Good morning, sippers! I hope that you all were able to have a wonderful weekend with your loved ones and enjoy some of the first fall weather of the season! Lately, both in our store and online, we have noticed an increased interest in our cast iron tea ware. This has caused quite the celebration here in the shop so thank you! We love when we get to share our love for our teas and tea ware products with you and our cast iron tea sets are such a special subset of our inventory. In this blog post, I'll be detailing a little bit of history on these cast iron sets, how to use them, and why they are a great product in terms of being user friendly and their share-ability features!
Cast Iron teapots hail traditionally from the Iwate region of Japan where they were originated as early as the 17th century. They are different than what you may think of as a teapot in that you don't boil the water within them on a stove. Cast Iron as a material is known to hold heat for extended periods of time so when preparing your tea (I'll give a more in depth description of this process below), you begin by warming the pot with hot water, which will be poured out, before infusion of the tea. They were created as a way to conserve the use of other resources such as firewood or kindling, normally used to boil water, that could be later used for cooking, while still being able to enjoy hot tea throughout the morning or afternoon hours. The Iwate region in Japan is known for its craftsmanship of these beautiful tea vessels as they are handmade of 100% cast iron. You will notice in our products the gorgeous details that make each pot or cup unique, as well as adds to the luxury of these items. As mentioned, they are not unique in just their design though, let's delve into how to go about using these exquisite pieces.
Preparing tea for yourself or any guest that you may have using one our cast iron tea sets involves a particular and distinctive process. To do so, you follow the steps below.
1. This is an easy step. Pick your favorite loose leaf tea! While cast iron is traditionally used to prepare green teas, there is no reason why you can't use it for your favorite black, white, oolong, or tisane tea as well.
2. Heat your cast iron teapot. To do so, do not place it directly on the stove or another heat source — this could cause it to crack (craze). Instead, boil water in a kettle and fill your teapot with the hot water. After about 5-10 minutes you will then tip out the water through the spout and down the drain. This will help warm up and rinse out your teapot. Don't worry, as mentioned, cast iron holds heat very well so your vessel will remain hot for steeping and holding of your tea.
3. Measure out how much tea you will need for those your are serving. You're going to want about 1 teaspoon per 8 ounces of water. Place your tea of choice in the included infuser basket of your teapot and place it back in the teapot.
**We have different sized teapots so as you are deciding which one is best for you, make sure to take a look at this as well!**
4. Add new and fresh heated water to your teapot (that is already warmed from Step 2) and begin to steep your tea - directly in the teapot! On each of our teas, there is a sticker which denotes the appropriate temperature and steeping time for that particular tea.
5. Serve your tea! Pour the tea to whomever is ready to enjoy it now, remove your infuser to prevent over-steeping, and leave the remainder of your tea within the teapot where it will remain warm due to the initial warming.
In using a cast iron teapot to make your tea, you are participating in a historical and traditional preparation method. Because of this, we highly recommend that as you sit and enjoy your tea, whether it is alone or with friends, you put away your phone or electronic devices and take these moments to savor and enjoy the tea and the company of those around you. That is how our teas are intended to be experienced and appreciated.
As mentioned, these teapots are extraordinarily user friendly as they already include a built-in infuser. This makes it so you don't have to strain your tea. We also love them as they are easy to clean. Simply clean the pot with warm water and let air dry. Please make sure that you are using warm water, as opposed to cold, because if your teapot is still hot from steeping, you may encounter cracking. We also warn users against using detergents, soaps, oils, or salts in these as they can cause damage due to the cast iron nature. Another lovely factor to these teapots and teacups is there are each handmade and unique, as mentioned, so they make lovely decorative pieces. In my own apartment, I leave mine out on my counter as it is so beautiful and it never fails to become an instant conversational cause for guests that I have over! Once I explain a bit about it, I offer them a cup of tea, that I promptly prepare within the teapot to be enjoyed in the small cast iron teacups that accompany it.
Should you have any further questions on this hot new item, please don't hesitate to shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We love to hear from you. Let us know if you have one of these already and what you love about it. Let us know which teas you enjoy in yours or if you have added anything to the preparation process. I hope you all have a wonderful week and are able to enjoy the sunshine! Happy sipping! - Kaytea :)
P.S. I'm sure you have seen in the recent news to be prepared for shipping delays that may be coming up. Don't worry, we have heard too, and have an upcoming blog post that will detail some suggestions we have for you in terms of thinking ahead and getting some of your holiday shopping done early! Stay tuned!