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Family, Joe Torre and Bigelow Tea, A Perfect Combination!

Family is super important to Bigelow Tea. After all, without the love and support and commitment of the Bigelow family, Bigelow Tea wouldn’t exist! For over 70 years, the family-owned company has shared milestones and moments with tea lovers around the world. And, sometimes, those moments come from common experiences. Take Joe Torre – former baseball player, manager of the New York Yankees, Baseball Hall of Famer, and Bigelow Tea friend – for instance. Joe Torre has been an avid Bigelow green tea drinker for years, but it was something completely unrelated to tea that forged a special friendship with the Bigelow family. It was the dreaded c-word: cancer. Today is all about sharing three important reasons why Bigelow Tea wants you to learn more about prostate cancer. And Joe Torre has joined the conversation, too (check out the video!).

Why talk about prostate cancer on the Bigelow Tea blog? Well, this is a subject close to our hearts.  For the Bigelow family, prostate cancer was personal. When David Bigelow – son of Bigelow Tea founder Ruth Campbell Bigelow, co-chairman of the company, and father to president and CEO Cindi Bigelow – was diagnosed with prostate cancer years ago, it wasn’t a comfortable topic for most people – and to be fair, it still isn’t for many. Following his successful cancer battle, he read an article in the New York Times about Joe Torre’s experience with prostate cancer, and it inspired David to write a letter to all Bigelow Tea employees encouraging them to get an exam. Even though that was quite some time ago, it’s still important that we spread awareness and encourage all men to get an exam and stay on top of their prostate health.

Incidentally, Joe Torre is also a strong advocate for prostate cancer awareness and research. He’s spoken on behalf of the Prostate Cancer Foundation, especially during their annual Home Run Challenge to raise money. We’re proud to have Joe Torre on our team when it comes to sharing these personal stories as a way to help others.

And now, read on for these three reasons to learn more about prostate cancer:

  1. One in nine men will get diagnosed with prostate cancer. Other than skin cancer, it’s the most common cancer in American men. It’s easy to see how those odds stack up, and why it’s so important to stay informed.
  2. Prostate cancer is curable. One big reason it’s so important to catch prostate cancer is that if it’s detected early, it can be cured. Unfortunately, because it’s an awkward subject, it can be easy to put it off until it’s too late. All the more reason to face it head on and beat it early.
  3. The average age of diagnosis is 66. A lot of people think of prostate cancer as an old man’s disease, but 66 isn’t old these days. Stopping this cancer early can be the difference of many years or decades, so please take it seriously.

Plus, studies have shown that antioxidants that naturally occur in green tea are reported to help neutralize the free radicals that are linked to the development of cancer. These potent antioxidants provide medicinal powers that boast an array of health-promoting properties. So, a cup of green tea can’t hurt, right!?

Chances are, there’s a man in your life who might be hesitant to talk about this serious issue. But if Joe Torre can talk to the country about it, you can chat it out over a cup of tea. Regular exams and early detection are the best defense, and Bigelow Tea encourages every man out there to get checked. You’re too important – and so are the men in your family – not to take this seriously. From our family to yours, be well, stay informed and get checked!

This Is Why Bigelow Tea Loves The Stars From The Crown

The Crown is one of those TV shows everyone can’t seem to get enough of—especially everyone at Bigelow Tea. Telling the story of England’s longest-reigning monarch from her coronation onward, the show gives you a glimpse into Buckingham Palace in the mid 20th century. And when it comes to the Royals, who doesn’t love to hear more?? From the traditions to the outfits to the relationships to afternoon tea, it’s an experience that evokes Great Britain through and through.

And what is better than afternoon tea? Apparently, not much, as Netflix UK & Ireland got hold of The Crown’s lead actors, Claire Foy and Matt Smith to ask them about how they take their tea. If you haven’t watched the video yet – if you’d like a bit of fun – go through these questions for yourself and see how your answers line up* with the actors portraying Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip.

  1. How many hours do/can you go without tea?
  2. If you had to choose: English Breakfast or Earl Grey?
  3. Do you go for a teacup or mug for your tea?
  4. Which goes in your cup first: the milk or the tea?

