White tea is fast becoming a very popular drink in the Western world. Once consumed only in China and Japan, and only for the most elegant of occasions, white tea is now being consumed as an everyday beverage for people all over the world.
White tea is special because of its very light and delicate flavor and fragrance. Itís far milder and less astringent than black teas, and lacks the grassy flavor of many green teas. In addition, white tea has all the health benefits of green tea, and possibly even more benefits.
Like black and green tea, white tea comes from the camellia sinensis plant. But, white teas are harvested much earlier than other teas, before the leaves are fully open and while they retain fine white hair on the buds.
White tea is also processed differently than black and green teas, in that it receives the virtually no processing. The leaves are simply dried and steamed. The steaming prevents the leaves from oxidizing, protecting the delicate flavor and helping the tea leaves retain their natural anti-oxidants.
These potent anti-oxidants have been shown to slow down the aging process and prevent serious illnesses like cancer and heart disease.
The catechins in green and white tea have been shown to help speed up the metabolism and oxidize fat, promoting weight loss. In addition, white tea in particular seems to improve the immune system, helping your body fight off bacteria and viruses. Like other teas, white tea is high in fluoride, so it helps keep your teeth healthy, too.
One of the finest white teas available is a blend called white Persian melon tea. This tea blends the finest white tea with melon nectar for a refreshing and fruity taste. Not only does the addition of melon enhance the flavor of the white tea, but it enhances the health benefits, too. Melons are also a potent source of anti-oxidants.
Melons contain lycopene, vitamins A and C, beta carotene, and potassium. They also contain an anti-oxidant called GliSODdin, which has the power to eradicate some of the most destructive free radicals in the body.
In addition, GliSODin stimulates our bodies to produce its own anti-oxidants, and has been clinically proven to help maintain cellular health and protect against oxidative damage in several studies. These anti-oxidants produced by our bodies are far more powerful at neutralizing free radicals than the anti-oxidants we consume through diet.
So, now that Iíve convinced you that white Persian melon tea is a beverage you simply must add to your diet, youíre probably wondering the best way to drink it.
First, itís important to begin with high quality loose tea. White tea is the rarest of all teas, which also means that itís the most expensive. However, even the finest white tea is affordable, costing less per cup than most sodas and gourmet coffees. Choose your tea from a reputable tea purveyor to ensure that youíre getting only the best tea. White tea is less compact than other loose teas, so you will need more per cup than with many other loose teas.
Next, itís important to use fresh cold water anytime you brew tea. Put the water in a clean tea kettle and bring it to a boil on the stove. Put hot tap water in your teapot to warm it up while the water is heating. Once the water boils, remove the tap water from your pot and add your tea leaves. Use about 2 teaspoons per cup for white Persian melon tea. Let the water sit for a minute or two before pouring it over the tea leaves. This assures you that the water has cooled to between 170-185∞ F, the perfect temperature for brewing white teas.
Steep your white Persian melon tea for about 5-8 minutes, depending on your tastes. The tea will be pale with a golden color. Expect a sweet and fruity flavor with just a hint of smokiness. You should be able to get at least two infusions from high quality white Persian melon tea.
On those warm summer days, youíll find no better tea blends for iced tea than white Persian melon. The melon flavor, somewhere between the taste of honeydew and the taste of cantaloupe, is very reminiscent of summer and very refreshing. To make iced tea, simply brew several servings of tea at once and allow to cool.
Since white tea is so delicate in flavor, itís not wise to make white tea and then pour it over ice while hot. Doing so may dilute the flavor of the tea to a point that it tastes too weak. Instead, allow the pitcher of tea to cool before serving. This keeps the original flavor of the tea by not allowing the ice to dilute it too much.
You can also use your white Persian melon tea for cooking. In fact, one of the best ways to poach fish is in white tea rather than water. Make about 2 cups of white Persian melon tea. Add other seasonings, such as lemon, salt and pepper as desired to the tea.
Sear the fish fillets slightly in a pan on top of the stove. When seared, add the seasoned white tea and allow the fish to cook until done. Try salmon, sea bass or tilapia with this recipe for a mild and delicious fish dish.
Experiment and youíll likely find many other ways to use white Persian melon tea, both for drinking and for cooking. Youíll soon find out why this delicate white tea is one of the most highly prized in all the world.