Last week I offered up some tips and background on one of my favorite ways to make tea, using nothing but the warm, sunny sun. Obviously, that’s not always an option. And while sun tea works great for iced brews, on a cold, blustery day, it’s nice to have a cup that’s piping hot.
There are lots and lots of options for boiling water for tea. The most basic approach, of course, is to just boil water in a saucepan on the stove. Then there is the wide array of kettles and tea pots. Some folks have a hot water tap on their coffeemaker or water cooler. I’ve come to be a big fan of yet another option: the electric kettle.
I got my electric kettle as a gift. It isn’t something I would have ever asked for, but I sure am glad I have it. The tall, sleek silver carafe sits on top of a base that plugs into the wall. All you have to do is fill the carafe, sit it back in place, and flip a switch on the base. It lights up and begins to heat the water, until it audibly boils and the light and switch flip off. The whole process takes a minute or so.
I use it daily for making tea and drip coffee, and have also used it to heat water for a hot compress, as well as for augmenting a pot of hot water for steaming or boiling something. By getting as many as 17 liters of H2O hot and steamy in a few minutes, this thing can be a lifesaver in a pinch.
Necessary for the home kitchen? Definitely not. Handy to have around? Definitely so.
If you’re interested in grabbing an electric kettle, shop around for the model that best fits your needs. On the fancy end, they come in brushed stainless with a variety of temperature settings for different types of teas and brews. On the simpler side of things, you can grab a standard stainless, one-setting version for as little as $11. See what works best for you.