Enjoy and don’t forget to tag #TeaProudly to share how you like your tea!

*Listen, like all of us, Claire and Matt have some strongly-held opinions about their tea, so if your answers don’t match, don’t take it to heart. You’re still #TeaProudly royalty to us.

This Is Why Bigelow Hot Cinnamon Tea Is Perfect

Attention, attention: calling all hot tea lovers: turn the spice up a notch with a cup of Bigelow Hot Cinnamon tea. We took a rich, bold black tea and blended it with spicy cinnamon to create the perfect brew to warm you up all the way down to your toes. And no one is exaggerating when they say it’s got a bit of a kick – after all, it is the spice of intrigue!

Despite its widespread use throughout the ancient world, cinnamon didn’t arrive to Europe until after the Middle Ages. Actually, it was known to be the Arab merchants’ best-kept secret until the early 16th century. To keep their monopoly on the cinnamon trade and justify its high price, traders would tell tales to their buyers about where and how they obtained the luxurious spice. One documented story claimed that enormous birds carried the cinnamon sticks to their nests high atop mountains that were insurmountable by any human and could only be gotten when the nests broke. Another tall tale claimed that cinnamon was found in deep canyons guarded by snakes.

In the New World, Christopher Columbus searched for it (and didn’t find it – only tree bark) and Gonzalo Pizarro, a Spanish explorer, sought cinnamon in the Americas, traversing the Amazon hoping to find the “pais de la canela,” or “cinnamon country.”

These days, cinnamon is making some history of its own as the leading ingredient in this amazing tea. With its natural spice and a mix of sweetness, it’s the perfect way to take the chill out of a cool night or to add some zip to your day.

Whatever its history, we’re stoked that cinnamon is a part of our present so #TeaProudly people and enjoy a mug today!

Healthy, Hearty Comfort Food Made With Bigelow Tea

Oh winter – chilly, windy, generally unpleasant… there seems to be no end in sight! And we know a thing or two about winter woes here in our New England town of Fairfield, Connecticut, but we also know some of the best ways to combat the cold whether it’s a hot mug of tea to warm your body, mind and soul or an amazing recipe made with Bigelow Tea Check out some of these fave recipes and try one tonight….take a pic, tag it #TeaProudly so we can share in the fun!

Pork, Fennel and Leek Casserole

Fennels and leeks don’t get their deserved due in the veggie world, but they are often paired in culinary creations as the result of their complementary flavors, and both add beneficial fiber, vitamins and antioxidant polyphenols to our diet.  The bold, fruity, spicy taste of “Constant Comment” tea adds a kick to this flavorful recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (250mL) chicken stock
  • 1 cup (250mL) water
  • 8 Bigelow “Constant Comment” Tea Bags
  • ¾ cup (180mL) boiling water
  • ¾ cup (180mL) apple juice
  • 1 tablespoon (15mL) butter
  • 1 small fennel bulb
  • 3 leeks, cleaned, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 1 pound (500g) pork tenderloin, cut into medallions
  • ¼ cup (60mL) flour
  • 1 tablespoon (15mL) olive oil
  • 1 – 10 ounces (280g) package of frozen peas
  • 12 mini potatoes, unpeeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 tablespoons (30mL) cornstarch
  • ½ cup (125mL) mint leaves, chopped

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Make “Constant Comment” tea with ¾ cup (180mL) boiling water, discard the tea bags, squeezing to extract as much liquid as possible. Add chicken stock and set aside. Melt butter in large skillet and add fennel and leeks and saute gently for 4-5 minutes or until soft, don’t brown. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. Add pork to large plastic bag; add flour, season with salt and pepper, and toss until pork is well coated. Add olive oil to large skillet and brown the pork in batches over medium heat. Remove pork and add apple juice, increase heat and stir up the brown bits from the bottom. Add the tea mixture and boil, add pork, fennel, leeks and potatoes. Cover and place in oven. Cook for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and add peas, mix cornstarch with a little cold water to make a paste and add slowly to hot liquid. Return to oven and continue cooking until sauce thickens. Season with salt and pepper if needed and garnish with chopped

I Love Lemon Chicken Casserole

Protein rich beans and chicken, veggies and a unique lemon / pepper flavor combo make for a spicy, rich, warm-you-to-the-toes dish.  Bigelow’s I Love Lemon tea adds a wonderful zing for sure.

