Steep for 3 minutes - getting serious with my tea

I started drinking loose leaf green tea about a year ago. I love it, I drink it daily and I’ve learned that I like my tea to remain hot and enjoy trying to educate myself on the different teas…etc. I just recently purchased a cast iron teapot and a warmer, but I have a question. Everything I read about green tea says you should steep for 3 minutes and it’s ready to serve. After pouring my first cup, why do I not remove the leaves? Why should I keep them in there and remain to steep?

5 Replies
jamielynn said

I believe you’re supposed to remove the leaves after the 3 minutes. That’s what it means when it says “steep for 3 minutes”. Unless I’m misunderstanding your question!

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Having worked with fresh oolong and green teas for some time now, I can safely say that 3 minutes, to me, seems a very long time to steep your green tea. Most teas require a certain degree of experimentation with leaf quantity, steep time and water temperature. I can definitely say you shouldn’t steep green tea with boiling water or you’ll “cook” the leaves. If you were to pour the tea into a glass container and look at it up against the light after it has steeped, it should look slightly luminescent green, rather than yellow. If it’s yellow or amber in colour than it is either over-steeped or cooked. I know this seems rather ambiguous, but with practice, that elusive green colour becomes easier and easier to attain, and really transforms your green tea drinking experience!

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I agree with everything said above! I just want to add that I like to steep my green tea for about 2 minutes, sometimes less. If the leaves stay in the water too long, the tea becomes bitter and astringent. If you want more flavor, use more leaf, but never more time. And if it’s a good quality tea, you can steep it again, so using more leaf doesn’t feel so extravagant. :)

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Thanks everyone. Removing leaves this morning after approx. 3 minutes. I’ve done this with my single serve cup, but not with the cast iron teapot.

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TeaVivre said

for the green loose leaf tea, the steeping time also depend on what kind of green tea you are preparing to steep, here is a brief information about different green tea and its steeping time:

Dragon well Green tea——176 ºF (80 ºC)—— 1 to 2 minutes
Taimu Maojian Green Tea——194 ºF (90 ºC)——1 to 2 minutes
Xin Yang Mao Jian Green Tea——176 ºF (80 ºC)—— 1 to 2 minutes
Jasmine “Dragon Pearls” Green Tea——176 ºF (80 ºC)—— 1 to 2 minutes
Silver Jasmine Green Tea (Mo Li Yin Hao) --194 ºF (90 ºC) --1 to 2 minutes
Chun Mei Green Tea (Zhen Mei) --194 ºF (90 ºC) --less than 30 seconds
Gunpowder Green Tea (Zhu Cha) --203 ºF (95 ºC) --1 to 2 minutes
Bi Luo Chun Green Tea (Pi Lo Chun) --176 ºF (80 ºC)—— 1 minutes

Tai Ping Hou Kui Green Tea, Huang Shan Mao Feng Green Tea, and Liu An Gua Pian Green Tea all need to steep in 176 ºF (80 ºC) for 1 to 2 minutes. More steeping time means stronger flavor and taste.

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