Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Sun Tea?

What was I thinking? Sun Tea in Oregon? Not gonna happen. My big jug has been sitting on the counter since early June, but I have not made any Sun Tea yet. Cloudy weather just does not produce the right brew. So it’s back to the tea kettle on the stove and the Rainy Day Tea method. I am liking Celestial Seasoning’s Mango Darjeeling and Lipton’s White Tea with Mango and Peach.

Why am I writing this now? Well it is the hour of the day that is the Tea Time of my Scottish-influenced childhood. 4:00 p.m. and just about the right time to spoil your supper with a scone or some other yummy treat along with a cup of freshly brewed tea.

The making of which is a bit of a ceremony and an art form. To start with…never…ever…use water that has already been boiled once and is just sitting in the kettle. Empty the kettle and put on fresh cold water. Bring to a boil, but don’t let it “roil.” Use a tea ball or a lidded spoon if you have one or just throw the leaves in and strain them out as you pour the tea which has steeped for five minutes in a china teapot tucked under a handmade tea cozy.

If you are dipping and dunking a tea bag in and out of some microwaved hot water for a few seconds you may be having a hot drink but it is not TEA. Making tea “from scratch” is like baking. You can use shortcuts but it is never quite the same and never quite as good.

So fix yourself a cuppa and join me in relaxing as the afternoon wanes. A nice segue to the evening and a ritual to pamper yourself.


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