teapigs Blog

we're hiring - join our team!

Posted 16th March 2015 by Louise

we're hiring - join our team!
sales assistant

tea lover required to seek out untapped teapigs sales opportunities and respond to incoming sales enquiries.

We are looking for an enthusiastic, energetic person to extend our distribution in the independent cafe and delicatessen channels.

  • You will be responding to lots of incoming trade enquiries as the first point of contact for all teapigs stockists-to-be.
  • You will head up the 'teapigs out and about plan'.
  • You will seek out new businesses and areas of the independents channel who have not yet discovered the wonders of teapigs.
  • You will be working to a sales target but 'hard sell' is not our style.

You are:

  • Nice (yes!) – you’ll spend a lot of time talking and meeting teapigs customers / potential customers so building relationships will be important.
  • Highly organised – you’ll have a range of office based activities and 'out and about' tasks to juggle at once. Recording information accurately and following up promptly is important.
  • Flexible -You’ll be super keen to get involved with whatever comes your way. Fancy an Underwater tea party with Louis Theoux and Adrian Chiles? ( it happened)

You will be part of a young and busy team in a fast growing friendly business.

Compensation details

£21K + Bonus + Benefits ( health care option/ free tea / weekly fitness classes with England rugby players!)

to apply - send your CV and a covering letter telling us why you'd like the job to rachel@teapigs.co.uk

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A Day in the Life of a Hummingbird Baker

Posted 5th March 2015 by Amy

A Day in the Life of a Hummingbird Baker

There are dream jobs out there and cupcake maker has to be up there. Abbigail makes cupcakes for Hummingbird bakery who we think make some of the best cupcakes in London. They’re famous for their red velvet cupcake which you HAVE to try if you haven’t already. They have 6 stores in London and you can have a cup of teapigs there too.

Abbigail has given us a behind the scenes interview, a day in the life of humming bird cupcake maker.. oh and they will be making a cupcake using our very own chai tea this month. You have to go and try it.

 “Our working day begins early, around the time most people are hitting the snooze button on their alarm. And by the time most people are sleepily making themselves their first cup of coffee of the day, we're already surrounded by the aromas of freshly baked cupcakes. 6.30am isn't too early for a cupcake is it?!

The first job of the day is to divvy up all of the day’s tasks between the kitchen staff. Then, like a well-oiled machine, we set straight to work. One person starts by ‘scooping’ (TOP TIP ALERT: this is when we use an individual food portioner or scoop to put the same amount of cupcake batter into each cupcake case). Doing this ensures that each cupcake is the same size. These cupcakes are baked, cooled and then we decorate them, making sure they've all got the same amount of frosting and all have a perfectly formed swirl on top! This is the signature look of a Hummingbird Bakery cupcake. 

While the cupcakes are being prepared we're also busy getting all of the cakes ready for the shop and for the customer orders. All of the cakes get frosted and finished, each with their own personalised messages, ready for that unsuspecting someone that deserves an extra special treat - we take care of them all!

It's nearly 9am and all of the cupcakes, cakes and tray bakes are in the shop ready to be sold. Rows of Red Velvet cupcakes sit proudly on their trays ready for the first customers of the day. Our Rainbow Cakes stand tall and grand, waiting to make someone’s day quite a bit brighter. Then the doors to the branch are opened and we scurry back to the kitchen to continue our work.

The next job of the day is making fresh cake batters and preparing and baking the brownies, frosted brownies, cheesecakes and whoopie pies. The pace of things will usually slow down a little at this point except on special occasions, like Valentine's Day, when we really get to work! On days like these thousands of handmade decorations need cutting out, cake boxes need putting together and the huge number of orders we have to work through puts the crowded kitchen into overdrive.  When operating at full capacity, our finishing time can easily extend from the normal time of about 3 or 4pm until late into the night.  These days feel like a sprint finish but the buzz in the kitchen is fantastic and we all pull together to make sure each and every order is perfect.

When the end of the day comes, whether its 3pm or 11pm, we always finish off by scrubbing the kitchen down ready for another action packed day of baking. Being a Hummingbird Baker is a sometimes hectic and high-pressured experience but it is ultimately a highly rewarding job. Walking through the shop at the end of a shift and seeing customers happily munching on our cakes makes the early start and the icing in the hair completely worthwhile. It’s not everyone who can say their work brings smiles to faces of hundreds of people each and every day.”

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How to make the perfect every day cuppa

Posted 5th March 2015 by Louise

How to make the perfect every day cuppa

We want everyone to drink real tea and enjoy drinking real tea. So, we’ve come up with a list of 7 basic rules for making the perfect cup of tea, every time.

Rule 1

Only ever use freshly drawn water

It might be a while since you’ve drawn any water from a well, if ever, but when we say ‘freshly drawn water’ what we mean is water straight from the tap. Leaving water in the kettle and boiling it over and over again will make the tea taste ‘flat’. 

Rule 2

Heat the water to the correct temperature

Too hot? Too cold? Ah, just right! If Goldilocks liked tasting tea, she’d surely have something to say about the temperature of the water you use to brew tea. And we do too, and it depends on what tea you’re drinking.

Black tea needs boiling water and that means 100°C/212°F.

Rule 3

Only ever use quality tea

This is a biggie (particularly for us). A nice cuppa comes from brewing nice tea leaves. Don’t scrimp when it comes to the quality of the tea. Your taste buds will thank you for it.

