Tea is a ceremonial affair in many countries and even in a hurried lifestyle there exists nothing more relaxing or centering than the quiet preparation of herbal tea.
Many herbs need to be prepared in a unique manner. While the general core of tea making is easily understood (boil/steep/drink) you can expand the affect and enjoyment by following some basic steps:
Flavor consists of many aspects, the most potent being taste. But like watching a film without the background music, taste without aroma is not as expressive. The healing power of many herbs, especially digestives, can be realized in part merely by the aroma of the tea. We now know that the sense of smell triggers action within the body that can have powerful and far-reaching effects.
Good tasting water makes good tea. Clean water is essential and in most cases the water needs to be as hot as possible to steep with. Which is why a “rolling” boil is required by most “tea label” instructions.
The teapot is of concern as well as the pan used to boil the water. Most afficianados of tea never use metal for even boiling the water. We won’t go into the debate of using aluminum but suffice it to say that Chinese ceramic herb pots are the favorite of many tea drinkers. Using a coffee maker is not suggested neither are the use of microwaves. After all it’s for you so keep it as much of a ritual as possible.
Unless you’re running out the door with your tea in a commute mug, relax and immerse yourself in the cup. We have senses, beyond the five we normally accept and losing one in a cup of tea can be as renewing as a nap. .