Secrets of tea

How to choose when buying tea
     The British, who know a lot about tea and tea to improve its taste more than one century in the free market, are not on the shelves of shops and shopping directories teas so many names, as in Russia.
     The Chinese, the great tea masters for centuries have created, as follows from some sources, more than 8 thousand. Unique teas differ in flavor, taste, shape and twisted leaves, and having their names, often very intricate. It happened, however, because in a large country fragmented farms producing homemade tea and their own way sought perfection in the tea business, and in our time the Chinese authorities are trying to bring it all "sea of ​​names" to one and a half hundreds.
     If the choice falls on the leaf teas and already have experience in welding these teas, should decide in favor of tea broken or whole leaf, and then --leaf. Also - to determine their preferences in favor of India, Ceylon, Chinese or other teas. Yes, and decide how much money to spend.
With this preliminary program of action it is already possible to begin consideration of the existing tea product.
     From the first years of the new century, the Russian tea market is becoming more civilized and decent shops less happens to stumble on counterfeit or stale tea goods. The latter is not less important than the first: improper or careless storage of tea, even in a respectable supermarket can ruin a day all the virtues of tea packages of any kind.
For this reason, whenever and wherever possible, you should buy tea in a specialty store or a special section where traders are turning to professional tea. Those who choose to buy tea from the open street of the shop counter or container on the market, are particularly at risk to buy is already undone tea, even if he has a reliable and solid packaging.
     In any case it is necessary to carefully check the integrity of the package and said at its time of manufacture of tea and its shelf life, which necessarily must be present if this is not the "Left" product. It is useful to remember that the Tea Board of India has set for the whole of the Indian tea products a special logo, which is placed on tea packaging, in order to verify its authenticity. Introduced additional logos separately for the tea plantations of Darjeeling, Assam and Nilgiri.
     Council of Sri Lanka tea is also set for Ceylon tea own sign - a trademark with the image of a lion, and the sign must be present on the packaging, if it says that it contains Ceylon tea.
     In turn, control the Russian organization Rostest constantly engaged in checking the quality of the tea product and a sign Rostest must necessarily be present on any packaging of tea, whether imported or domestic packaging. It is best to buy tea in a specialty store, where its storage requirements are met accurately and where tea can offer in bulk in special packaging, allow to consider it and will give full information about it. It is important to know when this or that particular tea is produced and when it went on sale.
     Considering the leaf tea, you need to pay attention to the fact that the color matched his type, was smooth and uniform. To the tea leaves are the same size, shiny and even oily, not lackluster, and - dense, so that broke and pulverized when you squeeze them with your fingers. That there was a lot of whole tea leaves, and leaves very little broken lines, the more tea dust.
     A sign of good tea is that flicker in a mixture of tea "white blade of grass" (it - tips), and a sign of poor - if you come across a lot of stalks.
     It should smell the tea, in order to determine whether its foreign smell shades, the more - the spirit of rottenness or mustiness. You can even chew on a few tea leaves, to feel the taste of tea, and in conjunction with the smell of it will prompt option.
The normal loose black tea should be no more than 3-7% moisture, red and green - no more than 5%. With the increase of up to 8% tea begins to deteriorate, he was "getting old" loses its aroma and taste.
Buying tea weighted, reasonable to take the first "on trial" small tea servings (50 grams) of two or three varieties to try them at home and then have to buy a large package liked tea.
Advantages of flat and granulated tea
In everyday life we ​​are most present two types of tea - black and green, but the distribution is received and oolong tea (oolong). All these teas now come to us from the producers as a whole leaf tea, tea leaf broken or granular. These gradations are of some importance when welding and can significantly affect the flavor and taste of the infusion. Most of the tea recipes that can be found in various publications, indicated in the list of ingredients needed to prepare the recommended drink, just "tea". The vast majority of recipes, experiments based on black tea.
If there is no further explanation, it should be understood by those familiar to us everyday black tea leaf graduation whole or broken. Tselnolistovoy tea needs more time to get a good infusion (5 minutes or more), and broken tea is made faster and more completely extracted.
As for CTC teas (tea prepared by "STS" technology), it is also extracted during welding tselnolistovogo better, although it may be inferior in its flavor and softness of taste. At the same time, the infusion CTC differentiates rich, full of flavor, and it quite compete with the leaf tea of ​​the same sort.
Granulated tea was very widespread in the US, Canada, England, and India, which was the first to produce it in Assam. It is convenient to use in restaurants and offices, and many people find it very convenient for domestic purposes.
