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74

Yep… in the world of pu’erh, I am still so much a newbie. Perhaps with enough consumption, I’ll be able to distinguish beyond sheng/shu (like I can now distinguish a bit between different straight black teas), but until then, my palate remains terribly unrefined.

I still find that sheng is much more to my liking; it doesn’t brew up nearly as dark and inky as many shus I’ve tried, and the flavour tends to be more sharp and spicy than a mellow shu (and also, I don’t tend to notice things like earthiness and fishiness, which I still have trouble with).

Anyhow, I attempted to use about 2 tsp of this cake for my ~8-10oz. cup, and gave the pu’erh a 15 second rinse prior to a 30 second infusion. I’m quite pleased with the results – pleasant, light flavour (but lots of it), and that characteristic “sheng” flavour. It’s also quite smooth, which is very enjoyable. Unfortunately… that’s about all I can tell you. I’m enjoying it while reading/writing about antioxidant activity assays, and it’s a welcome distraction, heh. Hopefully I’ll have the chance for another few infusions later this morning, or tomorrow.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec
Tealizzy

Is that what your thesis is about? Antioxidants? Sounds interesting… I have a chemistry background.

Sil

Her thesis is on asparagus grin

Kittenna

Sil & Tealizzy – yep, asparagus, but more specifically, the genetic variation in phytochemical content and retention of phytochemicals during cooking. Of course, the phytochemicals in question are mostly of note due to their antioxidant capabilities, so I did a few antioxidant activity assays for my cooking trial. It was a part of my project that had been tacked on mid-way, so I hadn’t written a lit review about it yet, which is what I was/am doing. :D

Sil

Blahblahblah….asparagus….blah blah blah :)

I kid of course ;)

Kittenna

Nope, that’s ok… My boyfriend and his mom do the same thing, but I kind of wish that they would at least try to understand instead of assuming it’s too complicated!

Sil

lol i actually wouldn’t mind reading your thesis sometime :)

Kittenna

It’s currently at about 47 pages :D Which includes my intro, much of my lit review, and my materials and methods. No results, discussion, figures, tables, references, extraneous front matter…. hahahahahaha it’s going to be long .

Tealizzy

Your thesis sounds interesting, and you get to do cooking too! Fun! I totally understand about people not even trying to understand what you do. Good luck with the write-up!

Ze_Teamaker

That sounds like a good essay. I always wondered if vegetables lose some of their minerals and beneficial properties when they are cooked. I know the broccoli pretty much gets destroyed when you boil it (in flavor as well).

Indigobloom

When I cook, (if boiling that is) I try to use the water in something else like a sauce or soup etc. Dunno if that saves any antioxidants or anything but I figure it can’t hurt!

OMGsrsly

OMG that is so cool!

Kittenna

Well, it was interesting before I spent two years on it! :P And yes – nutrients are definitely lost when veggies are boiled, so it’s actually in general not the best way to cook them! Steaming is better. So yes, Indigobloom – using the cooking water from boiling is actually a good idea based on some prelim results I have – the one phytochemical I was looking at was definitely lost from the spears… and ended up in the cooking water! Didn’t get destroyed, just leached out. Sadly I didn’t get to test all the cooking liquid as I wanted; it was cut from my project due to lack of time.

Ze_Teamaker

Hey, at least you are doing one. I about choked on my tea when I read that you typed up 47 pages. I already have a hard time doing 2000 word research papers for school.

Kittenna

LOL a sign of how tired I am – I actually meant 57! 16.5 of Materials & Methods + 40-ish of Lit Review. I should go home and sleep…

OMGsrsly

I think pretty much anything is really neat until you spend 2+ years full time on it. :)

Indigobloom

aw that’s sad your project had to cut the water study out! interesting to know, I’ll have to tell Mum.. she always boils veggies

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Comments

Tealizzy

Is that what your thesis is about? Antioxidants? Sounds interesting… I have a chemistry background.

Sil

Her thesis is on asparagus grin

Kittenna

Sil & Tealizzy – yep, asparagus, but more specifically, the genetic variation in phytochemical content and retention of phytochemicals during cooking. Of course, the phytochemicals in question are mostly of note due to their antioxidant capabilities, so I did a few antioxidant activity assays for my cooking trial. It was a part of my project that had been tacked on mid-way, so I hadn’t written a lit review about it yet, which is what I was/am doing. :D

Sil

Blahblahblah….asparagus….blah blah blah :)

I kid of course ;)

Kittenna

Nope, that’s ok… My boyfriend and his mom do the same thing, but I kind of wish that they would at least try to understand instead of assuming it’s too complicated!

