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It’s Our Holiday Sweepstakes! Enter To Win A Personalized Bigelow Tea Gift Chest!

It’s the holiday season, a time to enjoy more of what we love the most: family, friends and Bigelow Tea! We’re helping to spread the good cheer with our December sweepstakes! Enter to win a handsome wood tea chest with burled top and light walnut finish, filled with some of our favorite flavored and herbal teas. And the top will be personalized just for you – or someone special on your gift list!

You have until December 16 to enter. Simply “like” our Facebook page by clicking the Like icon at the top of our Facebook  page (if you aren’t already a fan), then click the sweepstakes tab under our profile picture and enter your name. That’s it! Ten lucky winners will be chosen by random drawing on December 17th.

Each of the 10 winners will win one tea chest containing 8 tea bags each of the following Bigelow Tea varieties (64 tea bags in all):

This beautifully crafted wooden tea chest makes a truly special gift to be enjoyed by you and your family for years to come. Enter today, and have a joyous holiday season filled with love – and tea!

 

Our Bigelow Tea Recipe Winner Shares Some Sweet Thoughts!

Bigelow Tea was thrilled at the great response to our delicious Recipe Contest! Once we whittled down all the fantastic entries to the 15 contest finalists – no easy feat there – it was up to our astute tea loving public and guest judges to vote for the best Bigelow Tea-inspired recipe. Then we announced our Grand Prize winner – Diane Halferty, and her delectable White Chocolate Mint Mousse Tea Cups are a revelation!

We asked Diane where she came up with her culinary innovation. She told us “I thought a sweet Holiday nibble would be fun. What can be better than two kinds of chocolate paired with a gentle hint of mint filling? The recipe turned out to be a big hit with friends and family. Easy to prepare and it goes great with all kinds of foods!”

Diane is quite creative, “I have been cooking and creating new recipes for decades. I know what goes with what and always use quality ingredients. I think cooking for family and friends is giving a gift from my heart…the effort and care is well worth the results!”

Well worth it, indeed! Diane also shares that she would like to do a series of cook-books, and she gives some advice to aspiring cooks: “For a novice I would suggest reading cooking columns (like the New York Times or San Francisco Chronicle) all on line, and looking at magazines for ideas.  Keeping a file organized by either ingredient or by the kind of occasion, is helpful too.”  A great Bigelow Tea fan, Diane also added “…I am a BIG tea drinker, as is my husband…every morning and every night….I am thrilled about getting the tea!”

Thanks again for everyone who took part and voted, and all those who submitted such wonderful recipes.  Bigelow Tea fans rock!

Student Entrepreneurs from Avon Old Farm Visit Bigelow Tea

What a great day!  Avon Old Farm, a very prestigious private boys school, sent eighteen young men to visit Bigelow Tea. The boys from the Entrepreneurial club from the school took one of their vacation days to see our facility (are you kidding me!).

My father graduated from Avon many years ago and has a wonderful relationship with the school to this day. Last year the school awarded him the Avon Old Farm Alumni award for his contributions to society.  At that time, my father invited the club to come down to Fairfield, CT for a visit.  Today was the day…and what a day it was.

These young adults were very impressive on so many levels.  Their engagement, thoughtful questions and overall curiosity in how to run a successful and ethical business was enlightening.  Each student was eager to learn and genuinely interested in how my father and our family run this organization. We showed them the production floor, the teabag machines hard at work, and the blending operation.  We educated them on tea, had them drink different tea products and shared our sustainability efforts.

I cannot tell you how fantastic those high school boys were on their four hour tour and presentation.  Their bright eyes and inquisitive minds really reassured me; if this is the generation which we will depend on in the future, we are in good hands.  No, let me rephrase that, we are in GREAT hands.

Thank you Avon for a field trip we will all remember!

Cindi Bigelow

Additional note: Daniel Seiden, Director of Annual Giving at Avon Old Farms School, shared a link with us from the entirely student run and very popular blog, Avon Record.  Mr. Seiden says, “The boys are still raving about the field trip to Bigelow Tea and the Entrepreneur Club has quickly become one of the coolest groups on campus thanks to all the “Bigelow Buzz.”

Thanks once again.  It was a very positive day all around and Avon is quite the school!  Cindi Bigelow

Shop At Your Leisure With The Bigelow Tea Catalog!

Don’t you just love a beautifully presented catalog? Bigelow Tea knows how relaxing and convenient it can be to shop from your favorite comfy chair, especially while sipping a cup of Constant Comment or Eggnogg’n! So we’re excited to let you know that our fabulous 24-page Catalog is now available for you to peruse anytime!

Of course you can always shop for individual items on our Web site, but the catalog offers a fun shopping experience and fantastic gift-giving inspiration. And you can flip the pages online or in print – whichever you prefer. Going with the digital catalog saves paper and time…just click and go! You’ll love being able to bookmark pages and type notes about items of interest (like perhaps, the Pumpkin Spice Tea And Cookie Tin pictured above!).  To virtually flip through the catalog, just click on the lower right corner of each page.

