Tea isn’t just a refreshing beverage that is consumed worldwide, it is also has great importance to European, Middle Eastern and Asian Cultures. In this article, we take a look at some countries that have incorporated tea into their cultures.

United Kingdom

The people of the United Kingdom love their tea so much that the UK is the second highest consumer of tea worldwide per capita. However, it wasn’t always like this as the British are relative newcomers to tea drinking. Their love of all things tea can be traced back to the 19th century. During this period, India was still under the control of the British Empire and they had firm interests in the tea trade worldwide. The variant most popular in the United Kingdom is black tea that is almost always served with milk. 15 cups or more per day is quite common with consumption averaging around 5 cups daily. The tea break takes place in the early afternoons and is of particularly importance as it is observed throughout most of the UK. For all intents and purposes, a tea break is simply a light afternoon meal often accompanied by cake, scones and light sandwiches.

Egypt

Egypt is another country that’s crazy about tea. It is so popular that is the national beverage of choice, which is also known as “shai”. Almost all teas that are consumed in Egypt are imported from Sri Lanka or Kenya. Black tea is the variant that is consumed the most while green tea is widely unpopular among the populace. Because of its popularity, tea is consumed many times a day. It is almost compulsory during breakfast and after lunch. As is the case with certain Asian cultures, tea is the beverage of choice during social meetings and functions.

Malaysia

While coffee has slowly been gaining ground in Malaysia, tea is still a lot more popular among its citizens. The most popular form of tea is called “Teh Tarik”, which literally translates into “pulled tea”. It refers to the way black tea is mixed in with sweetened condensed milk there. The mixing process involves pouring in the mixture into another cup or container from elevated height. This process continues until the tea begins to froth. At that point, it is ready to serve. It should be noted that teh tarik is almost always served in food joints called a “mamak”. A “Mamak” is usually the term used for the hugely popular 24 hour eateries commonly found there. But it is also slang for Muslims of Indian descent in the country. Incidentally, 24 hour eateries in Malaysia are almost always operated by Indian Muslims which may have something to do with the terms used for these eateries. While the teas importance in the home setting has decreased over the years, it is still the drink of choice when meeting up at a Mamak for social gatherings. While black tea has traditionally been consumed here, other types have slowly been introduced with limited success.

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