Slow cooking is hot these days! And if you've ever cooked a salmon this way, then you know about the smooth and 'melt in your mouth' texture of it. But have you ever heard about slow and cold brewed tea with zero bitterness? If you haven't then it's something you should definitely try out this summer.
Yes, it's gonna take much longer than getting a quick tea fix with tea bags. But hey, life is short, brew some good tea.
Step 1: Why Cold Brew Your Tea?
Before we head straight to the easy recipe, here's a list of reasons why cold brewed tea is awesome:
- Flavor: Cold water extract a different chemical balance compared to hot water. What happens is that less catechins and caffeine is extracted, resulting in less bitterness. The infusion will be surprisingly full of natural flavor and sweetness.
- Low caffeine: cold brewed tea contains about 75% less caffeine to normal tea. Great for tea lovers who are to sensitive to caffeine. Less caffeine, also means there's a lower chance for tea to upset the stomach, an often experienced side effect, especially with green tea.
- Experience: This doesn't mean that cold brewing is superior to hot brewing. It's just a different and exciting way for foodies to experiment with tea.
- Convenience: It's super easy.
Convinced? Then let's move on to the recipe!
Step 2: What Do You Need for Cold Brewing Tea?
Here's what you'll need:
- 1 tea bag or 10 grams of loose leaf tea.
- 0.5 ltr (17 oz) of water
- pitcher or teapot
Notes & Tips:
- Any type of tea including black, green, white and oolong tea is suitable to cold brew. For loose tea, some types such as certain oolong and pu erh teas are tightly compressed. If that's the case first rinse them with hot water. This will allow the leaves to unfurl a bit, making them ready for cold brewing.
- If you want to brew more than the amount shown above, simply increase the amount of tea leaves and water proportionately.
We tested this recipe with a loose leaf Dragon Well green tea as you can see in the pictures. Definitely recommended for cold brewing!
Do I need a special cold tea brewer?
Nope. Anything from a teapot or pitcher to a soft drink bottle can function as a cold tea brewer. Just make sure the size is sufficient for the amount of cold brewed tea you're planning to make.
Should I use loose tea or tea bags?
Both loose tea and tea bags are suitable for this recipe. If you want to find out what tastes better, simply try use both to make a cold brew tea yourself :)
What tea type is the best?
Any tea type that can be infused with hot water can also be brewed in cold water. It's just a matter of increasing the steeping duration to reach the same level of flavor intensity. Just try to cold brew whatever tea you've at home first. Afterwards, we recommend trying out green and oolong teas as tend to work pretty well.
Step 3: Add Tea Into the Teapot
The first step is to add the tea leaves or bag into the teapot. As mentioned before, you'll need to match each tea bag or 10 gram of loose tea with 0.5 ltr (17 oz) of water.
- If you're planning to serve the tea later with ice, then double the amount of tea. That's because, ice cubes will later dilute the flavor of cold-brewed tea.
Step 4: Pour Water in the Teapot
Once the tea is inside the teapot, then you'll need to pour water in the teapot. Make sure the water is at or below room temperature as we're going for the cold brewing experience.
Step 5: Store in Fridge
Keep the tea in the fridge for at least 6 hours before it's ready to serve. 6 hours is pretty long, but it's not that you're actively waiting for it. You'll just have to plan ahead. Cold brew the tea early in the morning for use in the afternoon, or steep it in the evening for next day use.
Don't let the tea steep under room temperature. Bacteria will develop! So it's crucial that you put the tea in the fridge for slow brewing.
Can I let it brew for longer?
Yes, sure. Unlike brewing with hot water, it's very hard to over steep with cold brewing.
Step 6: Serve and Sip
Once the steeping time has finally passed you'll see that the tea liquor has developed a pretty nice color. Serve it pure or optionally add some ice to keep it chill.
Sweeten your cold brewed tea, but before you do that....
Before you add any sugar, we suggest you try the tea without it first, especially if it's your first experience with cold brewing. With cold brewing you'll end up with much more sweetness from mother nature as compared to hot brewing.
If you still prefer it a bit sweeter we suggest to use honey or maple syrup. Those are more liquid compared to sugar, and so it will more easily dissolve in cold tea.
That's it. I hope this guide helps and let me know if there's any question. If you've tried this recipe out yourself, then it would be great if you could share your experience in the comment section below. Thanks!