Brewing tea is easy, right? It is - but you may have been doing it wrong this whole time.
You put the kettle on until the water reaches its boiling point. You pour the steaming water into your cup with a tea bag in it. Sounds simple, doesn't it? You may be surprised to hear that there is actually an optimal way to brew medicinal tea to drink it to its full potential, that most people aren't doing.
This is our advice on how to brew the perfect cup of tea next time you're hankering for an herbal pick-me-up and health boost.
For our Herbal Papaya herbal tea, we recommend the following:
- Place 1 herbal tea bag in a cup of flash boiled water.
- Cover and steep for 5 - 8 minutes.
- Remove the tea bag and enjoy.
Although these are the basic instructions to follow for a great tea experience, there are a few more aspects to consider when wanting the most out of your herbal tea. Let's answer a few important questions.
What is flash boiled water?
Flash boiled water is simply letting your water boil for a second and immediately turning it off for a few minutes to cool it down to slightly below boiling point. This is the best temperature for our herbal teas so as not to burn the leaves and to preserve the most enzymes in each cup.
Why are your teas steeped for so long?
Most teas are only brewed for a few minutes or less, but we recommend you brew our herbal tea for longer to truly get the most out of each tea bag.
Once you combine the hot water with the tea, make sure to cover the cup or pot to steep the tea. After a few minutes of steeping, it's no longer just the water acting on the herbs, but the water itself changes as the herbs are infused into it. This can affect the release of other compounds in the herbs, and also why it's so important to steep for a decent amount of time.
By covering your tea, you're also making sure that your tea stays warm and that the tea is fully infused into the water, allowing the antioxidants and oils of the herbs stay in your cup. The higher the potency, the more health benefits you will gain from each cup.
How do these brewing methods differ from other types of teas?
Although our teas are optimal at just under 212 degrees Fahrenheit, if you want to be a stickler for other tea styles - white and green teas would be best at around 158 degrees, for black and oolong it would be 185, and chamomile would be around 194 degrees. This means our teas are brewed at the higher end of the temperature spectrum, along with other herbal varieties.
In terms of steeping times, our teas are unique in the long wait times between pour and sip. White tea generally requires about 1-3 minutes of steeping, green tea is 1-2 minutes, oolong is typically done in quick 30 second infusions, and black tea can be anywhere between 45 seconds and 3 minutes depending on how strong you want the tannic flavors to be.
Is loose leaf tea better to use than tea bags?
Overall, most people will agree that loose leaf tea gives off more flavor and aroma than you would usually find in a traditional pre-packaged tea bag. It's important to give tea leaves the space to breathe as they're brewed for the most optimal cup, which most industrial tea bags don't allow for. Because of this, loose leaf is generally seen as fresher and than the bagged variety.
However, loose leaf tea requires more care in brewing that people don't always have time for or want to worry about. Unless you're a big tea drinker that notices small details in your tea, the difference between the two probably won't be a huge deal to you.
In our opinion, any tea is good tea and you will still get benefits from tea bags even if they're not always at the same freshness level as loose leaf.
How do you like to brew your tea? Do you have any suggestions for the best cup of herbal tea?