Ingredients

  • 8 tea bags of I Love Lemon Herbal Tea
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, whole, cracked
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 pounds chicken breast, 1″ cubed
  • 4 ounces Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 8 ounces onion, diced
  • 4 ounces celery, diced
  • 7 ounces Poblano Pepper, diced
  • 5 ounces red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 cups corn, fresh or frozen
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • 16 ounces beans, fresh cooked or canned
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

Instructions

Heat saute pan and add oil.Toss chicken in flour until coated and shake off excess.  Sear chicken on all sides and remove from pan reserving oil in pan. Sweat garlic, onion and celery.  Add peppers and sweat.  Add corn and spices. Cover with chicken stock and add tea bags.  Bring to a simmer and add beans. Let simmer for one hour and adjust seasoning as necessary. Remove tea bags, stir in fresh cilantro and serve.

Moroccan Lentil Stew with Cinnamon

(Pictured Above)

Rock your dinner tonight with this exotic flavor celebration. Cinnamon, in the form of Bigelow Cinnamon Stick tea, is the star of this dish.  Satisfying lentils and chicken and germ fighting garlic and onions make for a powerhouse meal.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups hot water
  • 4 Bigelow® Cinnamon Stick® Tea Bags
  • ½ lb. dried brown lentils, rinsed well
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 lbs chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 – 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes in sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ cup dry roasted almonds, roughly chopped
  • 3 tablespoon Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped

Instructions

Combine four cups hot water and four Cinnamon Stick® tea bags and allow to steep for approximately 5-7 minutes. Add tea and lentils to a large stew pot. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for approximately 20 minutes, or until lentils are tender. Remove to a large bowl and set aside. In the same pot, add olive oil and saute onions and garlic until softened. Add cut-up chicken and cook until cooked through and no longer pink inside (about 10 minutes). Add diced tomatoes and cooked lentils to the pan and heat through. Season with salt and pepper. Add chopped almonds and parsley and serve.

3 Remarkable Facts About Bigelow Tea Founder, Ruth Campbell Bigelow

Guess what today is?? It’s the birthday of founder Ruth Campbell Bigelow who started family-owned Bigelow Tea. The #TeaProudly community are celebrating big by honoring her amazing entrepreneurial spirit that built this third generation family owned business into a legacy and the largest specialty tea company in the United States!  Check out these three amazing facts that give some insight into how Ruth did it all.

1. Ruth was an interior designer by trade, but in 1945, she put her creative energies toward formulating “Constant Comment” in the kitchen of her New York City brownstone. After weeks of trial and error, blending black tea with orange rind and sweet spices, she emerged with the first cup of specialty tea in the country, and Bigelow Tea was born!

2. Ruth’s special tea even got mentions in the New York Times and Gourmet magazine! (Talk about #TeaProudly!)  Food writer Jane Holt wrote about the newly introduced tea on May 21, 1945, calling it “unusual,” “delicious,” “concentrated,” and “economical.”

In the July 1945 issue of Gourmet, prominent food writer Clementine Paddleford told the story of how “Constant Comment” got its name:

“One of Mrs. Bigelow’s friends was giving an afternoon party, and it was suggested she try the new blend. Not a word was said to the guests regarding its novelty, yet everyone spoke of the tea’s aroma, its flavor—there was “constant comment.” A good name, why not? Labels were made and the tea was hurried to the stores, where it is selling at around 75 cents for the two-and-one-quarter ounce jar.”

3. According to NPR, songwriter Leonard Cohen even included Ruth’s marvelous tea in his song “Suzanne” with these lyrics:

“and she feeds you tea and oranges that come all the way from China” 

When asked about this line, he said: “She fed me a tea called Constant Comment, which has small pieces of orange rind in it, which gave birth to the image.”  (Pretty cool, huh?!)