Sil

lol i actually wouldn’t mind reading your thesis sometime :)

Kittenna

It’s currently at about 47 pages :D Which includes my intro, much of my lit review, and my materials and methods. No results, discussion, figures, tables, references, extraneous front matter…. hahahahahaha it’s going to be long .

Tealizzy

Your thesis sounds interesting, and you get to do cooking too! Fun! I totally understand about people not even trying to understand what you do. Good luck with the write-up!

Ze_Teamaker

That sounds like a good essay. I always wondered if vegetables lose some of their minerals and beneficial properties when they are cooked. I know the broccoli pretty much gets destroyed when you boil it (in flavor as well).

Indigobloom

When I cook, (if boiling that is) I try to use the water in something else like a sauce or soup etc. Dunno if that saves any antioxidants or anything but I figure it can’t hurt!

OMGsrsly

OMG that is so cool!

Kittenna

Well, it was interesting before I spent two years on it! :P And yes – nutrients are definitely lost when veggies are boiled, so it’s actually in general not the best way to cook them! Steaming is better. So yes, Indigobloom – using the cooking water from boiling is actually a good idea based on some prelim results I have – the one phytochemical I was looking at was definitely lost from the spears… and ended up in the cooking water! Didn’t get destroyed, just leached out. Sadly I didn’t get to test all the cooking liquid as I wanted; it was cut from my project due to lack of time.

Ze_Teamaker

Hey, at least you are doing one. I about choked on my tea when I read that you typed up 47 pages. I already have a hard time doing 2000 word research papers for school.

Kittenna

LOL a sign of how tired I am – I actually meant 57! 16.5 of Materials & Methods + 40-ish of Lit Review. I should go home and sleep…

OMGsrsly

I think pretty much anything is really neat until you spend 2+ years full time on it. :)

Indigobloom

aw that’s sad your project had to cut the water study out! interesting to know, I’ll have to tell Mum.. she always boils veggies

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Bio

I have always been a tea fan (primarily herbals and Japanese greens/oolongs) but in the last year or so, tea has become increasingly more appealing as not only a delicious, calming drink, but as a relatively cheap, healthy reward or treat to give myself when I deserve something. I should clarify that, however; the reward is expanding my tea cupboard, not drinking tea – I place no restrictions on myself in terms of drinking anything from my cupboard as that would defeat my many goals!

My DavidsTea addiction was born in late 2011, despite having spent nearly a year intentionally avoiding their local mall location (but apparently it was just avoiding the inevitable!). I seem to have some desire to try every tea they’ve ever had, so much of my stash is from there, although I’ve recently branched out and ordered from numerous other companies.

I like to try and drink all my teas unaltered, as one of the main reasons I’m drinking tea other than for the flavour is to be healthy and increase my water intake without adding too many calories! I’ve found that the trick in this regard is to be very careful about steeping time, as most teas are quite pleasant to drink straight as long as they haven’t been oversteeped. However, I tend to be forgetful (particularly at work) when I don’t set a timer, resulting in a few horrors (The Earl’s Garden is not so pleasant after, say, 7+ minutes of steeping).

I’m currently trying to figure out which types of teas are my favourites. Herbals are no longer at the top; oolongs have thoroughly taken over that spot, with greens a reasonably close second. My preference is for straight versions of both, but I do love a good flavoured oolong (flavoured greens are really hit or miss for me). Herbals I do love iced/cold-brewed, but I drink few routinely (Mulberry Magic from DavidsTea being a notable exception). I’m learning to like straight black teas thanks to the chocolatey, malty, delicious Laoshan Black from Verdant Tea, and malty, caramelly flavoured blacks work for me, but I’m pretty picky about anything with astringency. Lately I’ve found red rooibos to be rather medicinal, which I dislike, but green rooibos and honeybush blends are tolerable. I haven’t explored pu’erh, mate, or guayasa a great deal (although I have a few options in my cupboard).

I’ve decided to institute a rating system so my ratings will be more consistent. Following the smiley/frowny faces Steepster gives us:

100: This tea is amazing and I will go out of my way to keep it in stock.

85-99: My core collection (or a tea that would be, if I was allowing myself to restock everything!) Teas I get cravings for, and drink often.

75-84: Good but not amazing; I might keep these in stock sparingly depending on current preferences.

67-74: Not bad, I’ll happily finish what I have but probably won’t ever buy it again as there’s likely something rated more highly that I prefer.

51-66: Drinkable and maybe has some aspect that I like, but not really worth picking up again.

34-50: Not for me, but I can see why others might like it. I’ll make it through the cup and maybe experiment with the rest to get rid of it.

0-33: It’s a struggle to get through the cup, if I do at all. I will not willingly consume this one again, and will attempt to get rid of the rest of the tea if I have any left.

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