Turkish Tea

turkishtea1

Are you tired? Do you fill uncomfortably full? Do you have guests? Brew some Turkish tea! Turkish tea has such a great role in our life that even a day without tea is impossible for us.

We start our day not with coffee, absolutely with a glass of newly brewed tea which has a tempting and stimulating fragrance. Breakfast means tea for us. If there is no tea, it’s not a real breakfast for us as it lacks the main thing. You know a typical Turkish breakfast has mainly olives, cheese, cucumber, tomatoes, jam, eggs and as a drink we definitely have tea.If you don’t have time for breakfast at home, you can buy simit and have it with a glass of tea at work. Tea and simit are always perfect couple!

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We also have tea at various times in a day. A glass of newly brewed tea is the best solution if you are tired. People say that it removes your tiredness. That’s why people drink tea when they have a break while working. It’s a way of renewing yourself and it gives the energy you need to continue your work. If you are a student and you feel sleepy when studying, your mom brings a glass of tea with some cookies, which helps you continue studying.

When you have unexpected guests, you are absolutely supposed to serve them tea as there is always tea in the pantry and the teapot is always on the stove in a typical Turkish house.

So we can say that tea as a drink is much more common in Turkey than coke. When waiting for your package at a fish market, don’t be surprised if the salesperson offers you tea. It is a way of welcoming your customer, which is a part of our culture. Tea is also served at meetings (with colegues or friends).

There is also a seperate small kitchen like room at almost all workplaces and a person is charged there to brew tea and seerve it to the employees every now and then.

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As for its service , culturally we prefer drinking tea in a glass specially designed for Turkish tea. You see it above. Serving them in cups doesn’t have a very long history in our culture. It has become popular for some years, but tea glass is still the most-preferred. A few sugar cubes are put near the glass at coffee houses, while sugar is served in a separate cup at home. There are certainly people who love their tea without sugar. Some prefer strong tea some love weak tea. And those who love weak tea would rather have tiny lemon wedges with their tea.

Turkish tea is grown in Rize, a city in Black Sea region (North of Turkey) and it is said that this tea has the highest quality all around the world. There are endless tea fields in this city and tea makes the main source of economy there. And everyone in Turkey owes a lot to the women of this region as they do the most of the work here. Women are the ones who work in these fields picking tea leaves.

teafield

(Photo taken from here)

Tea is such a remarkable hot drink in our cuisine that even teaspoons have different functions. It is normally used to mix sugar cubes with the tea in your glass. however, it is a kind of giving a message in some local places. One glass of tea is never enough for us, we often want for the second or third or even more. In some small regions, when someone doesn’t want to have another glass of tea, he shows it with the tespoon. Can you guess how? By covering the top of the glass with the reverse side of a teaspoon. This means “Thank you! I don’t want any more.

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A real tea drinker hates tea bags as they don’t have the same flavor as the original ones. Tea bags are not brewed at all, they are just put in cups filled with hot water and it’s ready. I think tea bags are like prepackaged foods as tasteless as them. So if you want to enjoy your tea, you must absolutely brew it in a teapot.

Turk Cayi
How is it brewed?

teapot

There are two parts of a teapot put one above the other. The one at the bottom is bigger than the one on the top. Let me call them bottom pot and top pot. Boil some water in the top pot, when it boils, put some tea and pour some of the hot water in it. Then add some more water into the bottom pot if necessary. Put the top pot on it and put it on the stove back. Wait until the water boils, and lower the heat. Your tea in the top pot will be brewed in about 10 or 15 minutes with the help of the steam from the bottom pot. As you see there is no exact measurement for brewing tea, so I continually say ‘some’. However, giving aproximate measurements can be good so that you have an idea of it. You can fill the bottom top with water. You can put 2 tbsp tea leaves in the top pot for 2 people. And  transfer about a cup of boiled water into it. We take the inside holes of its pipe as measuring point and we fill it with boiled water up to these holes.

When it is brewed, you can serve it in glasses. There is also a certain way of doing this. Fill the quarter of the glass with brewed tea and then complete it with boiled water. If you want it weaker or stronger, change the amount of tea accordingly. And it is up to you to add sugar or not. Enjoy your tea!

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Updated on 03.27.2013: Here are my husband’s experimental tea photography! He asked me to add the following two photos in this post. He thinks these photos are better than the previous ones!

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Right after pouring black tea. It’s waiting for hot water to be completed!

Turkish Tea2

This is a good dark Turkish tea, just the way many Turkish people love!