It’s All About Family, Giving Back, and of course, Tea!

There’s no denying that “Constant Comment” was and is a big deal; and family-owned Bigelow Tea has expanded tremendously since then with over 150 flavors! Ruth’s son David and his wife Eunice, as co-Chairs, have lead the company with integrity, passion, thoughtfulness and a spirit of determination. They are still the only ones who know the secret recipe for Ruth’s aromatic tea blend. (Mmmmm!)  And although she passed away in 1966, Ruth Campbell Bigelow’s tenacity and generosity shines on today in her granddaughter, president and CEO Cindi Bigelow. Cindi is not only passionate about tea and has driven the company to great success, but she is deeply committed to promoting sustainability, community and supporting our troops around the globe. She’s proud to be a part of a family-run, inclusive company that believes in kindness!

So, tea lovers, brew yourself a mug of delicious “Constant Comment,” kick back and ponder the life of this tenacious, generous and pioneering woman who created the first American specialty tea. If that’s not a reason to drink a mug to #TeaProudly, what is?

This Is Why Bigelow Tea Is A Go-To For Fab Tanya Rad!

What’s the best way to start your day? Well, if you’re up and at ‘em before 5:00 a.m. like Tanya Rad, it’s with a huge glass of water in one hand and a mug of Bigelow Tea green tea in the other. As the co-host on Ryan Seacrest’s morning show, “On Air With Ryan” on 102.7 KIIS FM Los Angeles’ Hit Music radio station, Tanya’s alarm goes off bright and early so that she can bring the people of Los Angeles and those tuned in worldwide some solid tunes (and humor!).

But, if you spend a bit of time with Tanya, you’ll know that the water and tea go beyond staying hydrated. Tanya is truly committed to leading a healthy lifestyle, and those early morning beverages are a great way to keep accountable throughout the day. Here are a few other tips for living your best – and healthiest – life!

  1. Make your bed. As the first task of the day, it’s a good feeling to get it done.
  2. As mentioned, start your morning off with a nice, tall glass of ice water – maybe add some lemon!
  3. While you’re sipping, start the teapot and brew yourself a cup of green tea.
  4. Schedule your day out. Take a few minutes to jot out your priorities or to-do list. It’s a great way to chart out your day and an even better way to jumpstart the productivity.
  5. On the go? Busy work day ahead? Pack your lunch! Stick to healthy habits by bringing your own food to the office.
  6. Let the natural light in. Open your blinds, soak in the sunshine. That Vitamin D is amazing.
  7. Exercise! Move your body! Wake it up!
  8. Get your thinking cap on! Read the newspaper. Or have a chat with a loved one on your commute. We also love podcasts – one of our favorites is “Tea Time with Tanya.”

In the end, living your best life is all about finding what makes you happy and makes you feel fulfilled. You can get together with friends and chat out some of your favorite habits, or do your research on blogs, Instagram and Pinterest for new ideas. But ultimately, you have to be true to yourself and do what feels right to you. After all, when we say #TeaProudly, being proud of who you are is a huge part of that.

Photos by Tanya Rad

This Is What We Do To Stay Well And Be Happy!

Looking to stay well every day? It’s understandable, especially when we’re still in the throes of cold and flu season. But don’t let that get you down. Look no further than Bigelow Tea Benefits Stay Well! Each cup offers the delicious flavors of lemon and Echinacea – two super duper ingredients that will rock your world! A cup of this yummy tea is the perfect way to support your health.

Though it’s often just “that sour fruit,” the lemon is actually pretty versatile and has been a go-to ingredient throughout history. Many say it was used as a remedy for epilepsy, a toothpaste, invisible ink and even a bleaching agent. Lemons’ origins are said to have come from the base of the Himalayan Mountains, but these days, they’re cultivated in tropical and temperate climates around the world, with California leading production in the United States.

It’s probably no surprise that lemons provide a lot of vitamin C, but they are also a good source of iron, fiber, vitamin B6, calcium, and copper, as well as folate and potassium. Research has suggested that lemons may even help with DNA cell protection, immune system regulation and inflammation relief. So when life gives you lemons, use ‘em like we do in over twenty-three tea flavors!

