About living and creating in Michigan's Upper Peninsula

Saturday, February 9, 2013

To Infuse or to Strain?

I have to admit I'm a bit fascinated by the British. If you watch Downton Abbey, you get what I mean. For me, it started as a kid when our TV broke and my parents decided not to get it fixed. We would all sit in the living room and read. My dad had a healthy collection of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and I spent many an afternoon immersed in the goings on in the English countryside with Holmes & Watson. Baker St. was a familiar escape.
So last night we were flipping channels and came across a recent Sherlock Holmes movie that was just beginning. The scene was a waiter at a fancy restaurant pouring tea using one of the gadgets shown above sitting on top of the cup. My husband asked if this might be a better way to serve tea - keeping the tea leaves loose in the pot, and straining when serving. Turns out, it is!

Most people use infusers, like these. 
They're used by filling the mesh with loose tea and immersing it in the teapot or cup while brewing. The leaves don't have much room to expand with this method.

Whereas, with a strainer,
the leaves are loose in the pot, giving them plenty of room to float about and expand. The leaves are strained during serving, and indeed this is the traditional British way! Guess I'll be buying a strainer to experience tea properly!

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