Tea gifts are awesome for the tea lover in your life. Who doesn’t like a gift that will please the palate along with all the other senses? As we know, tea gifts often include tealeaves and in order to draw out the delicious flavors and aromas of those leaves, you must brew them. One of the best vessels to do that in is the tetsubin, a cast iron teapot that originates from Japan. Continue on to learn the process involved in using one of these beautiful teapots.
Select and Measure Your Tea
You can brew any tea in a tetsubin but for those seeking a traditional experience, green tea is the way to go. It has a soothing floral aroma and slightly sweet taste. Although you can use any tea you like, stick with one for your tetsubin since the flavors and aromas do stick around. As for the amount of tea, you need 1 teaspoon for every cup of water meaning your tea gifts will last a while. Add the leaves directly into the tetsubin or add to the matching strainer basket if included.
Prep Your Tetsubin
After you have boiled water in a separate kettle, you want to use that water to prepare the tetsubin. First, fill it with boiling water and pour that water out. This thoroughly cleans the teapot, which can be difficult because of its shape. Along with cleaning the cast iron teapot, adding boiling water brings it up to temperature. Starting each brew with a hot pot will actually keep your tea warm for about an hour.
Heat the Water
Once your cast iron pot is clean, set it aside and heat the water you will use to brew the tea. You want to remove the water from the heat before it boils. The ideal temperature is 175-185 degrees F depending on the tea. Getting the temperature just right not only optimizes taste but boosts health properties.
Steep, Decant and Serve
To make your tea, pour the water over the tealeaves in the tetsubin and steep. Green tea should steep for 2 minutes while 3-4 minutes is recommended for white tea, 3-5 minutes for oolong tea gifts, and 30 seconds for pu-erh. After steeping the tea, decant it. If you have a strainer basket, you can remove the basket and pour the tea directly out of the tetsubin which adds to the experience. If your teapot did not come with a strainer basket, pour the liquid through a strainer and into another preheated vessel. At this point, all you have to do is serve and enjoy your tea gifts.
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