Monday, August 17, 2015


During college I spent a semester in Ireland. The program I was with involved meeting lots of different people all over the country. Everyone offered tea and coffee. For the first few weeks, I asked for coffee because I didn't care for tea. The coffee was usually pretty bad. Once we went somewhere and coffee wasn't offered, so I drank some tea. Delicious! That was when I developed my theory. This is not intended to be a serious theory, so don't be offended.

Teacher in the Kitchen: The proper way to make a cup of tea.

My theory is that Americans drink coffee because they don't know how to make tea, and the Irish drink tea because they don't know how to make coffee.

Interestingly enough, I have presented on this topic during classes for both my undergraduate  graduate degrees!

If you think you don't like tea, chances are you're just making it wrong. I drink coffee most of the time. I'm not trying to convert anyone, but if you think you don't like tea, I'm encouraging you to try it again for the first time.

Teacher in the Kitchen: The proper way to make a cup of tea.

1. Warm the pot (or cup). I usually just fill it up with hot water from the tap.
2. Boil the water! (My mom just made the water hot. That is the key reason I thought I hated tea!)

Teacher in the Kitchen: The proper way to make a cup of tea.

3. Pour the water into the pot (or cup) and then put in a tea bag. Don't pour the water directly onto the teabag. If you are making a pot of tea, use a bag per cup of water +1 for the pot.

4. Allow the tea to brew for a few minutes, then remove the tea bag.

5. Add some milk and sugar.

Teacher in the Kitchen: The proper way to make a cup of tea.

(In Ireland they used plenty of milk and not much sugar. I was often asked if I liked to have tea with my sugar.)

My favorite tea is Twinings Irish Breakfast. These directions are for black tea. Green tea and herbal tea are different. 

This is my final installment for my Teacher in the Kitchen summer series. Thanks so much to everyone who has linked up! This linkup will be open for a month. I'd love to hear about your kitchen adventures.

Are you going to try tea again for the first time? I'd love to hear about it! Leave a comment.

If you found this post to be interesting or fun, I'd love for you to connect with me!

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  1. Hey Deb. We are big tea drinkers in my family so this post prompted many memories. My side of the family, and all our Irish relatives and English friends, warm the pot with a bit of the boiling water, then pour that bit out before filling the pot. Jonathan's side makes it like you. Warming the pot keeps the tea warmer longer, but according to my Nana, the tea was brewed better in a warmed pot and she could taste the difference... we Irish are always telling stories, though. I love tea with milk and sugar, also part of my family tradition, but I save it for a treat and drink it straight up usually. Tea has lots of healthful properties but the milk undoes them all! Just wondered your thoughts on the priming of the pot tradition that is shared by many cultures. See you around. Kathleen Kidpeople Classroom

  2. p.s. Lucky you that you got to spend a semester in Ireland! I've only been once, but the next time I cross the pond thats were I'm headed again. I want to look up relatives and old family homesteads. I would love to go on a storytelling tour, and would love to go with a group of teachers... wanna go? :) Kathleen again.

  3. I love tea, but I've been making it wrong! I'm going to start trying it the way you described. You'll notice that I have NEVER linked up for Teacher in the Kitchen. I love reading the posts, but I rarely cook! I'm spoiled. My husband usually does it. Have a wonderful year!
    Laughter and Consistency


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