On National Tea Day, we have one burning question to ask, how do you make the perfect cuppa?

This age-old debate has divided people for centuries.

Should you have it black or white?

If you like it with milk, how much do you use?

Should the milk go in first?

Do you serve it in a china cup or a big mug?

Sugar or no sugar?

The questions could go on and on, and don’t even get us started about flavoured tea!!!

Tea Tips

The answers do, of course, depend on your personal preference, but they are wrong if you don’t agree with me, so here my tips:

  1. Always use filtered water, especially if you live in hard water areas (you will know this if you get a film around the mug/cup)
  2. Use loose leaf teabags, you get more flavour
  3. Don’t make the tea in the cup, that’s what teapots were invented for
  4. As soon as the kettle starts boiling switch it off as you can overboil water which affects the tea
  5. Let the tea brew for at least 3 minutes, but 5 minutes is the minimum for me
  6. Drink it black (why spoil it with milk?)
  7. If you really need to use milk, use just a touch and add it after you have poured the tea into the mug/cup. Have a look at Yorkshire Tea’s fantastic colour chart and it needs to be ‘No! That’s Coffee’, rather than ‘Essentially Water’.
  8. Tea with sugar always tastes better

So, follow my ‘rules’ and you can’t go wrong. Now, this is a food, and not a drink, blog, so I can’t leave without providing this Asian-inspired (hey it’s SK, what did you expect?) tea based recipe for National Tea Day.

Chinese tea leaf eggs


• 8 eggs

• 2 teaspoons salt

• 3 cups water

• 1 tablespoon soy sauce

• 2 tablespoons of black tea leaves

• 1 cinnamon stick (around 2 inches)

• Star anise

  1. Combine the eggs and 1 teaspoon of salt in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat, drain, and cool. When cool, tap eggs with the back of a spoon to crack shells (but do not remove shells).
  2. In another saucepan, combine 3 cups water, soy sauce, black soy sauce, salt, tea leaves, star anise, cinnamon stick, and tangerine zest. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 3 hours. Remove from heat, add eggs, and let steep for at least 8 hours.

Coffee more your thing? Check out our Coffee Week blog

About Sean Flint
Development & Innovation Chef of SK Foods.
Your food. Our Passion.