Thursday, June 9, 2016

Tea For Five

     By now all of my readers know that I am an absolute tea fanatic.  I’ve talked about hot tea, sweet tea, flavored tea, and even made some tea cupcakes.  One thing I’ve never mentioned though is how to boil water for tea.  You might be asking “Does it really matter?” and the answer is yes! 

     Did you know that your tea will taste different depending on whether you use tap water, filtered water, or bottled water?  It will also taste different whether you heat it in a microwave, on the stovetop, in a glass container, or in a metal container.  All of these things actually affect the flavor of your tea.  So, how do you choose?  Well, we each need to make our own decisions based upon our priorities and needs.

     My tea is made from tap water that is heated in a stainless steel tea kettle on the stovetop.  Why?  Because that’s what works for me.  Fortunately, I am happy with my tap water.  The town where I live puts out annual water quality reports and I just received mine last month.  I have friends with private wells who’s water reports aren’t as good as my city water.  I’m blessed that way.  So, you are going to have to choose your water based on your personal research and choices. 

     So, why do I use the stovetop instead of the microwave?  It certainly takes longer.  I think it’s worth it.  The water just tastes better heated on the stove.  If you don’t believe me, try an experiment for yourself.  Heat some water on the stove and heat some water in the microwave and do a side by side taste test.  There really is a difference!

     The real trick is finding just the right tea kettle for you.  I have a glass top stove, and find that copper bottom cookware works extremely well for my stove.  I also prefer the way my tea tastes when the water is boiled in stainless steel.  This isn’t a deal breaker, but if we are making our dream list, why not list everything just the way we want it, right?  And I want a big tea kettle.  I drink lots of tea and my family likes to share it, too, so I want a kettle that holds a lot of water.  And finally, a whistling tea kettle is awesome.  It might sound like a frivolous and “cute” feature, but in reality it’s very practical.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve left a pot of water on the stove to boil and then forgotten it until I hear it boiling over.  Sigh.  I hate cleaning up that mess.

     So, where do I find this dream tea kettle?  It turns out that SKIVU sells a whistling tea kettle that is 3.17 Qt.  That’s even big enough for me to boil water for my pitchers of sweet tea!  It’s made of stainless steel, and it has a copper bottom.  Wow.  That’s everything I was looking for.  Plus, it has an ergonomic handle that makes pouring very easy.  I’ve found my tea kettle.  It’s available here: Chef's Secret Tea Kettle.

     I’ve told you before that southern girls take our tea very seriously.  That goes for the kettle, too.  So, tell me… How does your tea pantry look?

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