Japanese Green "Popcorn" Tea
Brewing: 1-2 tsp per cup ~ 100°C ~ 5-7 mins
Country of Origin: Japan.
Region: Kagoshima Prefecture.
Manufacture Type: Non-fermented, traditional steamed, pan dried and polished.
Infusion: Light golden yellow liquor.
Cup Characteristics: Light and delicate liquor with toasty flavour, tending sweet.
Ingredients: Steamed green tea with toasted rice and decorative plain popped rice.
Caffeine Content: Low.
Antioxidant Level: High.
Legend has it that during the 1400's an important samurai warlord in Hakone on the Izu Peninsula of Honshu Island (the Izu Peninsula is near the Shizuoka area) was having tea in the morning discussing a battle strategy with his patrol leaders. A servant by the name of Genamai was serving hot tea to the group. Leaning over to give tea to the warlord, rice that he had surreptitiously taken for a morning snack fell out of his pocket into the steaming hot tea. Some popped upon hitting the hot tea. The warlord was incensed, jumped up brandishing his samurai sword and promptly cut off Genamai's head in one fell swoop. He then sat down to continue the meeting. Despite the fact that the tea had been tarnished he drank it anyway. The rice gave the tea a unique flavour, and he enjoyed it tremendously. In honour of poor Genamai, he pronounced that this rice and tea be served every morning and be called 'Genmaicha' (cha being the name of 'tea' in Japanese).
Milk not recommended. Add sugar to taste.
Iced & Cold Brewing
- Make as for hot, but add extra tea - a rule of thumb is to double the amount used. When the tea has cooled a little, pour over ice. It is important to make it a little stronger as the ice will water it down.
- Alternatively, you can cold brew the tea by placing the tea in a jug and adding cold water. Leave to infuse for a few hours (or overnight in the fridge) strain and enjoy. Cold brewing will give a smoother taste.