The process and practice of making a traditional pot of Moroccan Mint Tea is truly a site to see. The three ingredients are Chinese gunpowder green tea, spearmint and sugar. If you have ever been to Morocco or read about it you know that Tea is a staple there. Anytime you are welcomed into someones home or rug shop you are asked if you would like some tea, but in Morocco it’s called Atay or even Berber whiskey and trust me you will drink lots of it while in Morocco. I think Moroccan Mint tea runs through my veins when I am traveling there!
However, if traveling to Morocco is not in the books right now and you are looking for Moroccan tea bags here in the States the brand I think has good flavor is Numi Organi Moroccan Mint Tea. However, I feel tea bags don’t quit give the same flavor as brewing I guess I am addicted to the loose tea, so if you can grab loose tea and add some fresh spearmint it really makes it even better! Also, don’t be surprised if you are in Morocco or looking at Traditional recipes where there are large quantity of sugar used. I’m sure you are thinking wait are you crazy using all that sugar?? It can be shocking, but it’s normal in Morocco, depending on the region sugar amounts and sweetness of the tea vary, so if tons of sugar is not your thing feel free to swapped with a good quality honey or sugar substitute.
Let’s make some tea!
One of the most essential steps in making Moroccan Mint Tea is steeping the first cup and reserving it for later use. This first steep is referred to as the “soul” of the tea, as it is said to contain the essence of what the leaves carry. The second steep is discarded, as this step is supposed to wash the tea of impurities.
Serves 3 to 4
- 5-6 fresh mint sprigs cut in half so they can fit in the teapot and more for garnish
- 2 heaped teaspoon loose gunpowder tea and dried spearmint mix if you are using our blend
- 2 cups boiling water
- 4-5 teaspoons of sugar or for substitute 2- 3 tbsp honey (optional: more to taste)
Special Tools: Small mesh strainer or tea pot with strainer built in
• For Traditional Moroccan Mint Tea you would us a Moroccan teapot. However for this recipe a stove top kettle or glass tea pot will work.
• In a clean tea pot, pour the gunpowder tea and half a cup of the boiled water. Let the tea simmer for a minute and pour out the water in a separate cup.
• Strain the water and keep the tea leaves inside the pot. Set this cup aside as it contains the essence of the tea. Reserve this cup of steeped tea for later.
• Repeat the same process. Pour half a cup of the boiled water in the same teapot but this time, swirl the teapot a couple of times to rinse to the tea leaves. If using a stove top kettle, strain the water to keep the tea leaves inside the pot. Discard this second cup of steeped tea.
• Now, add the fresh mint, sugar and the first cup of steeped tea you set aside earlier. Fill the teapot with the remaining boiled water and let gently simmer over medium-low heat until it comes to a boil. It’s important to let the tea slowly come to a boil to enable the gunpowder tea and fresh mint to steep properly.
• When it comes to a boil, carefully open the teapot and with a large spoon, stir or if you would like to add a touch of the traditional way you can take the glass of tea and pour back into the tea pot a few times. This will make sure that the sugar is well dissolved. Trust me these extra steps are well worth it!
• Serve hot. if using a stove top teapot, strain the tea to keep the tea leaves inside the pot when pouring into each glass.
• Place some fresh spearmint in each tea cup/glass for extra mint flavor or to garnish. (optional).
• Moroccan mint tea is traditionally very sweet but feel free to adjust the quantity of sugar to your taste or you can use honey or sugar substitute.
• Don’t forget to use a small sifter when pouring the tea if using a tea pot without one to retain the gunpowder/spearmint tea leaves.
• Want to try something different to flavor your Moroccan tea add any other aromatic herb such as lavender, sage or verbena.
• You can find loose gunpowder tea and spearmint in most Middle Eastern grocery shops or Herbal shops.
BsaHa -May God give you health