Echinacea, on the other hand, got its start a little closer to home. It’s native to the plains of North America, and doesn’t grow wild anywhere else in the world (wild child!). It is cultivated across the globe though, especially in the United States and Europe.

Echinacea got its name from an 18th century German botanist, Conrad Moench, who named the plant after the Greek word echinos, meaning hedgehog. This is probably because of the spiny round seedhead on the plant. In addition to its nutritional properties, Echinacea also grow beautiful, daisy-like purple flowers. Its popularity has also led to concerns about overharvesting, and wild Echinacea is a protected species. We want this plant that keeps us well to stay healthy as well, after all!

Bigelow Benefits Stay Well is like an action duo of feeling good. The powerful partnership of these two terrific ingredients means you get an abundance of benefits in every cup. And with an amazing floral and citrus flavor, it’s a perfect way to sit, savor and center yourself. Or you can share some time with friends or family over a cup, and #TeaProudly with this incredible combination — supporting wellness and full of teatime goodness. Cheers!

Sick Of Cold & Flu Season? Bigelow Tea Is Good For What Ails You.

Brrrr! It’s cold out and all of a sudden…..aaaaah-choo!  (On no!) Unfortunately, cold and flu season is here and sometimes, no matter how hard you try, there’s no avoiding getting sick. But check out the #TeaProudly community who know what’s up when it comes to staving off those winter sniffles!  On Twitter @Crystalball1976 says: @bigelowtea Thank you–your tea is helping me out right now….. early stages of a cold. Hope I caught it in time by drinking lots of mint tea!” #TeaProudly

What can we do?  Check out these helpful tips which might just help you proactively survive the winter:

  1. Wash your hands. Viruses and bacteria spread when those who are infected cough, sneeze, or blow their nose. (ewww!) It’s a good idea to wash your hands frequently year-round, but during cold and flu season it is an absolute must. Carry a small container of hand sanitizer with you just in case you don’t have access to soap and water.
  2. Keep it clean! Clean and disinfect surfaces such as tables, countertops and doorknobs at home, work or school, especially when someone is ill.
  3. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. If you know someone at work or school who isn’t feeling well, steer clear and maintain limited contact until they’re better. It’s nothing personal—you need to stay healthy!
  4. Eat (and drink!) a healthy diet. Foods containing vitamins C and E are believed to be helpful in supporting the immune system. Sunflower seeds, almonds and spinach are all rich in vitamin E, and you can get your daily vitamin C from foods like citrus fruits, strawberries, broccoli and tomatoes, so bring on those fruits and veggies, yeah! Researchers at Harvard University also found that drinking five cups of black tea a day quadrupled the body’s immune defense system after two weeks, probably because of theanine, a powerful little amino acid found in both black and green tea.
  5. Get a good night’s rest. Getting enough sleep can keep you from feeling run-down and help you maintain a healthy immune system. Try some soothing and relaxing like Chamomile Vanilla Herbal Tea with Honey as a yummy after-dinner treat—it may help you unwind and get the zzzzzz’s you need.

And how about these tips if you (OH NO!) come down with something:

  1. Stay hydrated. Increasing your fluid intake when you’re sick prevents dehydration, which can be caused by fever, coughing and sneezing.  Warm liquids (like tea!) may soothe a sore, scratchy throat and help to thin mucus. According to ear, nose and throat specialist Murray Grossan, MD; drinking tea and breathing in steam also stimulates the cilia—the hair follicles in the nose—to move out germs more efficiently. Buh-bye!
  2. If you’re sick, stay home. If you have the flu or a bad cold, take some time off from work or school. Not only do you need to rest, if you’re out and about when you’re sick, you could infect others. Elderly people, children and those with weakened immune systems can develop very serious illnesses if exposed to the cold or flu virus.
  3. Take it easy. Expending energy saps valuable resources from your immune system, so take a time-out when you’re sick. Nap, read, binge-watch that show you’ve been meaning to get to (yay!), and sip a soothing cup of Benefits Lemon and  Echinacea Herbal Tea, but take it easy so you can get back on your feet as soon as possible.