If you’d rather flip through the real thing, fill out and send in this e-form or call us toll-free, 1-888-244-3569, and we’ll be happy to send you a catalog right away. (And please remember to recycle it when you’re finished shopping!) Inside you’ll find beautiful color photographs of unique tea-inspired gifts for any occasion, from handsome tea chests that can be personally engraved, to lovely teapots and treats that pair well with our teas. There’s really something for everyone.

And don’t forget to order something for yourself too! Happy armchair shopping to all!

 

Bigelow Tea Invites You To View Donald Duck In Tea For Two Hundred

At Bigelow Tea we love to smile which we can’t stop doing when we’re watching a classic Walt Disney clip featuring one of our favorite fine-feathered friends, Donald Duck!

Donald first appeared in the 1934 cartoon “The Wise Little Hen,” and soon became one of Disney’s most popular characters. Mickey’s best friend, it is noted in his IMBD film biography, “has a short tempter, and often goes into temper tantrums. However, he has a good heart and a sense of adventure.”

We’ve found one particular video that is not only hilarious, but has another element that appeals to us at Bigelow Tea: Donald’s enjoyment of our favorite beverage! “Tea For Two Hundred” begins with Mr. Duck emerging from his camping tent with a teapot and cup saying “oh boy, oh boy, oh boy! Hot stuff, hot stuff!” Funny … that’s exactly what we think each morning as we’re brewing our first cup of tea…! The rest of the cartoon revolves around his “antics” with a bunch of strong and clever ants. The only disappointing part of this classic short is that it appears that Donald never actually gets to sit down and enjoy his tea! The horror!

We hope you have better luck enjoying your morning tea, and while you’re here, we’re curious: just what type of tea youthink Donald might have been brewing in this cartoon? Share your thoughts!

Image by ccsx, via Flickr.com

Bigelow Tea And The Versatile Pomegranate Makes Entertaining Easy and Healthy!

It’s National Pomegranate Month and Bigelow Tea is more than happy to celebrate this wonderful—indeed, super!— fruit. The pomegranate is an ancient fruit that is even considered sacred in certain cultures and religions. Today it is enjoyed for its flavor and for the health benefits that come from its high levels of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.

At Bigelow Tea we have incorporated pomegranate into many of our teas including a Green Tea With Pomegranate and Pomegranate Pizzazz herbal tea. Moreover, we’ve created many recipes where pomegranate-flavored teas can be used—from appetizers to beverages—that will help make your holiday entertaining delicious and healthy!

Here are a few. Enjoy!

Pomegranate Yogurt Dip and Fresh Fruit

Ingredients:

1 cup (250mL) plain yogurt (non-fat yogurt not recommended)
¼ cup (60mL) boiling water
Bigelow Pomegranate Pizzazz® Herb Tea Bags
3 tablespoons (45mL) powdered sugar
Chopped dried cranberries for garnish (optional)

Yield: Serves 4. Prep time: 10 minutes – Cook Time: 10 minutes.

Instructions:

  • Pour boiling water over Bigelow Pomegranate Pizzazz® Herb tea bags. Let stand for 10 minutes.
  • Mix yogurt and powdered sugar. Add 4 tablespoons (60mL) tea mixture and stir well.
  • Place in an attractive bowl and garnish with cranberries (if desired).
  • Place a variety of fruit such as pineapple, kiwi, mango, papaya and bananas around the dip.

Pomegranate Bellini Mar-TEA-ni

Ingredients:
Bigelow® Pomegranate Pizzazz Herbal Tea Bags
1 ¼ cups (310mL) boiling water
4 ounces vodka
¼ cup (60mL) fresh orange juice
Pomegranate seeds if available

Yield: Serves 4

Instructions:

  • Place Bigelow® Pomegranate Pizzazz Herbal tea bags into a measuring cup and add 1¼ cups boiling water. Let brew for 3 minutes. Remove tea bags.
  • Allow to cool, and then chill. To chill place tea concentrate in the freezer for 30-45 minutes.
  • To make a martini, take two ounces of the cooled tea and mix it with 1 tablespoon of orange juice and one ounce of the vodka . Shake with ice and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with pomegranate seeds.

NOTE: If a sweeter Mar-TEA-ni is desired, add ¼ ounce (½ tablespoon) of orange flavored liquor (Triple Sec, Grand Mariner, or Cointreau) to each drink.

Top image by pizzodisevo via Flickr.com

Happy Thanksgiving To All!

From my home to yours, wishing you a warm and happy Thanksgiving!

Cindi Bigelow

 

 

 

 

Thanks To Generous Friends And Neighbors, Bigelow Tea Community Challenge Helps Makes Lives Better!

Back on a crisp fall September day, Bigelow Tea ran—and we mean ran!—its 24th annual charity race, the Bigelow Tea Community Challenge! Even though we hoped for a great turnout, we couldn’t help but be overwhelmed and incredibly excited by the sheer number of people participating in the race … and the generosity of time and support from all those involved!

