Hojicha, genmaicha, bancha, and konacha are among the easiest to brew Japanese green teas. They yield their best flavor when steeped for a couple of minutes with near boiling temperature water.
Hojicha: Roasty, nutty flavor. If you are not partial to vegetal taste which most green teas have, this tea is for you.
Genmaicha: Fresh, popcorny flavor and very low caffeine, making in suitable for all ages.
Bancha: Everyday green tea and a good choice as accompaniment for diets. Also comes in aged variety (san-nen-bancha.)
Konacha: Typical tea served at sushi restaurants. Goes well with almost any meal.
How to Brew
- Add one teaspoon of tea leaves per cup.
- Add near-boiling water to the teapot.
- Brew for 1-2 minutes and serve.
Japanese believe that a the last drop of tea in a teapot is the most delicious. Pour small amounts of tea into each cup at a time, and go around until you serve the very last drop.
You can add hot water again to the teapot for a second, or even a third brewing.
Tips for Brewing a Better Green Tea
DO NOT stir, shake or mix the tea while brewing.
To get the best flavor out of your tea. use fresh, good quality water (but not distilled.) If your water tastes bad, then so probably will your tea, regardless of its quality! For tap water, let it run cold for at least 10 seconds before using.
Japanese green teas (and indeed all teas,) should be brewed in kettles made from a material that is as non-reactive as possible, since the kettle material can chemically react with water and cause contamination.
Avoid aluminum kettles. Aluminum is a reactive material which has been proven to cause toxic contamination. Glass, ceramic, stainless steel, enamel, marble, or cast iron are excellent non-reactive, non-toxic materials.