Pu-erh tea is a fermented version of pu-erh. This tea has been around for hundreds of years and comes from the Yunnan region of China. Because it’s fermented, it has entirely different properties than other teas.
Pu-erh tea has many benefits, but how can you brew it at home? It’s not something that you can throw in a tea bag or a standard cup of hot water. You have to follow special instructions to make this unique type of tea.
Keep reading to learn more about how to brew pu-erh tea and the health benefits you stand to gain from drinking it regularly.
What is Pu-erh Tea?
The pu-erh tea plant (known as a Camellia sinensis variety) grows in Yunnan, China. The tea leaves are harvested, processed, fermented, and aged.
Pu-erh tea is a variety of fermented tea. It’s a little different than other fermented teas like kombucha or beer because pu-erh is aged. That means it’s been sitting around for a long time. Centuries. Pu-erh tea has been around for hundreds of years.
How to Brew Pu-erh Tea
Pu-erh tea is made differently from green, black, or white teas. Pu-erh tea should be brewed at a lower temperature than most teas and for longer.
To brew pu-erh, you need:
- Pu-erh tea leaves
- A teapot or gaiwan
- Hot water
- A timer
- A filter
Place the pu-erh tea leaves in your gaiwan or teapot. Using a gaiwan, you can put the leaves in the bowl or put them on a small plate if you have one. If using a teapot, you can use leaves inside of a filter. If you want to get fancy, you can use a tea coffeemaker brewing vessel.
Add hot water to your gaiwan or teapot filled with pu-erh tea leaves. The ideal water temperature for steeping pu-erh tea is around 90 °C or 195 °F. It is ten °C lower than the water temperature for black tea and 15 °C lower than green tea.
Let the pu-erh tea steep for 5-10 minutes.
Steeping pu-erh can take a little longer than other teas. Use a timer to make sure you don’t overdo it.
Strain the tea leaves out of the water using a tea strainer. Pu-erh leaves can be large, so make sure you have a tea strainer that can handle the size of the leaves.
Health Benefits of Pu-erh Tea
There are many health benefits to drinking pu-erh tea. Pu-erh tea is good for your digestive and cardiovascular systems. It can also help with weight loss. Pu-erh tea is high in antioxidants and minerals essential for a healthy body. Pu-erh has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help with arthritis and joint pain.
How to Tell Good Pu-erh from Bad
Before you purchase a pu-erh tea bag or loose tea, you need to know how to spot good pu-erh from bad pu-erh. There are a few signs that pu-erh is past its prime and should be avoided:
- Dusty leaves
- A musty smell
- Bad taste
Pu-erh tea is an excellent drink for the health and enjoyment of food. It has a unique flavor that can be paired with many different types of food. Pu-erh is a superb option for people who don’t like the taste of black tea or coffee. It’s also a great way to start drinking tea if you never have before.
Pu-erh tea is best brewed in a teapot or gaiwan with water around 90 °C or 195 °F.
You can tell good pu-erh from bad by looking for signs past its prime, like discoloration and a musty smell.
Pu-erh is a good option for everyone except pregnant women and people with high blood pressure.