Tag Archive | tea

100 days – Day 61: yet even more about my favourite beverage

100 days – Day 61: yet more about TEA!

 

image

100 days – Day 49: yet more about tea

100 days – Day 49:  More about Tea!

 

I tried pomegranate tea yesterday.  I know that sounds disgusting, but it was actually very refreshing.

 

image

 

image

 

Meanwhile, here’s a reprint of a famous article about tea, written by George Orwell

 

A Nice Cup of Tea By George Orwell

Evening Standard, 12 January 1946.

 

image

 

 

If you look up ‘tea’ in the first cookery book that comes to hand you will probably find that it is unmentioned; or at most you will find a few lines of sketchy instructions which give no ruling on several of the most important points.
This is curious, not only because tea is one of the main stays of civilization in this country, as well as in Eire, Australia and New Zealand, but because the best manner of making it is the subject of violent disputes.

When I look through my own recipe for the perfect cup of tea, I find no fewer than eleven outstanding points. On perhaps two of them there would be pretty general agreement, but at least four others are acutely controversial. Here are my own eleven rules, every one of which I regard as golden:

 

First of all, one should use Indian or Ceylonese tea. China tea has virtues which are not to be despised nowadays — it is economical, and one can drink it without milk — but there is not much stimulation in it. One does not feel wiser, braver or more optimistic after drinking it. Anyone who has used that comforting phrase ‘a nice cup of tea’ invariably means Indian tea.
Secondly, tea should be made in small quantities — that is, in a teapot. Tea out of an urn is always tasteless, while army tea, made in a cauldron, tastes of grease and whitewash. The teapot should be made of china or earthenware. Silver or Britanniaware teapots produce inferior tea and enamel pots are worse; though curiously enough a pewter teapot (a rarity nowadays) is not so bad.
Thirdly, the pot should be warmed beforehand. This is better done by placing it on the hob than by the usual method of swilling it out with hot water.
Fourthly, the tea should be strong. For a pot holding a quart, if you are going to fill it nearly to the brim, six heaped teaspoons would be about right. In a time of rationing, this is not an idea that can be realized on every day of the week, but I maintain that one strong cup of tea is better than twenty weak ones. All true tea lovers not only like their tea strong, but like it a little stronger with each year that passes — a fact which is recognized in the extra ration issued to old-age pensioners.
Fifthly, the tea should be put straight into the pot. No strainers, muslin bags or other devices to imprison the tea. In some countries teapots are fitted with little dangling baskets under the spout to catch the stray leaves, which are supposed to be harmful. Actually one can swallow tea-leaves in considerable quantities without ill effect, and if the tea is not loose in the pot it never infuses properly.
Sixthly, one should take the teapot to the kettle and not the other way about. The water should be actually boiling at the moment of impact, which means that one should keep it on the flame while one pours. Some people add that one should only use water that has been freshly brought to the boil, but I have never noticed that it makes any difference.
Seventhly, after making the tea, one should stir it, or better, give the pot a good shake, afterwards allowing the leaves to settle.
Eighthly, one should drink out of a good breakfast cup — that is, the cylindrical type of cup, not the flat, shallow type. The breakfast cup holds more, and with the other kind one’s tea is always half cold before one has well started on it.
Ninthly, one should pour the cream off the milk before using it for tea. Milk that is too creamy always gives tea a sickly taste.
Tenthly, one should pour tea into the cup first. This is one of the most controversial points of all; indeed in every family in Britain there are probably two schools of thought on the subject. The milk-first school can bring forward some fairly strong arguments, but I maintain that my own argument is unanswerable. This is that, by putting the tea in first and stirring as one pours, one can exactly regulate the amount of milk whereas one is liable to put in too much milk if one does it the other way round.
Lastly, tea — unless one is drinking it in the Russian style — should be drunk without sugar. I know very well that I am in a minority here. But still, how can you call yourself a true tealover if you destroy the flavour of your tea by putting sugar in it? It would be equally reasonable to put in pepper or salt. Tea is meant to be bitter, just as beer is meant to be bitter. If you sweeten it, you are no longer tasting the tea, you are merely tasting the sugar; you could make a very similar drink by dissolving sugar in plain hot water.

Some people would answer that they don’t like tea in itself, that they only drink it in order to be warmed and stimulated, and they need sugar to take the taste away. To those misguided people I would say: Try drinking tea without sugar for, say, a fortnight and it is very unlikely that you will ever want to ruin your tea by sweetening it again.
These are not the only controversial points to arise in connexion with tea drinking, but they are sufficient to show how subtilized the whole business has become. There is also the mysterious social etiquette surrounding the teapot (why is it considered vulgar to drink out of your saucer, for instance?) and much might be written about the subsidiary uses of tealeaves, such as telling fortunes, predicting the arrival of visitors, feeding rabbits, healing burns and sweeping the carpet. It is worth paying attention to such details as warming the pot and using water that is really boiling, so as to make quite sure of wringing out of one’s ration the twenty good, strong cups of that two ounces, properly handled, ought to represent.

