Tea Time #1
I have been having conversations with many lovely bloggers following my It’s not coffee, it’s Chai post, and it turns out that there are many tea lovers out there including myself.
So I thought I would slot in between my fortnightly Eclectic Corner event a ‘Tea Experience’ on Tuesdays.
It will be the same process as in, open for a week and a half before closing to give time to have our cuppas of whatever is our fancy.
This event is for anything related to the ‘Experience of Tea Time’.
Imagine sitting with your friends, what would surround you, what would you drink, what would you eat, what crockery would you use, what might you talk about?
When you come to tea, please bring any of these elements, it might be a recipe, or a picture of your favourite cup, a photo of dark roasted coffee, a photo of friends chatting, a bouquet of flowers on the table, a cold refreshing drink for a Summer’s tea, anything really, even a piece of artwork hung on the wall to create a lovely visual setting or perhaps you found some interesting Pinterest pictures.
So any foods, any drinks, any items, art, even music, there are no restrictions, just come along to tea, both genders please and have some fun. Strike up some banter with your neighbour, see what they brought to the table and perhaps discover a new beverage or fill your tummy with some delicious cakes or finger sandwiches of the most delicate kind.
A few things to do:
- Please grab a badge to display
- Tag your post Tea Time (#1 or #2 etc depending on which week it is)
- When you write your post, please link back to my post that it relates to
- Please then come to my post back here and enter the URL in to the InLinkz which you will find below. This collects all the entries and displays thumbnails on the InLinkz page so everyone can congregate together, find out what everyone is doing and party!
Let the fun begin!
My contribution towards this Tea Time Party is Matcha Tea. I first discovered this through my Alexander Teacher who is just as avid a tea drinker as me but far more knowledgeable. He also favours most things Asian.
He allowed me a small tasting of this wonderful beverage and so it was with excitement this weekend that I saw a packet of high grade Matcha for sale in an organic shop where I was visiting a Christmas Market.
Tonight my eldest son had his piano lesson by his Japanese teacher and afterwards I showed her with enthusiasm what I had bought. She then asked me if I had the right things and educated me after my blank look of what was needed to prepare and drink this powdered tea.
Firstly, Matcha is usually drunk from a bowl. A small amount of powder is put in to this bowl and then boiled water added that has been left for a while. It is important that boiling water or too hot water is poured on to this tea as it eradicates the taste apparently. One then uses a small whisk, the one on the packet picture is some kind of bamboo one, being the authentic kind, I had to make do with a small metal one. Then the whisking begins, oh boy, one really has to whisk for a long time, the end effect is meant to be lots of tiny small bubbles.
This Matcha is then normally accompanied by Japanese sweets. I didn’t have any sweets so decided to team it up with newly purchased spelt, fruit and nut cookies.
I would say this, there is definitely a reason for sweets with Matcha, the spelt cookies though nice did not blend well, one does need to have something sweet with this.
On the packet it also describes Matcha Latte and puddings, so I might well save this for another ‘Tea Time’.
The Health Benefits of Matcha Tea
- The health benefits of matcha tea exceed those of green tea because when you drink matcha you ingest the whole leaf, not just the brewed water.
- One glass of matcha is the equivalent of 10 glasses of green tea in terms of its nutritional value and antioxidant content.
- For maximum nutritional benefit, matcha tea is unparalleled.
Some History about Matcha
(as taken from the Wikipedia)
Matcha is made from shade-grown tea leaves also used to make gyokuro. The preparation of matcha starts several weeks before harvest and can last up to 20 days, when the tea bushes are covered to prevent direct sunlight. This slows down growth, stimulates an increase in chlorophyll levels, turns the leaves a darker shade of green, and causes the production of amino acids, in particular L-Theanine. Only the finest tea buds are hand-picked. After harvesting, if the leaves are rolled out before drying as usual, the result will be gyokuro (jade dew) tea. However, if the leaves are laid out flat to dry, they will crumble somewhat and become known as tencha (碾茶). Tencha can then be de-veined, de-stemmed, and stone-ground to the fine, bright green, talc-like powder known as matcha.
It can take up to one hour to grind 30 grams of matcha.
Note that only ground tencha qualifies as matcha, and other powdered green teas, such as powdered sencha, are known as konacha (粉茶, lit. “powder tea”).
The flavour of matcha is dominated by its amino acids. The highest grades of matcha have more intense sweetness and deeper flavour than the standard or coarser grades of tea harvested later in the year
❤ ❤ ❤
Now I also find out that it is Andy Townsends birthday today so please if you know him and wish to dedicate your tea offering, be it cake, a racy song or whatever, please do so and lets get the birthday tea party going with a swing! If you wish to find out a little more about the birthday boy you can do so here as I just interviewed him: Andy’s Interview
Had I known it was his birthday in advance I would of course have baked him this: (might not be the right model but the intention is there, next year give me plenty of warning please Andy :-0 )
What have you got for me to enjoy for tea today?
Anything that might go with my Matcha, or something traditionally British or a surprise?
I look forward to seeing what my lovely tea or coffee drinking buddies have in store for me, Justine xx
Please click the picture below which will take you through to the InLinkz page to join the party & also perhaps take some time to say to the other entrants who can also be seen on the next page for anyone, even spectators who wish to look!