Do you like these photos? Share your opinion in the comments section!

Turkish Tea

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: One pot

Turkish Tea2

Turkish black tea

Ingredients

  • 7 cups water
  • 5 tbsp black tea leaves

Instructions

  1. Boil 5 cups of water in a bottom teapot.
  2. Transfer about 2 cups into the top pot.
  3. Add in black tea leaves into the top pot.
  4. Pour extra 2 cups into the bottom pot and put the top pot over it.
  5. Let it boil over medium low heat.
  6. Wait it over the lowest heat until the tea leaves in the top pot sink.
  7. It's ready in about 10 min.
  8. When serving, pour 1/4 of a glass with tea and fill the rest with hot water.
  9. It's optional to add sugar into your cup before drinking.
http://www.giverecipe.com/turkish-tea.html

Comments

  1. says

    Zerrin, bayıldım bu yazına ve fotoğraflarına. Çok ama çok güzel anlatmışsın çay içme adetlerimizi…
    Sevgiler…

  2. says

    Excellent post Zerrin! I’m more tea but with French breakfast.

    I’m not accustomed to glasses, more in cups.

    So nice the teapot!

    All the best,

    Gera

  3. says

    I truly enjoyed this post and the lovely photos! I’m not a big tea drinker, but on occasion I really enjoy it. You’ve inspired me!

  4. says

    I very much liked this post- It is a very nice description of the Turkish tea culture . Covering the top of the glass with the reverse side of a teaspoon meaning “Thank you! I don’t want any more.” is absolutely unique ti the Turkish symbol!!

    Thanks!

  5. says

    This was such a lovely post! I walked away knowing so much more about the importance tea plays in the Turkish culture. I want to brew myself a cup right now! Thank you for sharing!

  6. says

    that is such a great post especially for someone like me who haven’t been to Turkey or tried Turkish tea. thanks for posting! :)

  7. says

    Turkish Tea sounds really amazing! I love this interesting and informative info! What a refreshing post :)

  8. says

    Wonderful tribute to tea! When I make an Arabic breakfast (very similar to your Turkish breakfast), we definitely have it with tea, served just like yours. I also like it with fresh mint leaves mashed into it – do you have it that way in Turkey?

  9. says

    i love tea.. and Turkish tea s best , and i m lover , drink 5-6 glasses in a day;)
    and simit is perfect accompony;)

  10. says

    i definitely need to start being a tea person. I know it has plenty of calming effects, and I definitely need those after these stressful workdays!

  11. says

    I love drinking tea, but not sure if I had Turkish tea, I must find some to try for sure. If I do, I will definitely have to have it in a glass!

  12. says

    Before I was hooked on coffee, tea was my warm drink of course. I still drink tea, and it’s very soothing when you are not well.

  13. sezin says

    What a nice entry! Made me realize how much I missed simit.
    I prefer tea over any other drink. My fave tea is Turkish black tea, as it is traditionally served. Living in the US for about a year, I was struggling finding Turkish tea. Well, someone suggested me tulumba.com. They have every little thing from Turkey and they make me feel “home”. Finally, enjoying my “demli” tea! :))

    • says

      Completely agree! Turkish black tea definitely removes your stress and tiredness.It’s great that you find your way to feel “home”. Wish you have a nice week with a lot of cups of demli tea:)

  14. Ieva says

    I dont know, how its possible -but from these 2 last added photos i can even taste the tea. Perfect photos!!!!! And perfect post!!!

    • says

      Thank you leva for these nice words! I’ll tell these to my husband! He’s the one behind these last 2 photos!

  15. says

    Cay, glorious cay!!! :) amazing, wonderful photos Zerrin, it is more than a drink for us, isn’t it, and certainly takes the tiredness out : ) eline saglik, bayildim : ) x Ozlem

    • says

      Thank you Ozlem! Photos are shot by my husband Yusuf. Tea is definitely the best drink to start and end your day!

Trackbacks

  1. [...] to a coffee house last weekend to have tea and simit as breakfast. When I was taking pictures of Turkish tea (you can see it in my last post), he called the waiter and gave another order, which made the [...]

  2. [...] Another thing they say is that cornbread contains cornmeal, water and salt; no any additional ingredients and no other kind of flour. This bread doesn’t have a soft texture, it is a bit crispy and not melting in your mouth. Traditionally, people have it with yogurt, soup or butter. They take small pieces from this bread, toss into soup or yogurt and dig into these. Or they spread butter on it when it is still hot and have it at breakfast with a glass of Turkish tea. [...]

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