Green tea or “atay” as it is called in Morocco, comes in many different varieties. All are Chinese gun powder. The tea is said to be called gun powder because the tea leaves are dried and individually rolled pellets resembling gun powder. Depending on the variety, the strength of the tea leaves vary.
Drinking tea in Morocco is extremely common, playing an important part in its culture. It is quite unheard of to find a household that doesn’t engage in tea drinking. Many families drink several glasses of tea throughout the day. Whenever there are guests, it is mandatory to serve them tea and is looked upon as shameful if tea wasn’t served and likewise rude if the guest refuses.
The average Moroccan usually prefers the tea to be well sweetened rather than under sweetened. It all depends on individual taste and this varies from person to person and city to city.
The tea is served in tea glasses and not tea cups.
Although the tea is just as pleasurable plain, mint is added. However, nowadays with all of the pesticides used in the production of mint, there are many Moroccan people who omit the mint. So,when preparing the tea, add the mint directly in the tea glass or into the teapot.
The following is a way to make Moroccan mint tea.
Use a medium sized tea pot to fill between 6-10 glasses.
3 cups of water
1 tablespoon of green tea leaves
A handful of fresh and thoroughly washed mint leaves
Sugar to taste
Boil the water in a kettle.
In the teapot, add the tea and about 1 cup of the boiled water.
Rinse the tea leaves, gently shaking the tea pot from side to side.
Pour off the water.
Add the fresh mint to the teapot or if adding directly to the tea glass, do so now.
Add the remaining 2 cups of water and sugar to the teapot.
Place the teapot on low heat. When the tea starts to come to a boil, remove. Let the tea steep for about 5 minutes.
Pour a little in a tea glass and taste for sweetness. Add more sugar to the teapot if desired.
Pour the tea into the tea glasses.