Cast iron teapots also known as Tetsubin keep the tea much longer than teapots made from other materials. The leaves are better extracted thanks to the even heat distribution of the cast iron body.More About Cast Iron Teapots ▼ Close
It may not be possible to exactly pinpoint the year in which these iron teapots first came into being. Also known as Tetsubin, there are many historians who believe that it has a special relationship with the rise to fame of Sencha. Sencha, basically is a way of drinking tea where loose leaf tea is used instead of powdered tea. Powdered tea is also known as Matcha. There are some evidences to suggest that Sencha was introduced to China and Japan in the 17th Century. It was initially an informal ceremony of drinking of herbs that were medicinal in nature. It also was a symbolic revolt against the formality of Chanoyu. This was another specially thought about and executed Japanese tea ceremony. This ceremony was seemingly influenced by Zen Buddhism. The ruling class had a liking for these ceremonies and was very popular amongst them.
Sencha started the practice of informal tea-drinking and over a period of time it became highly popular. Japanese people started adopting this form of tea drinking as a daily activity and it was shared with friends and family members. This perhaps led to the birth of Tetsubin because it made it easier to adopt and put in practice this new found liking and love for tea as far as the Japanese people were concerned. The main idea was to move away from the expensive tea-making items from China because they are suitable for use by kings and lords. Further, they were more suited for those who drank tea in very formal settings.
This gave rise to the regular use and increased demand for what is referred to day as Japanese teapot. Hence there is no doubt that these cast iron teapots have a rich history and culture and are many centuries old. They have evolved, grown and changed with times and it would not be wrong to mention that these teapots also have stood the test of time quite efficiently. Over the years, these teapots of iron change in appearance and ergonomics. The simple and basic designs gave way to intricately-designed ones that came with engravings. They also became more elaborate and became more ornate. Today, there is a wide range of Testubin across various price ranges and owning one certainly makes a lot of sense. It reflects the class and sophistication of the owners who use it for drinking that wonderful cup of tea during various times of the day.
There are obviously a number of benefits of using a cast iron teapot. We are listing down some off the benefits.
To begin with, since they are made from seasoned iron of the best quality, they are extremely durable and long-lasting. There are instances where these iron teapots have been passed on to more than one generation. If you are staying in a cold climate and would like to keep the tea hot for a considerably long period of time, it is quite obvious that a Japanese teapot could be the best choice. The iron that it is made of is a good conductor of heat and therefore it is able to retain heat for a much longer period of time when compared to porcelain and other materials. It is a product that is popular both with customers and manufacturers. This is because of the design features and of course the material that is used. It is non-toxic and can be molded into different shapes. It is made using molds rather than by the skills of potters. Hence, manufacturers also find this a better option. The cast iron teapots can be used both as a kettle and as teapot. It can accommodate both wood-burning stove and gas and this is something that goes well when there is a get-together or other such events. The original taste of the brew will continue to remain great even after years of use.
The brewing process is quite simple and can be learnt and mastered quite easily.
The first step is to warm the teapot using warm water. This reduces the risk of thermal shock to the enamel surface. The loose tea has to be placed in the infuser – around 1 tea spoonful in 200 ml of water. Boil water in a kettle. Pour the hot water into the teapot and ensure that the water covers the loose leaf in the infuser. Put the lid into it. It should be allowed to steep for five minutes approximately. This might go up depending on the type of tea leaves that is being brewed. The infuser should be removed.
To begin with iron teapots may not be useful for stove top use. Once the tea has been brewed and served, allow the teapot to cool. This is a must after each use and only then cleaning should be done. Never use detergents or soaps. Prevent contact with oils and salts. Never wash it in a dishwasher. The water in the teapot should be kept only for a short period of time. Cleaning and rinsing should be done only with pure water. Wipe the insides and outsides of the pot when the pot is warm. Invert the pot so that it gets air-dried. Replace the lid and the infuser. The infuser should be cleaned with or without soapy water.
If the above steps are followed, your favorite Japanese teapot will remain as good as new for years at length and offer you the tastiest and aroma-filled tea drinks, year on year