Nov 20, 2017
Despite this being my ninth autumn in Japan, I have never once made myself a pot of green tea. My mother-in-law was quick to make the drink pot by pot when we shared the same abode and I grew used to the slight bitterness of the beverage then. This was such a big transition in taste for me that the sweet Arizona Iced Green Tea that I found strange and bitter stateside now tastes far too sweet, even disgustingly so. Despite my new love for the hot green beverage of Japan, my lack of cooking skill and love for black tea has culminated in six years worth of green tea parcels that tend to get sent to friends or expire in my cupboard.
Well, that ends today. Today I will make my first pot of green tea from tea leaves. Welcome to the adventure.
Any time you try something new in the kitchen or handle something you are unfamiliar with, it is a good idea to check the internet for tips. Since I have never seen a packet of tea leaves give me instruction on how much to put into a cup or pot, I searched google and found the suggestion of five grams per cup of tea. Now the next problem. How many cups of tea would be held by this tiny teapot?
Does it look like it comes from 1990? It probably does. It is my guess that my husband’s parents sent him abroad with this back when he went to boarding school. I could be wrong, but the bigger problem here is that I have never seen him use it and do not know its size. Assuming cup refers to the size of a Japanese tea cup, the easiest way to find the answer to this problem is to find an appropriate cup. Fill the pot with normal water and see how many times you can fill the teacup. This little brown pot holds 2 cups of tea, by the standards of this cup.
Before you throw tea leaves into the bottom here, you can find screens for this at the 100 yen store that will make cleaning up a bit easier. My pot has a grating on the inside as well, to make the resulting tea all the more clear. Yay!
Insert your 5 grams of tea per cup. Then your recently-boiling water. Then wait. How long? According to the internet, 2 minutes is the standard. Then remove the leaves (easy if you have grating like this) and try the tea. If you'd like it darker, put the leaves back in for 30 seconds, then remove and check again. Repeat as necessary until you get an enjoyable green tea experience.
I found that 2 minutes was plenty of time and made an almost equally delicious second pot with the same leaves, so don't feel the need to change out the leaves after every pot until you've tried the results and know whether or not you enjoy them.
A working mom/writer/teacher, Jessica explores her surroundings in Miyagi-ken and Tohoku, enjoying the fun, quirky, and family friendly options the area has to offer.
My favorite part of green tea from a pot, has to be the second or third brew.
@edthethe I agree! It seems to get nicer after a brew or two, which is opposite to my natural intuition with black teas, where anything more than once can frequently wind up bitter or bland.