If you’re a fellow tea drinker and lover, then you know that making the perfect brew is a SACRED ritual. Whether it’s the type of tea, or how long you leave the teabag in, we all love to argue about our personal tea-making routines – but there seems to be a new debate…
What goes first – hot water or milk? A study carried out by INTU Boiling Water Taps has shown that the key to the best brew is putting the milk in first. It’s alright, I don’t know how to feel about this blasphemy either…
Now, we all know there are some wrong, very wrong ways of making a cuppa, but Professor Alan Mackie has suggested that putting the milk in first can ‘generate a much better flavoured and healthy cup of tea’ – but this depends on where you live too.
If you live in a soft water area, then stick with your brewing routine, but if you live in a hard water area, then milk is apparently better. This isn’t exactly new though, as research also found that a quarter of Brits prefer to add the milk in first, and another quarter is undecided as to their preference.
Basically, as Professor Mackie explains, putting hard water in first results in the flavour and health compounds in your teabag combining with the water’s and precipitating out.
Hard water also has a high mineral content that prevents flavour compounds from forming well. And if you want to know the trick to the taste of your tea, it’s the tannins, but hard water makes them solid before they can properly develop.
But if you add the milk first, it binds the tannins and flavour compounds. The milk proteins lower the mineral content of the water, so they can lock in the flavour and prevents the precipitation process from occurring.