One thing should be always remembered: all teas are made of the same plant – Camellia sinensis, or, to be more specific – of its two subspecies – Camellia sinensis var. sinensis and Camellia sinensis var. assamica.
The difference is in the details of the processing.
The Green Tea is a tea leaf that did not undergo oxidation process.
During Green tea production, tea enzymes – peroxidase and polyphenol oxidase are destroyed via steam treatment or roasting (this process sometimes referred to as “kill green” or Shaqing in Chinese, when tea leaf is heated up to 65 Deg C), performed immediately after withering, and before the rolling starts.
It is worth mentioning that ‘kill green’ process in Japan is performed by steaming and in China – by pan frying or roasting. And this explains why Japanese teas are more vivid and brighter green than Chinese pale green tea leaves. In pan frying or roasting method the tea leaf reaches the needed temperature of 65 Deg C gradually, so some uncontrolled oxidation occurs; while steaming allows to heat up the leaf to the required temperature almost simultaneously, so uncontrolled oxidation doesn’t take place.
Processing the tea leaves in this way preserves all the polyphenols, amino acids, pigments, minerals, and vitamins unaltered, making the green the heathiest choice for tea lovers.
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