Saturday, October 6, 2012

Decaffeinate Your Own Tea

Sometimes we want a cuppa when it's late at night but don't want to be kept awake by the caffeine. Our favorite loose teas contain caffeine, but there are some easy ways to decaffeinate your own tea without sacrificing flavor and quality. It's not possible to remove 100% of the caffeine, but you can get nearly all of it out and since a cup of tea contains much less than a cup of coffee, we think you'll still have no problem sleeping.

Here's a simple way to decaffeinate loose tea:
1. Boil water for your tea — twice the amount that you'd normally use
2. Put your tea leaves in the cup or teapot and pour enough hot water over them to cover the leaves
3. Steep the tea for 30-45 seconds, making sure all the leaves are saturated. 80% of the water soluble caffeine in tea is released in the first 30 seconds of brewing.
3. Pour off that water using a strainer to catch the tea leaves
4. Put the leaves back in the cup/pot and steep with fresh water as normal. You may want to add a little time to ensure the tea is at your favored strength. It should still taste perfect!

This trick also applies to bagged teas — just steep the bag in hot water for 30 seconds before pouring it out and adding fresh water. You can also share a tea bag with a friend, brewing your cup first and then giving it to the person who does not want caffeine. There's plenty of flavor to go around.

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