Tea in bags disposable brewing
     On the history of the tea filter bags it has already been said. Presently, these bags are made largely from materials that allow fully extracted tea and do not spoil the taste of the tea. More fully extracted from tea bags and double bags of circular shape and a special kind of material with perforations 3000.
     The process takes place in special packaging machines, which are capable in the production of full enough to maintain the qualitative indicators of packed tea product. Conservation quality facilitated by the fact that the filter bags themselves are large, and well-known companies immediately sealed them in individual envelopes. Consequently, after the opening of the general packaging bags each is individually packaged in sealed, which continues to protect it from the external environment. The tea bags packed graduation "sharps". These small pieces of tea leaves when brewing in the infusion quickly give all their valuable properties. But usually for the manufacture of tea bags, even if placed in elegant packaging, is bran tea low grades. In particular, so popular among Americans teabags filled mostly bran ordinary varieties of Argentine tea. Only notable British firms are preparing for their brands tea bags quite high grades.
     With all this in practical America and England are now in a prim to 90% of the tea used in tea bags. In Russia, despite all distrust of these sachets provoked still walking on the mass market packages adulterated tea, is also rapidly growing demand for them: 10 times in the last 4 years.
     The filter bags have become part of everyday life vain, when we save on everything and, unfortunately - to prepare yourself a good cup of tea. The era when people want to get a lot of things immediately. Everyone makes his choice: someone confined quickly brewed tea bags, and someone will find the time and the desire to delight your life and get a special tea repose on a special recipe.
In practical terms, for the execution of different tea recipes is better to use the leaf and granulated teas, rather than bags.
How to store tea
Ready dry tea of ​​all types and varieties - a delicate product, very sensitive to moisture and any foreign odors. Immediately after the production of tea are packed carefully and take special measures during transport precautions. But often "lose their vigilance," placing packaging on store shelves and warehouses, as well as purchased put tea packs anywhere on the kitchen shelf, and even at the stove. It happens, and if not complete, the partial loss of many tea qualities.
      Failure to comply with the storage conditions lead to the fact that even the highest and most exquisite variety of tea will be worse than the taste, aroma and in its other characteristics, than the low grade good condition. Improper storage of tea can for one day completely lose their flavor. At the same time, compliance with rules governing the storage of tea for a long time, for several years, will protect it from losing its qualities.
     The main one is the packing tightness and sterility, and this includes clean rooms, the lack of it from foreign odors and humidity.
It is worth remembering the wisdom of Chinese tea pavilion, the Japanese tea houses and tea rooms in the old Russian houses, where tea was prepared and stored. Keep away from the kitchen smells or anything else. They were kept in a special box or a box, and even a blind pouch.
     Now there are various ready-made containers for storage of tea: porcelain caddy, metal boxes, tinned inside and closed with a tight lid, special brand kulechki with foil inside and clip at the top. Widely in the course of cans of tea well-known companies; It is particularly convenient and reliable storage of tea cans with tight-fitting lid round.
     Many companies provide trading stack tea three, or even four, "clothes": tea blend itself is sealed at the time of packing in special plastic or foil, then placed in a cardboard box on top and sealed with cellophane yet. Sometimes in a big box put two kulechka tea, bearing in mind the preservation of the second kulechka soldered up to that time, until it is first used content.
      Once opened a sealed package with tea and taking some portion of, care should be taken that the remaining part of the tea was again tightly closed in the same package or placed in a caddy or a metal box with a tight lid.
It is unacceptable to pour tea in plastic and plastic containers - tea suffocate. As it is impossible to paper kulechki, especially of newsprint - tea will collect air moisture and even the smells of ink. It is undesirable to store tea in a glass, the more so because it is counter to stay in the light.
Following the wisdom of the Chinese and the Japanese, it is reasonable to place the container with the tea back in a box or a bag made of thick fabric. And most importantly - do not expose the influence of the tea kitchen odors and various chemicals, moist air. This will help to keep long pristine quality of tea, and that was said above - it is no secret, just a warning.
How to find and prepare water for tea
     In any serious book about tea mentioned critical importance of water, which we choose to brew tea. Water in a certain sense is even "more important" of the tea because of poor quality water can spoil the drink tea at any grade, even the superior.
In other words, water - not just a component for receiving the infusion, but an equal partner to fall asleep in her dry tea, with whom she enters into a complex interaction.
