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Part of me wants to break down barriers, set people free and make the world a better place. A bigger part of me wants to sit on the sofa, drink tea and play through old Nintendo games.

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28/05/07 : Tea

At one time, I think I could have quite easily carved out a career as a cat burglar. I am also pretty sure that if I had have ever been caught breaking into someone's house, I would have ended up making the owners a cup of tea whilst waiting for the police to arrive.

The subject of tea seems to have popped up in the news a fair bit recently, ever since Tony Blair mentioned that he wanted to uphold the British tradition of a well-made cup of tea.

Looking through some of the related articles it appears that tea may reduce the risk of both ovarian cancer and skin cancer (that cup of tea in the picture must be a bit cold by the second article).

The latest research recommends using a teapot rather than dunking a bag in a cup.

Now, this is serious. Dunking a bag in a cup?!? I know that non-English people make tea this way (in the movies and on TV at least) but I didn't realise that people over here did that too! I'm shocked! How can people not know that you need to pour BOILING water ONTO the tea - before you even begin to think about milk and stuff?

I feel the need to educate people about this important matter, so here is a brief tutorial (if you think this is all too much fuss, you're working too hard and need to chill out a bit).

How to make the perfect cup of tea (according to Tim Sellers)

You will need:
a kettle full of fresh water
a teapot
a tea strainer
a teaspoon
mugs (not cups)
semi-skimmed milk
loose leaf Assam tea - preferably Twinings

Put the kettle on. Shortly before it boils, pour a little water into the teapot and swill it round to heat it up before pouring away.
Put one rounded teaspoon of tea per person into the pot and as soon as the kettle boils, add the water. You'll need to add just the right amount though - it's probably best to practice this beforehand.
Give it a good stir, put the lid on and leave it alone for exactly five minutes (this should give you enough time to find something to go with the tea, as detailed below).
Stir the tea again.
Pour a little milk into each mug - just enough to cover the bottom.
Pour the tea through the strainer into the mugs. You'll need to pour a little into each one to start with - if you fill up the first mug before moving onto the next one you'll find that the first one will be too weak and the last too strong (the finished product should be a rich coppery brown colour).
For best results, add a level teaspoon of sugar.
Stir well, sit down, relax and enjoy.

Tea goes well with most sweet and savoury foods, in particular:
Bacon and eggs
Marmite on toast (ordinary white sliced is fine, I prefer granary, make sure you use proper butter)
Cake (any)
Biscuits. For more on the biscuit issue, have a look at this site. I recommend Digestives (ordinary ones if you want to dunk, milk chocolate ones if not) - which absolutely must be McVities.

Posted by Tim at 18:24 [ permalink ]
Categories: Food and drink
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