My friends, Tom and Mary Connor got me hooked on Barry’s tea. I’ve always been more of a coffee drinker but it can be too harsh on the stomach to drink in the late afternoon or evening so it’s typically a morning habit for me. I have often looked forward to a cup of tea from Mary’s kitchen when I would have the craic with them into the wee hours of the morning. An afternoon cup of tea has recently become a bit of a home ritual – I’ve found both the drinking of the tea and the brewing to be quite relaxing after work. When it comes to brewing tea you can’t rush it; it’s ready when it’s ready so it sort of forces you to slow down and have a bit of mid-day peace.
When I first brewed my own tea at home I figured I’d better do some digging online and figure out how to make a “proper” cup that would come close to Mary’s experienced brew. Here are some of the highlights from the information I found online: Brew the tea by placing 1-2 bags into a teapot, pour in hot water from a whistling kettle and let it steep in the covered pot for five minutes or so (no dunking or stirring the bag). After five minutes I’ve read that it’s best to remove the tea bag from the pot to avoid a bitter taste from developing but you can squeeze the bag against the edges of the pot before removing it depending on how strong you want your tea. Give it a stir and you’re ready to pour into a tea cup with milk and sugar to taste. Add a couple of Maria biscuits and you have yourself a soothing afternoon snack!