A Tea Addict's Journal

Caring for a tetsubin

July 7, 2008 · 3 Comments

One of the tetsubins I have came with its original box, and inside the box are two inserts. One is a list of the artist’s achievements — awards, shows, etc that he has been in (among which was apparently a purchase by the emperor!). The other, though, is rather interesting and which I neglected to read when I got it — it’s about caring for the tetsubin.

The first part of it is rather simple and not worth mentioning, but the last part has four points, which are rather interesting

1) Use pure water, rather than tap water. If you have to use tap water, then you should let it sit for a night before using it — and only skim off the top, not the whole container. The bad stuff, such as whatever chlorine or anything else they use, will sink to the bottom, so they say
2) Use a mild heat to dry the thing out thoroughly after use, and let it sit uncovered for the night so that it doesn’t trap moisture inside. That’s sensible.
3) Use a cotton cloth that’s slightly damp to wipe the outside of the kettle after use, while it’s still warm. That I didn’t think about at all
4) Never use it on a gas stove, it’ll crack the damn thing.

I wonder what the damp cloth will do. Maybe I should try doing that from now on.

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3 responses so far ↓

  • Anonymous // July 7, 2008 at 10:53 am | Reply

    My guess about the cloth (and it’s only that) is that a slightly dampened cloth can often be more absorbent than one that is 100% dry.

    I’ve noticed this particularly in the case of linen tea towels, but it’s probably true of cotton as well.

    Good advice about leaving the tetsubin uncovered for the night. I haven’t always done that – will have to start!

  • mulcahyfeldman // July 8, 2008 at 3:43 pm | Reply

    I’ve always used my tetsubin on a gas stove and am careful to dry it with a soft cloth and to leave the lid off at night. Are you perhaps referring to the tetsubins only used for brewing, not the kettle types? Eileen

  • MarshalN // July 9, 2008 at 1:01 am | Reply

    No, this is kettle

    I think the reason they say this is because if the water level is low, the chance of cracking is higher. Gas (and electric, I’m guessing) heat up a small area of the pot a lot, while the surrounding areas are not nearly as hot if you get away from it a little… which means potential problems?

    It also depends on the stove, I’d imagine…. some heat evenly, others don’t. I’ve definitely used stoves that don’t heat evenly when I tried to cook… it’s annoying.

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