08 December 2010

Moroccan Mint Tea














Ingredients:
Loose “gunpowder” tea (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gunpowder_tea)
Water
Sugar
Fresh mint (or other herbs)

Big tea pot for boiling water
Other tea pot for the tea
Tea glasses
Tray for serving

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  1. Boil water in a big tea pot.

  2. Find a tea pot that has a mini-strainer between the spout and the main body of the tea pot.

  3. Put a handful of loose tea in the second tea pot, just enough to cover the bottom circle. This is tricky, because if you put too much, the tea will taste metallic when you’re done, and if you put too little, it will taste watery. What I read on the internet says 1 teaspoon for every 5 oz. of water you are going to use. It all depends on the size of your tea pot.

  4. Once your water has boiled, pour a cup’s worth in through the top of the second tea pot and let it sit for a minute or two.

  5. Once this first cup has slightly steeped, pour it out into a tea cup, and set aside. The leaves will have slightly opened up, but usually not all the way. This is the “true tea” and will be used later. Don’t forget about it!

  6. Now, pour a cup’s worth of the hot water again in your second tea pot. Swirl it around a bit. This step is called washing the tea, and it gets all the impurities out and keeps the tea from being too bitter. Once you have swirled 5 or 6 times, pour the water out into the sink.

  7. Wash the tea a second time.

  8. Find your cup of “true tea” and pour it back into the tea pot. Fill the rest of the tea pot with your leftover hot water. Make sure to leave room for mint and sugar, which you will add later.

  9. Put the “tea” tea pot back on the stove, until it boils. When you see the tea leaves rise up to the top of the pot, you know it’s done. Watching for the tea leaves also prevents it from boiling over.

  10. Once your tea has boiled again, put in sprigs of fresh mint and sugar. Adding the sugar is also tricky, because it depends on the size of your tea pot. Add less, pour some of the finished tea out to taste it, and add sugar to your liking.

  11. Make sure to stir the tea in the pot so that the sugar is well mixed. Moroccans will “turn” the tea, meaning pouring it into a cup, and then back into the pot, in order to mix it, but it’s faster just to use a spoon.

  12. Arrange your tea pot and tea glasses (one more glass than number of people you are serving, a tradition in case a guest shows up) on the tray and serve. Make sure to lift the tea pot high when you serve it, both to cool off the tea, and to impress your guests!

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Another (easier) method: http://www.wonderhowto.com/how-to-brew-moroccan-mint-tea-242121/

She puts the mint and sugar in first, which is strange to me. Moroccans have told me that if you do this, the tea will not taste the same, and when you put it back on the burner to heat it up, you will burn the sugar and the mint. I also saw the color of her tea when it was finished, and it looks really weak to me. This method might not get you the “MAN tea” that some of my students really enjoyed... :-)

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