(taken from The Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters of George Orwell, Volume 3, 1943-45, Penguin ISBN, 0-14-00-3153-7)

100 days – Day 29

100 days – Day 29 

More about tea!

Today will be a long one: up earlier than usual this morning, as, once more, I forgot to put the bin out.  Back indoors – and on with the kettle.  I’m now on my third cuppa of Whittard’s Russian Caravan, and there will be a few more gallons downed before noon.

And it has to be STRONG tea – none of the wishy-washy stuff that Morrissey drinks:

 

 I found this quote about weak tea quite amusing:

“I thought there was a hair in my tea but it turned out there was a crack in the bottom of the cup.” ~anonymous~

 

It’s a morning of sermon preparation – and that usually means procrastination and pit stops (or should that be PG Tipstops?) ; it’s so easy, and sometimes necessary for a tea break!

This afternoon sees an important debate at the General Assembly.  Hopefully, it will be conducted graciously and without rancour.  Now, if the main protagonists could just sit down over a nice cup of tea, a “balm in Gilead”, who knows what a becalming influence it could be.

 

image12

This evening, it’s Hamilton Accies v the Hobos in the first leg of the final play-offs for Premiership

 Somehow, I don’t think that it will be tea that I’ll be drinking!

 

 

 

100 days – Day 19

100 days – Day 19:  TEA!

 

There are few worse things than a tearoom in which “a pot of tea” has a solitary teabag floating in the hot water – the string of the bag with label draped over the side, like some dead trophy.  So often it’s weak, tasteless, and unappealing.

I’m reminded of another context – another drink – the barman making conversation as the punter takes his first sip of his newly pulled pint:  “Looks like rain” ; the reply, “Aye, tastes like it too”.

Some tea tastes like that!

In America recently, most of the time all I was able to get was Liptons.  One has to order “hot tea”, otherwise it’s some sweet iced liquid that’s served.  And one does not use tepid water poured into the cup first, followed by the tea bag as an afterthought!

 

the late Christopher Hitchens wrote:

It is already virtually impossible in the United States, unless you undertake the job yourself, to get a cup or pot of tea that tastes remotely as it ought to.

It’s quite common to be served a cup or a pot of water, well off the boil, with the tea bags lying on an adjacent cold plate. Then comes the ridiculous business of pouring the tepid water, dunking the bag until some change in color occurs, and eventually finding some way of disposing of the resulting and dispiriting tampon surrogate.

The drink itself is then best thrown away, though if swallowed, it will have about the same effect on morale as reading of the memoirs of President James Earl Carter

 

Just don’t bother on the Continent.  They haven’t a clue.  And as for Turkish “apple tea” which bazaar owners and hawkers and spivs try to inflict upon you in order to entice you into their store to sell you cheap knock off replica “designer” goods – forget it.

My late wife, Helen, used to take an electric  travelling kettle with us whenever we went on holiday abroad – and a goodly stock of Nambarie tea bags.

I need three cups in the morning to jump-start me for the day.  Three strong cups of Whittards Russian Caravan – no milk; no sugar; just tea

 

“Nice Cup Of Tea”

When I awoke this morning there was lights all around the place
To the bathroom mirror can that sight really be my face?
Go downstairs, the sunshine glares across the welcome mat
Slippers on, must get along to where the action’s at

And so the day breaks
Over motley cat and me
I read the Sunday paper
And have a nice cup of tea

So into the kitchen wondering, what I did last night
And open up the corn flakes that they says ‘Nutra sheds delight’
Rummage in the sink to find a plate, it’s almost clean
I think this is the worst state that the kitchen’s ever been

And so the day breaks
Over motley cat and me
I read the Sunday paper
And have a nice cup of tea

There’s nothing wrong and the kettle’s on
I think I’ll have a cup of tea
And it’s okay, it’s a lovely day
A lovely day for motley cat and me

Songwriters
BURNS, RAYMOND IAN

Published by
Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, ANGLO-ROCK, INC.

100 days – Day 17


100 days – Day 17

COFFEE!

 “Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and as sweet as love” – Turkish proverb.

 

I read that Starbucks is bringing its cheaper coffee brand, “Seattle’s Best Coffee”,  to the UK to compete with rivals such as McDonalds as it faces flagging sales.

Image

 

Now, I have to admit that I’m totally bamboozled by the huge range of coffees available in the likes of Starbucks and Costa Coffee.

 

from Starbuck’s website:

“Did you know there are over 87,000 different drink combinations at Starbucks. Why not try a syrup in your morning latte, or try soy in your mocha? A drizzle of buttery caramel on the top of your cappuccino? The possibilities are endless….discover your favourite.

  1. Hazelnut Macchiato
  2. Vanilla Macchiato
  3. Salted Caramel MochaSalted Caramel Mocha
  4. Vanilla Spice Latte
  5. Caffè Americano
  6. Flat White
  7. Caffè Latte
  8. Caffè Mocha
  9. Cappuccino
  10. Caramel Macchiato
  11. Espresso
  12. Espresso Con Panna
  13. Espresso Macchiato
  14. Flavoured Latte
  15. Iced Caffè Americano
  16. Iced Caffè Latte
  17. Iced Caffè Mocha
  18. Iced Caramel Macchiato
  19. Iced Flavoured Latte
  20. Iced Skinny Flavoured Latte
  21. Skinny Flavoured Latte
  22. White Chocolate Mocha

 

See what I mean?  Can you just get “a coffee”?

