How to brew Ivan tea?

How to brew Ivan tea?

Even before the appearance of black (actually - red) tea in Russia, our ancestors used a plant called fireweed to make aromatic drinks. Its appearance is familiar to everyone: a tall stem with leaves, adorned with a cluster of lilac flowers on top. Fireweed does not grow individually, but inhabits large clearings, so gathering it is relatively easy - you just need to find a suitable meadow or swamp.

Step-by-step instructions for brewing fermented Ivan tea

Our tea has undergone the fermentation process, which is one of the steps in transforming the green plant into a ready-to-brew infusion. The degree of fermentation (oxidation and colonization by microorganisms) determines the richness of the brew obtained from the raw material. Usually, producers leave the leaves for fermentation for about a day, and then dry or roast them.

Fermented fireweed tea can be brewed in a teapot, thermos, or individually in a mug. Let's go through the simplest method.

  1. Determine the Quantity:

Standard proportions: 2-3 teaspoons (4-8 gram) of Ivan tea per teapot with a volume of 500 ml. This will result in a strong infusion. However, if you don't like strong tea or for any other reason it's not recommended for you, you can prepare a lighter drink using 1-2 gram per 200 ml.

  1. Preparation:

Rinse a clean clay (or porcelain) teapot with boiling water, add the fireweed tea, and cover with a lid. Meanwhile, prepare the water: the temperature should not exceed 90 degrees Celsius, and ideally, it should be 85 degrees Celsius. Boiling water will spoil the taste and destroy the beneficial substances.

  1. Brewing:

Pour a little hot water into the teapot, filling it about 1/3 full, and close the lid. After 5 minutes, add the remaining water, stir, and let it steep for 15 minutes. Optionally, you can wrap the teapot in a linen towel to make the infusion even richer.

  1. Re-brewing:

The peculiarity of fireweed tea is that the same brew can be used several times - you can brew our Ivan tea up to 3 times, similar to pu'er or white tea, for example.

Cold brewing Ivan tea

If you want to not just enjoy tea but also get the maximum benefit, you can try the cold method. Pour cool water over the tea and let it infuse for 12 hours. The amount of ingredients is calculated as 1 tablespoon of tea per 1 liter of water.

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