How’s that for a title!
And I’ll bet you’re wondering what in the world it has to do with gardening.
As close as it comes to gardening is that I enjoy my tea as much as I enjoy gardening. But in spite of that, this story is just too good not to tell.
The Tea Kettle and Infuser Story
I’m a tea drinker. And although I still love the smell of coffee, I don’t enjoy the taste.
For as far back as I can remember I boiled water for tea in one of my stainless steel sauce pans.
But in planning an event to take place in our home/business numerous years ago, I ordered an inexpensive stainless steel tea kettle from Amazon (like this one) thinking it would make a better appearance.
I never really enjoyed it, but used it for years. In spite of cleaning it far too often, it never looked clean. The supposed stainless steel seem to “peel” off around the hole where water was poured in.
Ordering a New Kettle
Some time back I decided it was time for new tea kettle. I wanted something that was a good quality BUT I didn’t want to pay an arm and leg for it. (Sometimes that’s a hard bill to fill.)
After a lot of looking and reading reviews I decided on The Genie. It’s a small kettle made from quality steel. Just the right size for me and a couple of guests should I have them. (Holds about 4 cups.)
Did I Make a Mistake?
After it arrived and I saw how delicate looking it was, I thought maybe I had made a mistake. So, as I sometimes do, I left it in the box to ponder the question and kept boiling my water for tea in a stainless steel saucepan.
(My habit of leaving new purchases in their box for a while – drove Bill crazy. He was like a kid at Christmas the minute something arrived and could hardly wait to get it out of the box and use it.)
After a month, I decided using the tea kettle would definitely be the best way to see if I had made a mistake.
I LOVE IT!
My stove (range) is a smooth surface. But the kettle can be used with all heat sources.
After an initial wash and rinse I filled the kettle no more than 3/4 full (about 4 cups of water) as instructed and placed it on my smallest burner with the kettle slightly off center so the handle would not be directly over the heated burner.
It won’t really hurt the handle to be over the burner, but it gets hotter that way. And you’d definitely need an oven mitt to pick it up. I find that if I place it off center I don’t need a mitt and can pick up the kettle by the handle without concern. BUT I never just grab it without a little touch test first for the sake of safety.
The Part I Love the Most
This teakettle makes me feel good when I use it. And I’d be proud to pour a cup of tea for the most select of guests using The Genie.
But the thing I love the most and that changed the way I bought and brewed tea was the part I thought I’d never use: the tea infuser.
As most of us know, buying loose tea in bulk is the most economical way to purchase tea. The savings are great.
The problem comes with being able to brew it and get all the tea leaf sediment out of the liquid when you pour your cup of tea.
Over the years I’ve tried a lot of tea infusers. None of them kept all the tea leaves inside the infuser. Tea leaf sediment always ended up in my cup of tea. I don’t know about you, but to me it’s pretty creepy to be drinking tea and get sediment along with your sip of tea.
So I always end up buying tea bags and not being able to take advantage of the savings AND the better taste of bulk tea.
This Tea Infuser Works!!
I had taken the infuser out of The Genie right away and set it aside.
Quite by accident and much to my delight, I found that it fit perfectly in my daily mugs.
(You can leave the infuser in the pot, steep the tea, and then pour. But I don’t want to have to clean tea stains from my kettle.) (You can also use this for “pour over” coffee.)
- Here’s what I do:
Place the infuser in my cup (mug).
Add 1 tsp of my preferred lose tea.
Pour in boiling water from my Genie teakettle.
Steep for 3 to 5 minutes depending on what variety I’m brewing.
Remove the basket (infuser). (I use a skewer to gently help lift it out.)
My tea is perfect and totally free of leaf residue!
Loose Tea Tastes Better?
I’ve found that the organic loose tea of both of my favorite teas taste much better than when I bought tea bags containing those varieties.
Maybe it’s just me. If you can tell a difference too (or not) I’d love to hear about it.
My Two Favorite Teas
My favorite teas are English Breakfast and Rooibos (a/k/a Red Bush from Africa).
This is my tea with caffeine and the first of the day. (I need at least one cup a day to keep from getting that “caffeine withdrawal” headache. I allow myself two cups.)
- Rooibos Tea (a/k/a Red Bush or African Red Bush)
I love this tea.
Actually it’s an herbal tea, but it’s robust enough when brewed properly (at least 5 minutes) that it tastes like regular tea except without the bitterness of most teas. (Being low in tannins accounts for that.) And it has no caffeine.
In addition to tasting good, it’s good for you.
- Good source of the minerals like calcium, iron, potassium, copper, zine and magnesium.
- Source of flavonoids (name for the largest nutrient family) like luteoline and quercetin (which are also in onions).
- Has soothing properties that promote relaxation and sleep.
How You Might Benefit from My Story
The obvious way you might benefit is by trying for yourself The Genie teakettle, my favorite two teas, and relaxing by reading some of McCall’s series of the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency. (They achieved bestseller status on four continents.)
The second way you might benefit is by keeping in mind that one or all of these things might just fit the bill for someone on your gift buying list.
Now that I’m finished telling my story, I’ll heat up water in The Genie and have a cup of Red Bush. I’ll be thinking of you as I do.