Seeking Tips On Storing Coffee and Tea : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) Preparation Forum : One Thread

Well, mainly coffee (the tea part was for Mrs. Big Dog). This is spurred by the thread on coffee pots. Despite storing most everything, haven't done anything for coffee yet. Not sure whether to get green beans and roast, beans, cans or .... ??? Tea bags? Loose tea?

All tips welcome except for growing. That ain't gonna happen here in the snow zone.

(Coffee and tea make great barter items)

-- BigDog (, July 08, 1999


Commercial coffee services these days deliver to their customers boxes of 10-cup packets, Big Dog. Each packet is vacuum sealed. I put the packets into a plastic food-grade containers, drop in a couple of oxygen absorbers and seal it.

Check with one of those commercial services about buying in bulk, or see if they will deliver to your home. By the way, they're available in either regular or decaf.

As for the tea, I've been buying, on sale, boxes of family-sized tea bags. I guess I'll leave them in the boxes and try to go the plastic-pail-oxy-absorber route with them, too.

-- Vic (, July 08, 1999.

I have bought the large cans of Folgers (50 of the suckers)They are already ground and VACUM packed. I have used coffee packed this way that was at least 10 years old. Personally, I think its the best and easiest way to go. Lately I have been using a 4 cup coffee pot instead of an eight cup. I make the four cups and chubby hubby drinks most of it before heading for work. I add water and reboil (I use old metal pots you put on the stove). I cannot tell the difference of the two pots. I do boil the second pot longer. Getting stingey in my old age, I guess. Re tea...I get only those teas that are packed in individual foil packets. I never had much luck with keeping Lipton fresh for very long. Also be careful where you store it as it will take up flavors.

Taz...who used to enjoy her teas and coffees by the woodstove, but now in Florida gulps ice tea instead!!

-- Taz (Tassie, July 08, 1999.

Over the past year of reading many posts about preparing for y2k, I remember reading that whole coffe beans will keep for years. Put some in a pot and boil and reuse over and over. Green beans last longer than roasted ones. Also turn the coffee cans over every few months to distribute the oil in the coffee. After many months the oil will settle to the bottom and make the coffe taste terrible. I couldn't live without my tea, so I have packages in foil that I bought from a restuarant supply. Also I have Lipton loose leaf tea stored and lots of tea bags. I buy the gallon size tea bags from Sam's. I hate sun tea, it tastes terrible! We southerners know our ice tea!

-- Carol (, July 08, 1999.

So how does a real Southerner make good ice tea? Sometimes mine is good...sometimes bleh....

-- MUTTI (windance, July 08, 1999.

BigDog, when I was a child (yeah, THAT long ago), in England we still got loose tea in "tea chests" from India and Ceylon. I remember seeing the grocer's boys packing it into half- and one-pound bags! The tea chests were large wooden crates, solid pieces of wood for each side (I think it might have been thin plywood). They were about a 3-4' cube, or so it seems to my old memory. I'm sure they had been in use from day one, or thereabouts. Anyway, point is, when tea was first shipped it took a LONG time to get from the plantations to the warehouses to the docks to the warehouses to the distributors to the shops. Nothing to protect the cargo from extremes of temperature. Despite those adverse condtions, tea became the number one drink in Britain, so it couldn't have suffereed TOO much from the rough handling.

I believe coffee was similarly shipped, except in sacks rather than crates.

For my own bean coffee storage, I'm storing in the original vacuum bags, in pails, sealed with duct tape--no oxy absorbers. I had some the other day, from a year ago, it was as good as the day it was bought. I'm storing the tea bags (Sweetie drinks it sometimes, not me) similarly--we buy Twining's and it comes cellophane wrapped.

-- Old Git (, July 08, 1999.

Might not be helpful but have frozen unused tea leaves successfully.

-- Chris (, July 08, 1999.

