Tea is what I ask for whenever I visit a restaurant in town on a cold evening. With the weather in Nairobi being chilly even as you read this article, the only logical choice for beating the cold is a warm cup of delicious tea.

It’s how most of Kenyans have been raised. They love their tea brewed to perfection and accompanied with mandazi or chapati. However, not all of us know the other DIY uses that tea has. That sweet scent can be put into a number of uses. These include:

1. Adding flavour to rice

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You read that right. Tea can be used to flavour other foods. For rice, all you need to do is hang pre-brewed tea bags in a pot of boiling water. Remove the tea bags and add the rice into the flavoured water. This gives your food a lovely taste that you’ll not get enough of! Try out different flavours of the Kenyan tea, which could be Cinnamon, Ginger or Caramel.

2. Rust proof kitchenware

Are you tired of having to scrub your cookware to remove rust every now and then? Here’s how tea comes in handy. Once you have washed your utensils, rub them with wet used tea bags. The tannins produced by the tea will coat the surface of your kitchenware to prevent oxidation. That is another problem solved!

3. Removing stench from fridge

Nobody wants a smelly fridge in their kitchen. It can be a headache, especially if you don’t know the solution. Well, once again, tea comes to the rescue! Just place a few used tea bags in an open container in your fridge. They will soak up the unwanted smell and leave your fridge fresh. This serves as a perfect alternative to baking soda.

4. Degrease dishes

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Another DIY tip that will help you make your dishes sparkly is putting two to three used tea bags in your sink containing dirty dishes and warm water. Leave them for five minutes. The tea breaks down the grease and food stains, saving the hard scrubbing you would have done. Thank me later.

5. Cleaning glass

Tired of the chemical smell that hangs around once you clean your mirrors and windows at home? Tea serves as a more organic cleaning solution. Just wipe your windows with wet used tea bags. Dry them with a soft cloth or paper towel. The tannic acid in them will give you amazing results; the crystal clear window you wanted.

Happening this weekend is the African Tea Convention and Exhibition Conference. The global event brings together a host of international industry experts, agriculture input suppliers, practitioners, researchers and scholars, financiers and investors, tea packers, retailers and many other people from the tea trade industry.

They will be interacting and discussing how to make the tea business sustainable; indeed it is an important factor in the Kenyan economy.

Be sure to celebrate tea as this auspicious event takes place. You can take your friend, girlfriend or anyone you treasure out for tea! Happy tea drinking!