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Tuesday, 5 February 2013

tea plantation boh bharat


just look at the human figure compared to the vast areas of the tea plantations

tea - green the earth

those cottages look so heavenly in the midst of the green carpet of tea tree.

Cameron Highlands is the largest tea-growing region in Malaysia - home to vast plantations of this valuable crop that carpet the valleys in a lush sea of bright green. Tea was also one of the precursors to its development as a hill station, before its transformation into a major tourist destination. Today, the many tea plantations that dominate the valley are instrumental in drawing the multitudes of visitors Cameron Highlands receives each year. The various estates are mostly owned by Boh, the larger group established since 1929 by colonial owners; and Bharat, a slightly more recent local company that only began full-scale operations in the 1950s.

The tea plant (Camellia sinensis) is actually a tree, rather than a bush as popularly regarded by most people. If left to grow in the wild, tea can grow up to 16m in height. The current method of pruning tea plants leaves them at a manageable size for ground-level harvest, while allowing for higher yield through a more compact arrangement of bushes. The same plant is used to produce different types of tea; each undergo a different oxidation process and blend that result in their unique flavours, aroma and colour. In Cameron Highlands, black tea is the most popular variety of tea produced, followed by Oolong and green tea. The dark tint of tea is the result of its chemical compunds, chiefly being tannin leached into the water by heating.

Next to water, tea is the most popular drink in the world, beating even coffee and beer. While tea produced from Cameron Highlands is not strictly exceptional, they make extremely popular products and souvenirs by value of novelty, especially when bought while visiting shops at tea plantations or neighbouring towns. Boh has the largest tea estates, covering a total 3238 hectares, with plantations and factories open to visitors at Habu in Ringlet and Sungai Palas in Brinchang. Bharat has smaller tea fields (total 810 hectares) but more strategic positions along the main road, specifically just before Tanah Rata town and between Tringkap and Kampung Raja, allowing them to capture visitors despite inferior tourist facilities. Much smaller tea plantations can be found in Kuala Terla and Blue Valley, but some of them have been abandoned.

just in case you thought i knew so much about tea, i actually don't. i simply cheated by bringing the information directly to you from the
however, the photos were taken by my canon 550D using programme with manual focus setting.

Monday, 4 February 2013

the melayu's chuncky strawberry jam.

a friend pesan...

if i were to buy a strawberry jam from cameron highlands, purchase the ones with lots of fruits in the jam. i take it to mean - a chunky jam. we looked everywhere in the supermarkets and roadside stalls even tea shops, but alas! could not find any.

then i learned about the cottage industries by the malay villagers who went into strawberry planting and processing them into cordial, jam, toppings and shakes.

i you drive a car, coming down from brinchang, just before reaching tanah rata, you will see on the left side, a sprawl of golf course and just towards the end there is a turn off to the place called kampung sedia.

there are  3 operators that carry different names but the jam i wanted carry the label KM Jam.

strawberries planted in a pot

strawberries planted in plastic bags

awh! sweet and juicy strawberries

look at the prices in the menus. they are so affordable

food glorious food! we had mee kari & bihun sup, strawberry yogurt and shakes

eating in the farm, the strawberries tasted and smelled heaven!

each farmer has a little shop that displays and sells their products complete with a cafe. what we did was to buy cordial and strawberry fruits from one operators, jams and toppings from the other while we had our lunch, yogurt and shakes in a bistro on a strawberries farm.

wanita comel even put on her strawberry coloured dress - it's like a honeymoon for me all over again. how beautiful could that be!