The secret is to bring the tea to a boil but don't boil and remove from heat. If you strain the tea bags to get all the liquid out, you will have a hazy tea with some sediment. I use four family size tea bags for 1 gal. ( 12 regular bags) Place the tea bags in a small pot and bring up to a boil. Pour in pitcher with sugar and stir until sugar is dissovled. Add water to make a gal. You must refrigerate tea to keep it fresh for over a day or it will have the wangy taste found in sun tea, or tea made in less than boiling heat.

-- Carol (, July 08, 1999.

Greetings Big Dog!

Our local Wal-mart currently has the big cans of Maxwell House on sale for $5.18. They're vacum sealed and will last a long time,have kept these cans at least 5 years before opening.Remember to save the plastic lids that come with them,even if you discard the can,they will also fit the no# 10 cans.

As for tea,we're vacum-sealing the bags and storing in metal or plastic containers.Also bought up alot of the different varieties of instant tea.Taste isn't quite the same,but it beats the heck out of plain ole water.This is one area that people need to look at,especially where young kids are concerned.We have stored alot of the instant drink mixes by Kool-Aid,Country-Time,Tang and so forth.Loaded with vitamin C and will take the bite out of bad tasting water.

Hey Mutti,listen to Carol,she knows how to make good ole southern iced tea. That's the way I make it and I'm a male. I just wish I could come up with a way to make ice cubes without power.Well,hopefully we'll have it before the heat and humidity arrives next year!

Take care ya'll!

-- Ex-Marine (Digging, July 08, 1999.

Our iced tea method is similar to Carol's: put three family-sized tea bags in a half-gallon Rubbermaid-type pitcher. Bring a teapot full of water to boil and pour over. Let steep until lukewarm or cool. Add sugar or sweetener to taste, then fill pitcher with cold water. This isn't a last-minute thing - I usually let it steep at least 90 minutes if not several hours (and often overnight).

Refrigeration isimportant.

Jill in Georgia

-- Jill (, July 09, 1999.

In Mexico drinking water is kept in an unglazed pitcher on the table. As some of the water seeps through the container it keeps the contents cool.

-- flora (***@__._), July 09, 1999.

Hi Big Dog!

Atlanta boasts a coffee expert, John Martinez, who told me that coffee after it is ground should be kept in an airtight canister at room temperature (in the dark, I think).

Depending on how long you plan to store it, I would recommend that you purchase roasted whole beans. Use your Corona mill (if it isn't strong enough to grind coffee, don't buy it) when the time comes. Just grind enough for what you will use that day.

Perhaps diatomaceous earth would be helpful in the sack of beans. I'm not sure about that. Anyway, I don't think that the roasted whole beans will go bad in your lifetime if they are kept dry in a dark corner somewhere.

-- GA Russell (, July 09, 1999.

From the Classic Forum circa December 1998, "A Y2k Cup of Joe"

-- flora (***@__._), July 09, 1999.

Flora...I was raised near the Mexican border and we had those clay pots for water. I THINK they were called Ojas. I live in Florida now and do not have access to anything Mexican. But I have sooooooo often thought of those and wished I could buy one. I am sure they must still use them down there. Have thought of finding a potter and having one made, but would cost a fortune. But one always has cool water with one of those pots. Anyone on the border who wants to buy and resell these things????

Taz...who can still taste the cool and clay flavored water.

-- Taz (Tassie, July 09, 1999.


Am pretty sure they sell these things in the Colonial Kitchens catalogue. Not sure if they're on-line. If not, no sweat, I'll be getting one soon! Will let you know when I see one. (They're pictured on a wooden stand, blue and white crock, I think).

-- Old Git (, July 09, 1999. =99999999&pg=/et/99/7/9/ntea09.html

ISSUE 1505, Friday 9 July 1999

Tea cuts the risk of heart disease, By Roger Highfield, Science Editor

A DAILY cup of tea was hailed yesterday as a potential weapon in the fight against heart disease.

Tea drinking is associated with a reduction in heart attack risk, said Prof Catherine Rice-Evans of the International Antioxidant Research Centre at Guy's Hospital, who chaired a meeting at the Royal Society of Medicine in London to discuss chemicals known as flavonoids.

