Tea World

Lesson 31

Tea Traditions in Morocco, Egypt, and Turkey

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These three countries have quite a few similarities with regards to their tea drinking habits, though also many unique differences. Egypt is one of the world’s largest importers of tea, and most people drink several cups of black tea every day. Usually strongly brewed black tea is served in small glasses and is heavily sweetened.

In Morocco mint tea is drunk throughout the day, though especially during and following meals, because of the mint’s naturally ability to aid in digestion. Preparing tea is a masculine role in Moroccan culture, and because of the high honour of this role is usually performed by the head of the household. A mix of mint, green tea leaves, and a generous serving of sugar, Touareg tea (also known as Maghrebi mint tea ) is the customary blend of Morocco. Poured from up high (from an almost standing height) into slim, delicate glasses, it is served three times to guests. This extravagant pouring gesture aerates the mint tea into the room and fills the space with its refreshing aroma. Each time the flavor varies slightly. There is a proverb -"The first glass is as gentle as life, the second is as strong as love, the third is as bitter as death." Refusing any one of these servings is considered the height of rudeness. 

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