Rule 4

Use just the right amount of water

In technical terms, this is the ‘tea to water ratio’ – it’s easy to go wrong on this one. Obviously, a gallon of water and one tea leaf won’t make a great brew. So use one tea temple (or tea bag or 1 teaspoon of leaf tea) per person. When we’re making tea temples, we weight out just enough tea to work with 300ml (10fl oz) of water. If you were to put a tea temple into a pot for two then of course it will taste weak. An average-sized mug filled with water with one tea temple is the ideal ratio. 

Rule 5

Brew for 3 minutes
Quality tea has big leaves (rather than dusty sweepings off the floor!) and so they need a good brew time. Don’t dunk and run. It takes time – 3 minutes, on average – for the tea leaves to infuse and release their flavour into the water.

Rule 6

Warm the pot

This really does make a difference if you are making black tea. There is simply no point in putting boiling water into a freezing-cold teapot, it just lowers the temperature of the water straightaway – think of it like putting hot food on a cold plate – plus, the taste won’t be half as good. Whether or not you want to go and keep your teapot all cosy with a knitted cover is another thing; though, there’s no harm in that.

Rule 7

Enjoy the yummy tea

Allow the brew to cool – once the tea has been separated from the water it is good to let it cool a little. Not only will piping hot water burn your mouth, but it will also stop you from tasting the yummy tea flavours you have just been brewing. If you are brewing in a pot and are pouring into a cup – put the milk in first then add the brewed tea.

If you are brewing in a mug – pour the milk in second after the tea leaves or tea bag has been removed. 

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An update from Rwanda

Posted 5th March 2015 by Rosie

An update from Rwanda

We have supported the Noel Orphanage in Gisenyi, Rwanda since we launched teapigs 8 years ago. The orphanage used to sit opposite the tea plantation from which we source a lot of the tea for our everyday brew. The Rwandan government’s reunification policy has been aiming for a number of year to place the children in the country’s many orphanages back in to their communities and now all of the orphanages are closed or closing.

Whilst this is happy news for many orphans who have found new homes, there’s still lots of work to be done to help support the children themselves and the families and communities that give them a home. There’s also little support for disabled children in Rwanda and we’re working with the Point Foundation to help in both these areas.

The biggest problems facing these children and young adults are; being placed in homes that struggle to support them; being considered the head of house (in the case of older children) and becoming responsible for supporting younger relatives at too early an age and living with disabilities.

Here’s how we’re helping the Point Foundation:

sponsoring students

Our donations help fund students through university (fees and accommodation) and put young adults who missed out back in to education. We’re helping to liff the financial burden but give them hope for a prosperous future. We’re sponsoring 22 students and will keep you updated on their progress!

disability program

Our support goes towards the housing, day to day care and specialist disability care for disabled orphans who can’t be re-housed. The Point Foundation are in the process of purchasing dedicated housing and specialist care for these children to ensure they have a long term care solution.

It’s a really busy and complicated time in Rwanda at the moment, and the Point Foundation are doing lots of great work in providing day to day care for vulnerable young people and working with the government to build more long term solutions. We’ll be sure to keep you updated as often as possible on their progress and how your donations are helping… and they really are helping. THANK YOU for your continued support!

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We have JOMO fever

Posted 27th February 2015 by Becky

We have JOMO fever

Have you heard of The Fear of Missing out? Checking your instagram and thinking everyone is having loads of fun without you on a yacht in Monaco, or sat in the frow at London Fashion week, or eating macaroons in Paris whilst you are at home doing the washing up? Well, forget all that and turn your attention to the JOY of Missing Out.

Staying in really is awesome, and if you’re by yourself than even better because you can do whatever you please! The teapigs girls have been having a think about what we love to do most at home guilt free:

Juliana: I am a pinterest maniac. And I’m obsessed with surfing the internet and bookmarking clothes and books I want to buy. That, and watching Regular Show and Adventure time with lots of cake (that I obviously bought as I have zero baking talent)

Becky: Oh my, staying in is the best. A workout, followed by a bath every night whilst watching beauty vloggers on youtube, usually with some weird homemade face mask made out of avocado on. Then a highbrow evening of old TOWIE episodes and some property programme found lurking on More 4.

Sarah: I LOVE binge watching TV Shows. I was off work yesterday and spent about 4 hours watching Homeland. I regret nothing. This a recurring habit, I once spent my summer watching The Wire and The Sopranos back to back and forgot how to communicate properly with people. Otherwise its an evening in spending waaaaay too much time watching Youtube or trawling Etsy

Valerie: I could easily spend the whole day doing tapestry (very relaxing) but I also love painting furniture and framing up all the paintings I’ve bought whilst traveling

Rachel: Aaah fear of missing out is so relevant when you’re saving for a house and wedding.. waaah. But ultimately I’m a lazy bum so also v happy to stay at home in my PJ’s. I love to try to paint my nails in really cool designs – fail miserably, keep trying, eventually give up paint all nails the same colour. I’m also always keen to play a few tricks on the fiancé – hide behind doors/in cupboards and jump out. Put on masks and creep into rooms, you know, just normal stuff. Failing that, box set marathons are pretty much my favourite activity and BOOOOKS. All the books please.

Sofia: love love love dancing round my room. Or spending hours watching Gray’s Anatomy!!

Well, that’s our Friday night sorted Let us know in the comments below your favourite joy of missing out!

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