Have any tips on staying healthy this winter? Tag #TeaProudly to share your remedies!

Times Change, But Bigelow Teas Don’t – That’s #TeaProudly!

Listen up, tea lovers. If you haven’t joined the Bigelow Tea #TeaProudly community (you qualify if you love tea!), now’s the time. Why? Because drinking tea is warm and cozy; it soothes souls, connects people, invites conversation and makes memories. This, we believe, is something to talk about…something to share. #TeaProudly is the best place to be and now you can learn more from the top of our tea boxes. Yup, the next time you pick out your fave flavors, you’ll notice something a bit different and we hope you love it as much as we do!

So, what exactly did we do? A #TeaProudly update, of course, on the top of our boxes. And that is not all you will find on our tea boxes, you’ll see stories on the lid of the box, photos, easy to read listed ingredients and #TeaProudly messages on each tea tag. Because, hey, the times (and packaging) may change, but our delicious tea won’t! Check out new packaging for the following flavors: “Constant Comment®”, Earl Grey, English Teatime, Green Tea, Green Tea with Lemon, Mint Medley, and Cozy Chamomile.

Obviously, you all know what #TeaProudly is by now, but just in case you don’t (hey, new tea drinkers!), here’s how it works. We all love tea, right? And along with our passion (yours and ours!), is the fun we all have in sharing what’s important. Because who doesn’t love to talk about favorite tea flavors, awesome mugs, cool tea memories with friends and family, and any other time tea has rocked our world?!

See one of our new packages on your next shopping trip? Snap a pic and share it on social media with #TeaProudly!

This is How to Brew the Perfect Cup of Tea

Have you ever wondered what makes tea sooooooo tasty? For three generations, Bigelow Tea has been crafting deliciously different teas using quality handpicked teas and herbs from the world’s finest gardens. (Yum!) While premium ingredients are essential for a great cup of tea, the way you brew your tea also has a huge impact on how it tastes. Just follow these four easy steps and you’ll be on your way to a perfect, consistent cup every time. (Yay!)

  1. You may think using the leftover water in your tea kettle is no big deal. (It is!) Fresh, cold water is vital to making an amazing cup of tea. Before filling the tea kettle, let the cold tap water run for 30 seconds. This aerates the water– the oxygen in the water opens up the tea leaf, extracting all its incredible flavors. If you prefer bottled water, even better–give it a shake to aerate the water before heating. If you’re using a teapot, here’s a tip to improve aeration– take the chill off by rinsing it first with hot water.
  2. Before you pour, put the tea bag of your choice in a cup or mug. Different types of tea have different ideal brewing temperatures that yield the best flavor for that specific tea. (Wow, who knew?!) For black, oolong, herbal and rooibos teas, bring water to a rolling boil, then immediately pour over tea. For delicate green teas, bring water just to the point where tiny bubbles begin to form, and then pour over tea.
  3. Steeping times also vary for different types of tea. (Tick-tock!) Ideal steeping time for black tea is about 2-4 minutes, green tea 1-3 minutes, and herbal teas 4 minutes or more. Here’s another fun fact—covering your mug while the tea steeps keeps it warm and seals in all the yummy tea goodness.  If you forget how much time to steep, take a peek at your box of Bigelow Tea! You’ll find recommended brew times right on the packaging.
  4. If you’re working on creating a perfect cup of tea—don’t squeeze the tea bag!  Squeezing the tea bag will put bitter tannins into the cup–yuck! And who wants to burn their fingers while trying to enjoy a comforting mug of tea, right?!

Now that you’ve brewed a beautiful cup of tea, feel free to get creative! Some Bigelow Tea lovers like to add milk, honey, sugar or a slice of lemon. (Yum!)  Check out the video below featuring Bigelow Tea’s third- generation president and CEO Cindi Bigelow to get a step-by-step look at how she brews the perfect cup of tea. Give Cindi’s technique a try and tag #TeaProudly to share your delicious results!