Keep Calm and Drink Tea
Observed in the United Kingdom every year, National Tea Day takes place on 21st April to celebrate our love of this quintessential British drink. Apparently, our love of tea is so great that collectively we consume more than 60 billion cups a year, an untea-leavable amount of over 165 million cups a day!
How Was Tea Discovered?Steeped in brew-tea-ful history, this warming and comforting drink is first thought to have been discovered in China in 2737BC by Chinese emperor, Shen Nung, who sat down to rest under a tree, whilst a servant boiled him some water. The tree they were sitting under, a ‘camellia sinensis’ dropped some loose leaves into the boiling water. After having consumed his hot drink, Shen was so taken by the taste of the leaves that he directed the plant to be grown throughout the land.
Remaining the primary tea drinking country for centuries, tea only arrived in Britain in the early 17th century. Since then tea quickly became the UK’s favourite hot drink, and was made fashionable by Anna, the Seventh Duchess of Bedford, in 1840 as there was such a long time between lunch and dinner! We have to say we’re enjoying the renewed popularity of the afternoon tea.
Whilst most brews stem from the original species of plant, there are thousands of varieties of tea for you to choose from, including black, pu-erh, green and oolong! Yet good old fashioned black, or breakfast tea, tops the most purchased and consumed type of tea in the UK.1
Sorry, Milk First?The contentious topic of how to make the perfect cup of tea - should the milk be poured in first to avoid the cup from cracking, or last so that you can judge the amount you need?
Apparently habits differ by age, with older Brits more likely to add milk first, but in fact, research by Dr Stapley of Loughborough University confirms that putting the milk in before the hot tea is the correct way to brew it! It is said that the milk heats unevenly when added after the hot tea, so as a result, the milk can lose its flavour, and this can also cause the mystery skin that sometimes forms on the top!
Tea Loves Us Too!Living in a society that believes tea makes everything better, as well as offering a hug in a mug and making us more alert, this hot drink is also thought to be packed with health benefits including antioxidant properties from flavonoids which can reduce the risk of heart disease, theaflavins and thearubigins which help lower cholesterol, as well as contributing to better gut health, and lowering the risk of a stroke or cancer. A sweet cup of hot tea is long since believed to help one get over shock or trauma too!
Fancy A Cuppa?The kettle is the appliance needed to kick start the day, but did you know about their varying features which contribute to the making of the perfect brew? Some kettles offer Boil Dry Protection to protect the heating element, automatically turning itself off if the water level is too low.
Alongside this, many kettles now offer handy 360° swivel bases, as well as safety features such as non-slip feet and locking lids to minimise the chance of any injury in the kitchen! Combined with manufacturers now offering models with bigger water capacities, allowing you to make a brew for the entire family. From extra milky to strong builders, however it is you take your tea, we’ve got a kettle for that!
Celebrating National Tea DayWhy not take part in a bit of fun and let us know what the perfect cup of tea looks like to you? Head over to Facebook now to enter into our poll!
Take 10, settle in with your perfect brew and raise your bone china to National Tea Day. ☕
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