     Water for brewing tea does not have the odor, the more - the smell of bleach, soap, hydrogen sulphide, mineral oil. It should not give rust, musty, rotten, contain any suspended particles. For these reasons, unsuitable water pond, muddy rivers, swamps, as well as water mineral springs.
     Only in rare cases it is possible to use well water, if it is soft and does not contain ferrous compounds. The same applies to water wells, which is suitable for tea, only if free of minerals and constantly bail.
     Any mineral or salt water, especially with a high content of calcium and magnesium, is "hard". When brewing tea, it hinders its extraction, not to mention the fact that spoils the taste and aroma, killing them sulfates and carbon compounds. "Soft" water, on the other hand, is well suited for welding. Ideal water from mountain sources and mountain glaciers.
     It is a mistake to think that is well suited for tea water is heated by snow or ice is very soft. Although Chinese legends about tea refers to such water, resulting, in particular, of fresh snow deposited on Sakura and harvested for the preparation of particularly delicate tea, in today's ecologically unfavorable fact, if there is no urgent need, it is better to beware of this type of experiment . It follows that the choice of the water is low: the natural key and a spring in the mountains or in the woods, away from the fast river villages, even better - is flowing glacial lake.
Under the hands of us, of course, the water "tap", but we know that it is chlorinated and goes a long way for the rusty pipes. For this reason, tap water is necessary to defend long, sometimes daily, skipping, if possible, through the filter. It is now rare in Russia where you can drink water from the tap for tea or food, if you do not pass it through a filter.
     A good solution is to use the tea sold in bottles and large bottles natural pure water, but not mineralized and carbonated. It is important to remember that no matter how valuable a quality water, brewing tea is allowed only one boiled water, as will be discussed more below. For this reason, to prepare water for tea better in a small volume of water each time commensurate with the portion as it is required.
How to brew tea
     Pouring water into a suitable kettle to boil, placing near the teapot, tea container and scoop (spoon), water will start to boil. It is advisable not to absent themselves from the kettle to listen to its sounds and to be ready to interrupt the boil at the right time. It is important to remember that the boiling water passes through three clearly distinguishable stages:
     The first stage, starting with the fact that from the bottom of the kettle up skips small air bubbles and groups of bubbles appear in the water surface pa kettle wall. Gradually, the number of bubbles bursting on the surface of more increases.
     The second stage, characterized by massive and rapid rise of the bubbles, which causes slight turbidity first, and then even whitening of water - like a fast flowing fontanel. It is boiling "white key" extremely short-lived and soon gives way to the third stage.
     The third stage - intensive bubbling water with the appearance on the surface of a large bursting bubbles, and then the - spatter. These sprays indicate that the water is strongly boil over, it becomes "dead."
     The point is that not only overboiled water, but also one whose boiling was stopped at the beginning of the third stage has unsuitable for brewing tea.
It follows a strict rule the boiling water must be interrupted in the second stage, at a time when she went "white keys". The immutability of the rules emphasize literally all the tea authority, whether in China, Russia or England.
     The Chinese have their own way describe the above-mentioned three stages of boiling water:
   The first phase (bubbles on the bottom of the kettle) - "rachy eyes."
   The second phase (water "smacked his" and the bubbles running up) ~ "fish-eye".
   The third stage (changing the tone of a boiling water) - "the wind in the pines."
     Boiling water should be immediately discontinued as soon as will hear the "sound of the wind" as the subsequent rapid bubbling means "waters of death".
The Chinese point out that boiling destroys long "life force of water." British, in turn, illustrate that good tea brew requires a large oxygen content in water, and it is the beginning of the rapid boiling quickly disappears.
     There is also a Russian tip how to determine the boiling stage at the hearing. At the first stage of boiling the kettle comes the delicate subtle solo sound: "Sang!" In the second stage the sound becomes noise awakened swarm. In the transition to the third stage of boiling sounds dramatically enhanced and grow randomly: "The process has started!" The goal is to stop the boiling just before "the process will" .If kettle for boiling water has a long curved beak, the water should be poured so that it covers the inner opening of the spout. As a result, the air above the water inside the kettle will be "locked" and will be a good resonator kettle sounds.
     After boiling water is interrupted at the right time, it should be quickly rinsed the teapot, if it was not done before (also hot water) to fill a portion of tea leaves and immediately pour boiling water over it. It is advisable to pour directly to the end, unless otherwise provided by the recipe.