Genmaicha tea simply means tea (cha being the Japanese word for tea) that is brewed with rice, toasted rice to be exact and Sencha green tea leaves. Being a girl of Indian origin it is not surprising that I am obsessed with tea. Japanese tea as with many teas need to be treated with care. A common mistake many people make is to brew tea with boiling water. That is fine if you are having a mug of builders with a generic blended black tea. For the majority of single estate teas and especially green, white and flowering teas boiling water will only scorch and result in a bitter tasting tea.
For Genmaicha I would recommend 80 – 90C pre boiling water. It is possible to steep this tea up to three times, simply add more water to the pot. This way you can enjoy the tea warm and still make some iced tea for later. With this particular tea my personal preference is to enjoy it cold. You could pour the tea after a mere 30 seconds. My recommendation is 2 minutes of steeping/brewing time.
Once you have brewed your tea you may choose to sweeten it. It is best to this whilst the tea is still warm so that the sugar dissolves. As this tea has such a delicate and unique flavour I use ordinary sugar only, no honey or brown sugar as this will overpower the flavour of the toasted rice. Enjoy your iced tea in this hot summer weather.