Hello, teople (that means tea-people, although teaple is also an acceptable spelling. It’ll catch on.) and welcome back to the awesome blog that celebrates all things tea-related. Tea-lated? No, that doesn’t sound right, I’ll come back to that one. Relatead! Maybe not.
Anyway, I have been searching for those accessories that all teanthusiasts should have and my findings have ranged from the obvious and indispensable, to the creatively awesome ones that you may not necessarily need as such, but will certainly want. So without further ado, I present to you five basic essential accessories and five others that get in purely on the strength of being awesome.
Here are five basic essentials for making that perfect cup of tea:
5. A Kettle
Step one: boil water
Pretty obvious here, whether you choose the easy option of an electric kettle or go old-fashioned and heat up a classic whistling kettle instead, you need some kind of method of heating the water sufficiently. If you are really stuck you could use a saucepan, although you might scald yourself when it comes to pouring it, those things are awkward. I once made tea in a wok – it did not go well.
4. A Teapot
Less compulsory than a kettle admittedly but when it comes to brewing loose tea, this is arguably the best way to go about it. While infusers are all well and good in a cup, if you are brewing in a teapot, it is best to let the leaves swim wild and free so the flavour can really spread. Additionally, you should make sure it is the right size in terms of how much tea you are making. Any empty space in the teapot will allow air in, which cools the tea quicker than you may like and can also affect the taste.
3. A Timer
For those who want to be really specific about it a timer will help you steep that tea properly. This is not always necessary but specific types of tea require different steeping times to get the best flavour out of them and while it doesn’t need to be to the exact second, it helps to have a timer guide you.
2. A Strainer
You’ve boiled your water, treated your burns, brewed your tea and allowed it to steep for as long as it needs and now it is time to pour it. “But wait a minute, Mr. Teanthusiast, how do I avoid pouring the loose leaves into my cup?” I hear you ask. Well, my answer to you is to acquire a strainer, which will catch any leaves as you pour your cup of tea and leave your beverage completely leafless. Honestly, you teople.
1. A Storage Container
Well it was either this or a cup but I’m 97% certain you figured that much out for yourselves. Those of you who are now horribly burnt after trying to drink it straight from the teapot or wok, once your wounds heal you will be a better person for the experience. But moving on, one of the most important elements to making the perfect cup of tea is correct storage, especially when it is loose, which of course is the only way to make the perfect cup. It needs to be airtight and kept in a cool, dry place out of the sun and away from anything with a strong taste or smell as it may absorb it over time.
So now you have your perfect cup of tea, would you like a little awesome with that? Of course you would, how could anyone not want these?
5. The Lazy Tea Pot
This one removes the burden of having to lift up a teapot and then tilt it slightly in order to make tea come out of it. Finally! In addition to that it has a temperature dial on the back so you can regulate the temperature of your tea. Once you are satisfied, it is just a simple matter of tilting it forwards on its stand to pour your tea. No longer will we have to worry about injuries resulting from the weight of a teapot. This truly is the future.
4. The Teastick
If you want to brew loose tea but only know how to brew teabags then the Teastick is your answer. It holds enough to brew one cup and you just have to dip it in the cup like a teabag. You can even stir with it, saving you the trouble of having to wash a spoon afterwards. Or at least rinse it like I do. Hey, it’s only tea.
3. My Cuppa Mug
It can be hard to get your tea exactly the way you want it without years of practise and studying. Fortunately, this mug comes with a built in colour chart, making it easier to mix it exactly the way you like it.
2. Penguin Tea Timer
Everyone loves penguins, at least they did in 2006 when no fewer than 47 of the year’s highest grossing films were about penguins. Who can forget Happy Feet, The Da Vinci Penguin, P for Penguin, Penguin of Men or March of the… well, I forget the name, but penguins were big. Anyway, that time has passed and no one cares anymore but this is still an awesome accessory. A penguin holds your teabag and pulls it out of the cup when it has brewed long enough, what’s not to like?
1. The Self-Stirring Tea Cup
This is it, we have arrived teople. While the French aren’t known for their tea, it turns out they really know how to stir it with products like this. This rather cool glass cup has a ceramic ball in the bottom that spins around the base when you swirl your cup, mixing it for you. You may not like the idea of drinking tea out of a glass but you can’t deny it’s a pretty cool idea. I bet it’s a pain to wash though.