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Wholemeal Crank

Traveling with tea

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I'm trying to figure out what is a good, practical kit for traveling with my own tea. For me this means being able to make at least a pint of tea to carry with me in my backpack for drinking through the day when in meetings etc, where the teas provided, if any are at all, are usually exactly the sort of english breakfast teas I dislike.

I love my little electric kettle that I use at work, but it's a one liter size, and I can't find any that are much smaller than that. I'd really like to have a one pint size, and I've seen some electric mugs but those mostly seem to heat rather than boil the water. I also have used an immersion heater coil plus a pyrex measuring cup, but the dedicated electric kettles are quicker and faster.

I have a lovely inexpensive glass teapot with built-in strainer at the spout, so no need for an infuser.

And a small tupperware or ziploc bag can hold a few days' worth of one tea.

What I want is a small kit like a toiletries kit that will hold this stuff, protect the glass teapot from airport baggage gorillas, and live in the suitcase at all times, ready to add tea and go.

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Are you sure a glass teapot is the way to go? i would have thought something less breakable might be better...

I am very low tech. I have small metal box in my purse with a few Barry tea bags, and if i am flying a long way, some sachets of vile all in one hong kong milk tea or chai It is kind of not the best thing, but it does not need boiling water or separate milk, and makes me feel more at home on a plane.

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A glass teapot is probably not the best choice, but it is lighter and would be less prone torust than a tetsubin, more compact than any metal one I've seen, and quite inexpensixe to replace should it break. I'd love one made of lexan for something like this. I have a variety of tea balls but they don't generally allow enough room for full expansion of a good amount of tea, or if they do, they're too large too fit in a mug, much less the mouth of a thermos

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I've seen these travel mug/tumblers that have the built-in press where you toss in loose tealeaves, add water, press down, and drink directly from it. I believe Bodum brand has a couple models specifically for tea. Downside is you can't remove the leaves until you've finished drinking it (although you could pour it off into a separate cup).

For myself, I tend to use disposable tea filters. They're a teabag-type material with a slit cut in the top. Fill with leaves and drop in your cup, toss out the filter when you're done. You can even pre-fill a bunch of filters, roll them up, and tuck them away in your carry-on luggage. However, like tea balls, these don't allow for as much expansion of tealeaves, but for portability purposes they are perfectly adequate.

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Lots of good ideas here.

I agree that glass is not likely to survive airline baggage handling. If it has to be a teapot as such, how about a small ceramic one. About $7 - $8 at an Asian market.

Or a mug and a fine screen infuser basket. There are several brands, and all work pretty well, much better than a tea ball. There is one brand I now prefer that someone here recommended; it has very straight sides and the roomiest basket for the leaves to expand in. Make two infusions of a good tea and you have your pint.

But I don't have a clue as to a pint-size electric kettle.

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I do have a nice little lexan mug--light and sturdy--and a spare wire mesh infuser that also should be pretty sturdy.

Just would like a smaller electric kettle, and I'll be all set.

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Why didn't I think of this before. There are Chinese water kettles of several sizes made by Kamjove. I don't know what the smallest is, maybe a litre. Check that favorite Chinese grocery of yours; I know they carry at least a couple models.

Found it on their birdpick.com website. It's a 0.8 ltr model and I doubt you will find one smaller.

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I have one like this

amazon proctor-silex kettle

which is more compact than some of these others because it is basically an electric heating element built into a plastic pitcher, no base required, just a short cord.

Probably I should just buy another one of these, and figure out a little teapot or cup/infuser set that would fit inside it. That may be as compact as I can get.

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I posted this photo last year while I was traveling as this is the tea "kit" I have found that is the most useful to me, along with an electric kettle.

gallery_17399_60_95288.jpg

This is the larger of the two IngenuiTea tea makers - I also have the 16 ounce but it only produces 12 ounces of brewed tea while the output of this one is at least 20 ounces.

It dispenses the tea out of the bottom when it is placed on top of a mug or other container. It comes with a base on which it is placed while brewing or when you don't want to dispense it.

It is virtually unbreakable - this one has fallen from the top of a high shelf and bounced across the terrazzo tile floor in my kitchen on more than one occasion with no damage.

The screen filter in the bottom will discolor over time but a few drops of bleach in water, allowed to set for a few minutes, then drained through the bottom, will take care of this problem - rinse it a couple of times afterward.

When I travel from place to place, I carry a 1-3/4-quart teakettle like this one

However, when I am going to be staying in one hotel for several days, I use this one, gallery_17399_60_81279.jpg

also posted last year during a trip to New Mexico.

Everything fits into a roll-on case that fits the "carry-on" size criteria, although I have never carried it onto the plane but have sent it along with the rest of my checked luggage.


Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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That's just lovely.

I'm trying to figure out a very compact kit, taking less space in my suitcase, without going all the way down to a heating coil and a mug and a teabag.

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How about a Sunbeam Hot Shot 16 oz

Check the size - it is very compact. I think someone else mentioned it.

One of my friends packs this in an overnight case (with a travel mug fitted into the open space of the Hot Shot) to brew single-serve coffee bags - she is not a tea drinker.

I bought one of these for my granddaughter to take to camp - doesn't have an exposed heat source and shuts off automatically which was the only way they would allow this kind of appliance.

It survived two weeks of being used by a group of 14-year-old girls! :blink: I think it is fairly sturdy.


Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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