Drinking lots of green tea could help digestion due to its high levels of antioxidants. PICTURE: Supplied
Drinking lots of green tea could help digestion due to its high levels of antioxidants. PICTURE: Supplied
Different teas need different steeping methods to extract the optimal flavour. Picture: Washington Post
Different teas need different steeping methods to extract the optimal flavour. Picture: Washington Post

It is a truth universally acknowledged that the Brits know a thing or two about tea. In fact, they drink more than 165 million cups of the stuff in a day. 
But, how do you make yours?

According to Dr Stuart Farrimond, an expert in the science of making tea (yes, that’s a real job), we've been brewing our morning cuppa all wrong.

In a new series of the BBC television show, Inside the Factory, Dr Farrimond shares the secret to making the perfect cup of tea during a visit to a teabag factory. 
Firstly, you have to brew it for precisely five minutes for the tea to reach its full taste potential, he advised.

Not only will this ensure the tea is fully caffeinated, apparently it also boosts its health properties too, as it will naturally release more antioxidants in this time.

Another pearl of wisdom: never drink from a Styrofoam cup. “It absorbs the flavour molecules, reducing the tastiness of the tea”, he says.

Different teas need different steeping methods to extract the optimal flavour. Picture: Washington Post

If you live in an area with hard water, Farrimond also suggested using a filter to remove the calcium and magnesium residue which should prevent scum from forming on the top of your tea.

“What's happening is some of the flavour compounds are reacting with the calcium and they form this scummy layer, so you're actually losing flavour, the flavour is being lost in that scum,” he said.

Fascinatingly, Dr Farrimond also claimed that the colour of the mug you drink from can affect how your tea tastes. If you have a sweet tooth, opt for red or pink as these colours will accentuate the tea’s natural sweetness whilst white or blue mugs can bring out the saltiness of your tea bag. Red mugs at the ready.

When it comes to the whole milk first/water first debate however, our tea wizard left us in the dark, failing to address this highly controversial and hotly-debated issue, possibly at the risk of being trolled. Fair enough Farrimond

The Independent