How can I properly clean a tin so I can put another tea in it?
I want to re-use those tea tins you buy at davids tea, but I’m not sure on how to clean them properly. I bought a seasonal tea and have it stored in a tin, when the tea runs out I would like to go back to the store and buy a different kind of tea using the old tin. Any words of advice?
Here’s what I do… although I don’t know if it’s “proper” or not. I rinse out the tin and allow it to air dry. Then, I allow it to “air out” for at least a couple of days… and I feel like this serves two purposes. One, it ensures that it is completely dry before I put more tea into it, and two, it helps to rid the tin of any remaining scent from the previous tea.
Like I said, I don’t know if it’s the proper way to do it, but, it works for me, as I have been reusing tins for many years now.
With some of my David’s Tea tins, I just emptied and filled it – no airing out and no washing. With others (stronger scented/radically different teas) I would do as LiberTeas recommends: wash it, let it dry for a few days and then re-fill away!
I do like others do: wash it (I use soap), then let it dry for a bit, making sure that water is out of any seams, sniff, and if I can’t smell the old tea I fill ’er up. If I can still smell it I start the process over again.
I just put mine in the dishwasher and then leave them on the table with the lid off for a few days to air out and get properly dry. I sniff them to see how much they smell like the previous tea, and I’ve only had smell-problems with strongly flavoured ones. I also inspect them inside for beginning rust spots. When the tin starts getting rusty on the inside, I toss it.
If it’s a Standard Panel tin and I’m just pouring the same thing in it again, I don’t generally bother with the washing process.
I also dishwash my tins when I reuse them. The only tins that I have noticed a residual flavor in were flavored teas. Earl Grey seems to be a particular offender due to the oil of Bergamont.
Some citrusy and “oily” (Earl Grey for sure) teas don’t ever come out of the tins. But I have good luck with the same wash/dry method others do. If I really need to get an oil out, I’ll scrub with baking soda/water paste, dry, and then fill it up with dry baking soda. I’ve had good luck with smelly things like that (it even saved some musty mold smelling Christmas decorations from childhood…)
so far, for my Davids Tea tins, I wipe them out with damp paper towel, air dry a few minutes and refill…
I wash them with soap and water, dry them thoroughly, then sniff for any remaining scent. Do it again if needed. That’s all.
Dishwasher here, too. I always let them air out for a couple of days, though. Just in case there’s any residual moisture in them from the wash.