I remember that being the case.  It was “Do you want milk and sugar in it?”  That was it!

There used to be a Burger King at the east end of Princes Street in Edinburgh.  Many years ago, I once asked for a “black coffee, please”  The youth behind the counter then asked, “Do you want milk with it?”!!!!

 

Coffee cultivation first took place in southern Arabia; the earliest credible evidence of coffee-drinking appears in the middle of the 15th century in the Sufi shrines of Yemen. In East Africa and Yemen, coffee was used in native religious ceremonies. As these ceremonies conflicted with the beliefs of the Christian church, the Ethiopian Church banned the secular consumption of coffee until the reign of Emperor Menelik II. The beverage was also banned in Ottoman Turkey during the 17th century for political reasons and was associated with rebellious political activities in Europe

In the late 1500s, coffee had reached Europe and Vatican officials were clamoring to condemn it as Satanic. After all, it came from the Islamic world, so the Catholic church was understandably loath to embrace anything that came from the “land of the infidels.” According to legend, Vatican officials asked Pope Clement VIII to impose a ban on coffee, but he refused to do so before trying it first himself. Thus, he ordered that some coffee be prepared for him. He evidently enjoyed it very much because legends says that he remarked “This Satan’s drink is delicious…it would be a pity to let the infidels have exclusive use of it. We shall fool Satan by baptizing it.”

image

 

 BEING A TRUE BRIT, HOWEVER, YOU CANNAE WHACK A GOOD STRONG CUP OF TEA!!!!!

TheWeeFlea.com

The Blog of David Robertson

More Enigma Than Dogma

Relationships, Culture & Current Events

Curriculum of the Spiritual Life

Poems, Prayers, & Proverbs that speak to what it means to be a "living curriculum" of the Christian Life.

Attila Ovari

Loving Life and Inspiring Others

Iain Macwhirter

Read Iain in The Herald and Sunday Herald, every Wednesday and Sunday.

Sky Pilot

ramblings of a reformed ecclesiastic

lizlovingandlearning

personal reflections on life, the universe & everything

The Immortal Jukebox

A Blog about Music and Popular Culture

100 DAYS

various positions

lauraagudelo272

This WordPress.com site is the bee's knees

TextsInContext

Faith Seeking Understanding

Richard W. Strachan's Blog

Writing and reading

bigirishman

Just another WordPress.com site

In an Irish Home

What Life is Really Like Behind the Hall Door

Guido Fawkes

Parliamentary plots and conspiracy

waverley710, The Ramblings of a Wannabe theologian.

This WordPress.com site is the bee's knees

Jim Palmer

Inner Anarchist

Love's Work

Reflections on living into ministry

It Is What It Is

Dr. Rex .... Blogging for change.

thewayhomegamer

Just another WordPress.com site

You Got to be Kidding's Blog

Humor and musings from all around the Internet

David's Commonplace Book

Random stuff that interests me

Tentsmuir

"Haud Gaan!" - Scots for 'Keep Pressing Forward!'

Soul Destruction

London call girl book & diary series - exposing the dark world and harsh reality of life as a drug addicted call girl

beyondentertainmentblog

entertainment without boundaries

Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander

Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam

Thoughts Of A Near 40 Something

Nothing Exciting But True - May Contain Trains

Toad's Great Adventure

"I will, then, be a toad." -- Stephen Crane

Leaving Fundamentalism

various positions

All Things Rabyd

A blog dedicated to the thoughts, opinions, ideas and random madness of Edward W. Raby, Sr. - Pastor, Theologian, Philosopher, Writer, Bodybuilder and Football Fan. "Yes, the dog is foaming at the mouth. Don't worry, He just had pint of beer and is trying to scare you." This is a Theology Pub so drink your theology responsibly or have a designated driver to get you home as theology can be as intoxicating as alcohol.

Soul Gatherings

Spiritual Moments in the Human Experience

Anglican Memes

a humour site about the Church of England

A Sacred Conspiracy

To conspire is to act in harmony towards an agreed upon goal. God wants to conspire with us in unconditional, reckless, surrendered love.

Lavender and Broken Bones

FOREVER REINVENTING

Christus Pro Nobis

Christ for us

revjamespb

Developing Theological ideas

Laodicea

Qui vicerit, dabo ei sedere mecum in throno meo

NUCLEARMIND es PLUS ANIMI EST ...

More than a feeling ...

Bucket List Publications

Indulge- Travel, Adventure, & New Experiences

dghealth

Opinions & ideas in NHS Dumfries and Galloway

Chicks In The Mitt

...we have a blog, therefore, we must be interesting...

The China Penguin

waddling from rice fields to ice-fields

peterstudyleave

A blog of Peter's Study Leave 2012

Journey to a healthy life...

and the maddness on the way there

%d bloggers like this: