While many people in abroad know well about Matcha, some people don't know about other kinds of teas. So let me introduce the most popular and typical tea in Japan: Sencha. It's also a sort of Green Tea, rather easy to buy and take one. A convenience store, for example, we can find a variety of them put in plastic bottles. However, what if we want to make it from tea leaves? Here's how :D
(Note: there are many types of Sencha in Japan, and this is my own way to make it for two people :)
The boiled water: 450ml (150ml for a time)
Tea leaves: 5g
A pot: Whatever you have :)
Let's begin with discovering a fine tea. In my case, I usually go to a small tea shop near my house, or a basement of department stores. When I choose it from many of them, I always remember one thing from my friend working at a tea company: Find 100g of tea at 1,000yen (Around US$9). It's so well-balanced both price and the quality of tea. If you make a tea everyday, you may finish it within a month. That's what's 100g of green tea like. Of course, you can't save tea leaves for years. Once you open the package, it's better off finish it within a month, or the leaves lost their flavor gradually. Sometimes it takes about two months to drink them all, but it's not recommended. So, 100g is the best to take.
These are teapots. I assume you don't have it. But don't worry, you can make sencha with other utensils, such as the one for other tea or coffee. The way I make it without my special pot, I do it with my mug and strainer for red tea. I'll show you if you don't have it in this post :D
The tea pots for green tea usually have a filter to separate leaves from hot water. It means, if you have a pot-like thing and a filter, you can do it anyway ;)
The way of choosing a cup is my forever journey. Thin or thick, rounded, colored, earthenware or china.... That's something we can't find the answer!
Well, it's time for tea time :) Just grab your teaspoon and take leaves twice: 2 tsp for one or two cups of tea. I wanted you to measure 4g-5g, and if you happen to have a weighing equipment, then scale with it :)
Pour 150ml of boiled water to your pot and cups in order to warm them in advance. It helps make tea more tasty and have the water cool down a bit. Ordinarily speaking, boiled water decrease 10 degrees Celcius every time you put it to other pots or cups. For instance, I put it in the pot and two cups. It means the boiled water decreased by 30 degrees to 70 degrees. For many teas, the ideal temperature of the water is 60-70 degrees. Thus, by cooling it down in advance, you can make the best tea :D When the water looks the best temperature, place the leaves in your pot, and take the hot water you just prepared, then wait for a minute or two.
Like red tea and coffee, pour the tea into the cups bit by bit so that they stay the same density. Once you finish pouring it, it's time to enjoy! ;)
So, you can take another hot waters to make tea again up to 3 times. If you want to do it, I recommend to take it with hotter water. Let's say I started with making tea with 60 degrees for my first time. In that case, I would pour 70 degree for the second time, 80 degrees for the third time. This helps leaves make another good teas even for three times. (I frequently do it for 5 times by the way. Well, that still works!)
For people don't have a pot for Green Tea, I recommend using French Press or Strainer. Since a container and a strainer are the key to making good Green Tea, it doesn't have to be the special one. So let's do it with my French Press Boddum, initially for coffee.
It works :) And sure, you also can do it with your own utensil :D
You might have a question about leftover. I sometimes eat the leaves after making tea. Although it's not so tasty with low quality leaves, good ones taste like seaweed and sweet. I like taking it with flavored vinegar or soy sauce.
So, this is how to make a good tea in your home. If it makes you imagine the process before doing for your first time, that's my pleasure ;)