1. My experience with Tea
The reference to “perfect” is not scientifically proven, but a result of feedback from family, co-workers and countless friends. I have been making cups of tea from a young age but my professional experience expanded whilst working in television production as a runner for nearly 2 years. This job required you to make tea - a lot, sometimes up to 100 a day - for producers and whoever else asked.
2. What you Need
- A mug: preferably ceramic with a minimum of 4mm mug wall thickness.
- A tea bag: one “English Breakfast” tea bag. I’m not judgemental on brand or shape of the bag.
- Water: preferably good water, none of that tap water in London. If you live in London (or have similar water freshness issues) invest in a water filter.
- A kettle (and access to electricity).
- Milk: preferably semi-skimmed. Real milk too - none of that UHT nuclear-holocaust-single-serving packaged milk.
- A teaspoon: choose a teaspoon that isn’t too deep.
- Sugar if needed.
If you plan on using skimmed milk please leave now. You do not deserve to drink this cup of tea.
4. Part 1: Preparation
Pour fresh water into the kettle and turn it on. Make the effort - don’t use double-boiled water! During the boil, you now have time to collect all the necessary ingredients and prepare everything.
Place one tea bag into a mug and do nothing else. For multiple cups of tea, use one tea bag per mug - you’re not being clever by “double mugging” (a term to share one tea bag between two cups of tea).
6. Part 2: Pour & Wait
Once the water is boiled, pour the hot water into the mug. Now, leave it alone for 3-6 minutes with nothing but hot water and the tea bag in the mug.
6 minutes may sound like a long time but, for me anyway, I don’t even drink my cup of tea until it cools down slightly. I’ve worked out that minute 8 holds the key to the perfect tea drinking temperature.
N.B. I’m quite forgetful so make sure you don’t simply forget the cup of tea - otherwise you’ll miss the perfect cup and you’ll be upset.
Your cuppa should now look a little like this…
8. Part 3: The Clamp
Your patience is dwindling now, but you’re getting closer to hot-drink-heaven.
Get your teaspoon and clamp the tea bag between the spoon and the wall of the mug. Doing this will release a lot more flavour than if you were to simply pick the tea bag out and chuck it in the bin - what a waste!
10. Part 4: Finishing Touches
Only now can milk and sugar be added. Milk first, then sugar. Stir at least 2 revolutions per second for at least 5 seconds. Expel spoon and throw in the sink.
Your “perfect” cuppa is now ready to drink!
11. Evaluation: Your Perfect Colour
Tea can have a different colour dependent on the strength. On the chart below you can see many variations of tea colour preferences. For me, I consider the perfect colour to be somewhere between “Cuppa Cabana” and “Nigerian Sunset”
You will now be drinking a perfect cuppa thanks to me. You’re welcome.
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