Nearly 1,000 runners and walkers came out to participate in the event, which raised $110,000 for local charities near ourFairfield, CT headquarters. From the runners to the walkers to the children in the “scamper,” each participant made a difference in the lives of others that day!

Hundreds of children participated in the Kids’ Scamper

One hundred percent of the $110k raised was awarded to sixteen organizations that do everything from stocking food pantries to providing educational and sports programs for children in need. Company president Cindi Bigelow was thrilled with the results and the impact that it will have on the community:  “I can tell you I take a personal interest by visiting these charities regularly to observe, first hand, the positive impact these dollars make.  Some of the charities use the money to provide educational programs, some for sports.  Others use the funds for critical services like safe haven housing and youth and family crisis management.  Each year I am overwhelmed by the enormous need here in our community and by the fine services these charities provide.”

One recipient of the Community Challenge’s efforts is particularly important at this time of year. The Connecticut Food Bank, which has distributed more than 200 million pounds of food to hungry Connecticut residents since 1982, will use some of the $8000 from the Bigelow Tea Community Challenge to provide 24,000 meals for families in the area. It’s this kind of giving that makes us smile. We couldn’t be prouder of our community and its generous spirit! We look forward to next year’s event too, and again, thanks to all who participated!

Gardening at The Kennedy Center, Another Fruitful Day Giving Back!

Yesterday I spent the day with my team helping the Kennedy Center maintain one of their sixteen residential homes.  The Kennedy Center is a wonderful Connecticut based organization that supports individuals with special needs.  It allows those in the program to have a permanent residence which gives them a chance to create a life for themselves with a real sense of independence.

This is the second year in a row that our team was part of the “adopt a home” program.  Basically that means that we are assigned a home to which we, “do whatever the house needs.”  This year it was all outside upkeep.  Well we were a lot dirtier, our backs quite sore and we had a few scraps on our bodies, but we all came back to the office around 3:30 with huge smiles.

The sense of accomplishment was apparent in each and every one of my teammates.  It was truly enjoyable to have a day of simply using your hands to make a difference for the residents of this fine program.  The project ended up working out just super.  The yard looked quite spiffy if I must say so myself!  Great job team and what a joy to be able to work with each of you in that capacity.

Very fun and for a great cause.

Cindi Bigelow

 

Bigelow Tea’s Sensible Solutions For Thanksgiving Disasters!

Sustainability takes on new meaning when it comes to saving a potentially catastrophic Thanksgiving meal! That’s why Bigelow Tea wants to share some quick turkey fixes that will serve you well in case of a holiday culinary crisis this year!

  1. Frozen turkey:  So, you miscalculated and it’s still frozen…no worries. Fill the sink with cold water and dunk your turkey, breast side down (be sure the turkey is in leak-proof packaging). Change the cold water every 30 minutes and continue, until completely thawed (approximately 30 minutes per pound).
  2.  Undercooked turkey:  The guests are hungry, and your turkey is undercooked. Wipe away your tears with the nearest oven glove and then carve, cover and set aside what is cooked(i.e. the breast); continue cooking the dark meat. Serve the breast meat, followed by the dark meat once fully cooked.  It’s the turkey that keeps on giving.
  3. Burnt turkey:  Don’t panic (it ain’t over ’til it’s over!).  Remove the burnt skin, baste the turkey all over with some butter, garlic, parsley and a shallots (don’t overdo it with the shallots — they can be overpowering) and then cook at a reduced temperature, checking occasionally with your meat thermometer. 
  4. Dry meat:  Usually if you’ve basted the bird often, this won’t be a problem, but, if it is — simply drizzle the turkey with some chicken stock (if the turkey is brined, drizzle with pan gravy).

And as a bonus, here’s a fabulous Acorn Squash recipe featuring Bigelow Tea, a great addition to your sustainable Thanksgiving table!

Mashed Acorn Squash with Apple Cider Herb

Mashed

Ingredients:

Non-stick cooking spray
1 cup hot water
Bigelow® Apple Cider Herb Tea Bags
4 lbs. acorn squash (about 4 medium or 2 large), cut in half and seeds removed
¼ cup packed brown sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon salt

Yield: Serves 6

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 400º and place oven rack on middle setting.
  • Spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray and arrange the acorn squash cut-side down on the pan. Bake for 40 minutes, or until flesh is soft. Allow to cool for approximately 15 minutes or until cool enough to handle.
  • Meanwhile, combine hot water and tea bags and allow to steep for 5 minutes. Thoroughly squeeze tea bags and discard. Set aside.
  • Using a spoon, scoop out the flesh of the acorn squash and place in large bowl. Mash with a fork.
  • Add ½ cup of the tea, brown sugar, butter and salt, and stir to combine, making sure the liquid is absorbed. Add more tea (1 tablespoon at a time) if the puree is too stiff.
  • Check seasonings, and add more salt if necessary. Serve hot 

Image (top) via thegreengirls.com and wholefoodsmarket.com