Many people need a cup of good coffee for a good start into the day. In our case, we definitely need tea. Strong and sweet Assam tea! Typical and traditional "Ostfriesentee" (East-Frisian Tea)! Every morning! Boiling water in the camp early in the morning sometimes can be a really annoying task, especially when you've got to set up the stove et cetera first.
Today, we try a new piece of gear which could simplify this process, the Petromax Feuerkanne fk 2 / Petromax Fire Kettle. Our first impression is that the Fire Kettle is quite big, which actually speaks against adding it to our gear as we need whatever space there is in the Land Rover.
The complete set-up consists of three pieces: the kettle, the fire bowl and an adaptor to add a "normal" kettle or pot on top of the Fire Kettle.
For boiling one litre of water you only need about a handfull of wood. The kettle is double-walled, and so while branches, barks or pine cones burn and crackle in the fire bowl, the heat of the fire goes up through the inside of the kettle and brings the water inside the wall of the Fire Kettle to the boil.
As soon as the water boils, the steam whistle starts whistling. In our case the start temperature of the water is 19.3°Celsius. To bring it to a boil, it takes only 4,5 minutes (our electric water boiler at home needs 3 minutes and 40 seconds). This speed really impresses us! ... At the same time the water in the pot on top of the kettle is heated up to 50°Celsius. If you need the hot water inside the Fire Kettle for making coffee, you can put a pot of milk on top to upgrade the coffee to wonderful latte macchiato.
Thanks to the three feet at the bottom of the fire bowl, the Fire Kettle leaves almost no traces of the fire behind and is steady whatever the surface. As we did not cut the lawn so far this year, minor damage is done to the vegetation.
To sum up, the Petromax Feuerkanne fk 2 / Petromax Fire Kettle is an absolute winner, which definitely is going to travel with us to Africa in spite of it's size as it is really effective! What we still need, though, is a proper bag to put it in, as the insides of both the kettle and the fire bowl become really sooted.