Found in the millions of cups of tea consumed by Britons each day, flavonoids are protective chemicals which neutralise highly reactive free radicals. Their properties can inhibit atherosclerosis, the furring up of arteries leading to strokes and coronary illness.

Results from a study by Dr Michel Gaziano of Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, revealed that men and women who drank one or more cups of tea a day had a 44 per cent reduction in heart attack risk compared to non-tea drinkers.

The study also showed that there was no association between drinking regular or decaffeinated coffee and heart attack risk, said Prof Rice-Evans, who admits to drinking "one or two cups of tea each day".

Only consumption of one or more cup of tea appeared to be associated with a reduced risk, which was "highly significant", said Prof Rice-Evans, adding that one flavonoid in tea was related to one in red wine, noted for its benefits if taken in moderation.

She added that although the tea effect was real, there were confounding factors: for instance that regular coffee drinkers were more likely to smoke and drink, and that tea drinkers tended to be older, female and sedentary. More studies were needed to see if the effect was due to tea, or if tea consumption indicated healthier behaviour.

"Based on our research, black tea may be associated with a lower risk of heart attack," commented Dr Gaziano. "However, more work is necessary to confirm the results."

His study investigated the tea and coffee drinking habits of 680 people, aged 76 and under, and included one set of heart attack victims and the same number of healthy volunteers.

The research complements other evidence suggesting that, as a group, people who drink black tea may have a reduced risk of heart disease and stroke. For example, a Dutch study of more than 800 men, aged between 65 and 84, showed that those drinking 3.4 cups of tea a day decreased their risk of death from coronary heart disease by 58 per cent.

-- Old Git (, July 09, 1999.

I hate to be a party pooper, but every time I use a teabag (which is rarely), I remember many years ago finding worms in tea. I don't remember if it was loose tea or bags, but I do remember those worms. Yuck

-- Pearlie Sweetcake (, July 09, 1999.

Tea. I'm buying tea for long trm storage in foil (or glassine) packages. Shorter term I'm getting some that is in paper packages. My experience is that the paper packages do not store as well in the long term (over 6 months).

Coffee. We are storing whole, roasted beans (locally produced). Ground tends to lose flavor (especially after opening). In my experience, green beans may have some insects (although the coffee oil is a natural insecticide - which almost makes me wonder about drinking the stuff!). We are looking at a hand grinder (difficult to find, but CAMPMOR has one for $13.50 plus shipping, I believe).

If you buy green beans, and roast them yourself, you will have the pleasure of the delightful aroma...

Long term, we are growing our own coffee (several varieties), and are currently trying to find some cocoa trees. Some cocoa storage.

-- Mad Monk (, July 09, 1999.


There is a small Mexican pottery shop in Inverness on the main hwy through town. San Gabriel Pottery. The couple that runs it makes regular buying trips to Mexico. If they are not too far from you possibly you could have them look for that item on their next trip. I go there each time I'm in town to see what's new. Great prices too.

mb in NC

-- mb (, July 09, 1999.

Isn't unglazed pottery poisonous?

-- Pearlie Sweetcake (, July 09, 1999.


I 'spose it would depend on the type of clay. Most toxic pottery is due to the decorative glazes. They pitchers that I'm thinking of were your basic terra cotta.

-- flora (***@__._), July 09, 1999.

Right, it's lead in the glaze; has been found in Mexican pottery.

-- Old Git (, July 09, 1999.

Thought some of you might be interested in trying my wife's iced tea recipe. We call it "Fruit Tea".

She makes a half gallon of regular tea, lets it cool to room temperature, then adds the juice of 3 oranges, 1 lime, and half a lemon, all fresh squeezed. Add about 1 and 1/2 cups sugar, (maybe less depending on how sweet the oranges are), stir well, pour over ice in a glass and enjoy! Be sure to let the tea cool to room temperature before adding juice because hot tea will give the juice a cooked flavor that is not as good.


-- Gerald R. Cox (, July 10, 1999.

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