Muslin Tea Bags Good for Straining?

Discussion on virtually any teaware related item.

Muslin Tea Bags Good for Straining?

Postby forkyfork » Sep 17th, '07, 20:22

I know people seem to be against teaballs here, since they don't provide enough room to grow. However, I have a muslin tea bag (http://www.dragonwater.com/product_deta ... bag_m.html) and I was wondering what you thought about that for straining? Will the tea leaves have enough room to expand?

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Postby ABx » Sep 17th, '07, 22:40

It's really going to depend on the tea you use, each tea will expand differently.

Before I started really getting into tea, I always thought the dislike of infusers that constrain the leaves were over-blown. It didn't take long to find out otherwise, however. The problem is that when the leaves are too constrained, the outside leaves steep completely while the ones in the middle hardly steep at all. Once the desirable aspects of the leaf are extracted, the leaf will start to give off bitter and astringent qualities. So the worst case scenario with anything that constrains the tea leaves is that you can end up with a weak and bitter brew that's not much like what it's supposed to be.

Infusers like these can be fine for tea that isn't whole leaf, herbals, and teas that don't need to unfurl. Many black teas come to mind, rooibos, many other herbals, yerba mate, and maybe some greens, yellows, and whites, but the truth is that even most of those are going to be best if they have plenty of room to move around. My best suggestion would be to experiment with what you have while keeping the above in mind.

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Postby Wesli » Sep 17th, '07, 22:54

I wouldn't use them. The reason is that they're cotton. After a bit of use they'll become "seasoned" and then release certain flavors of tea into anything you brew with them.
Then theres washing them, if you decide to deseason it by washing with soap (or bleach) then the tastes of the cleaners will come out in the tea. :(
If the leaves expand to any volume near filling the bag, then it definitely wont work.

Good luck!

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Postby Marky » Sep 18th, '07, 08:03

I use a bigger one of these to make pots of tea.

Image

Yes it does become seasoned but I don't think that's a bad thing. I use it for teas that don't taste too differently from each other and the seasoning has never bothered me. I just rinse it out with water after each pot. My wife has family in Denmark and this is how many people make tea there.

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