Dad and my Dad must have had the same teacher! My Dad taught me to brew a "decent cuppa" in exactly the same way - except we would never put the milk in first because we both like "Tea you can stand your spoon up in," with hardly any milk. Good old "Yorkshire Tea" the only concession my Dad ( a staunch Lancastrian) ever made to Yorkshire - apart from allowing me to marry a Yorkshireman!

To anyone contemplating using "almost boiling" water, try both ways -almost boiling and absolutely boiling (take the warmed teapot to the kettle)-You will notice that tea made with absolutely boiling water does not have that bitter edge.

Peregrina, you brought back some great memories - Betty's Fat Rascals and Yorkshire curd tarts! Other great accompaniments are Eccles cakes and hot buttered crumpets. I'm on my way to the kettle and toaster right now!


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Dec 08 - 07:10 PM

Martha Stewart on tea.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 16 Dec 08 - 04:05 AM

Hey Paula, Dad loved his tea very strong too, just a dash of milk, and yes, that phrase about 'tea you can stand your spoon up in' rings a bell too. :0) When I grew older and went out to work, it took me ages to get used to very milky tea, which so many people used to have, mainly to cool it down I think, so they could gulp it faster during tea break time.

And we had tea at Betty's, in York a year or two ago now. Like stepping back into another age.

This thread also reminds me of when I was a teenager, and I shared a holiday with my friend, going to her Granny's in the Lake District. We went out for a cup of tea in the afternoon, into Keswick, and Oh, Afternoonn Tea in Keswick, back then, was a very different affair to back home in the cafes around where I lived. Oop North, tea was accompanied by enough cakes to feed half an army! :0) Served on a bone china cake plate, with three tiers, each tier brimming over with warm scones, fruit cake, chocolate cake, and sandwiches cut into small mouthfuls.

It was a real 'occasion'. I remember sitting there staring at this wonderful food, not knowing where to start. And they'd always bring the tray of tea things to the table, with a cheery "And who's going to be Mother?", meaning who was going to pour the tea out, etc.

My Mumm always carried a tea strainer in her handbag, because she had a real hang up about tea leaves in the cup, and back then, tea bags didn't exist and not all cafes/restaurants had strainers. I always recall the strange looks when out she came with the tea strainer! LOL   

Actually, her handbag was more like a survival kit, but then these days, so is mine. Hey, maybe there's a whole new thread there. :0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: ard mhacha
Date: 16 Dec 08 - 05:15 AM

Rowan, Many a building site worker I have seen using the `swinging` method to brew their, with bacon and bread fried to perfection on a broad shovel,over a brazier, couldn`t be beaten on a frosty morning.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: olddude
Date: 16 Dec 08 - 01:44 PM

What is a crumbit or crumpit ...?

I had a cup of tea with an oatmeal cookie, what is the other thing that goes with it ... please describe.

I am getting to like the breakfast tea, I tried it with milk
naw don't like it with milk .. just like my coffee black seems that i like the tea black also. I tried it without the honey ... liked it better with nothing in it

I finally can do it without making a mess, the little press thing works really good


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 16 Dec 08 - 01:47 PM

a crumpet is a distant relative of an English muffin - but made with more eggs, so it's not so dry. Lots of little holes for catching the butter...


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: gnomad
Date: 16 Dec 08 - 03:42 PM

Recipe for crumpets, including picture. It is basically a very-slightly-sweetened leavened batter. No eggs in any version I've found.

As an indication of scale they should end up about 3" across and about 0.5" thick.

A staple of the winter teatime ritual, they are generally eaten re-toasted rather than hot from the pan, sopping with melted butter.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 16 Dec 08 - 05:45 PM

We used to toast them round the fire, on a special toasting fork, and the butter (real butter back then) would drip all down your chin. :0)

Great with strawberry jam or golden syrup on, piping hot. And you have to toast the bottom of them first, Dan, so that the top gets to stay as warm as possible, that way the butter disappears into them as you spread it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 16 Dec 08 - 06:36 PM

Gotta have the right teapot too. :0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Tea Question
From: paula t
Date: 16 Dec 08 - 07:58 PM

Yes, Lizzie, there was nothing to beat going out for afternoon tea in some of those tearooms. From what I remember they were full of "mature ladies" sitting without their coats on - but still wearing their best hats!
The Tea pottery is a fantastic place! I've got a few of their teapots. I don't use them though.Walking round there was like a grotto. I went there many years ago when it was a very small concern, in Askrigg I think. It's huge now and based in Keswick.

I agree that crumpets have to be so well buttered that the butter runs out of the bottom when you bite them. (obviously much healthier because the fat "falls out" , a bit like the principle of broken biscuits "Leaching calories"!)They also need to be well toasted. I can't stand the white , cold things you are sometimes offered in cafes!


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