Tuesday, July 27, 2010
There are three ways which I make iced tea: cold brewed, sun tea or regular brewed. The advantages of the first two are that you don't have to boil water and the tea is less acidic when the water isn't hot.
Cold brewed is very simple, but takes longer. Use a clear glass pitcher and completely fill it with filtered water room temp eater. I use a Brita to filter it. Place 2 tea bags in the pitcher and place it in the sun (in a window, on your deck pr porch). Remove the bags when the tea has seeped, probably about 1 hour. Some teas are made especially for brewing this way, but I haven't ever used them. This works with any tea.
Fill your pitcher with water, add the tea bags and leave in your refrigerator over night. In the morning remove the tea bags and your tea is ready.
Boil at least two cups of water, add tea bags and let steep for 5 minutes. Some people add a little soda to remove any bitterness (I don't) at this stage. Remove the tea bags and pour into pitcher. Fill will cold water to immediately cool down. If you are serving immediately you can add ice right to the pitcher to further cool it down. I also make a version of this where I fill up a reusable water bottle and put in a tea bag if I'm going to be out for a awhile. By the time I get the kids soccer practice or the park, I have a lightly brewed tea.
Making Your Iced Tea Special
Regular black iced tea is pretty boring, so I brew up flavorful batches and mix and match the tea bags. All the flavor is great since I don't use any sweetener in it. Here are some of the combos that I like and that get compliments from visitors:
1 Bag Regular Black Tea + 1 Bag Cinnamon Tea
1 Bag Regular Black Tea + 1 Bag Ginger Peach Tea
1 Bag Mint Tea + 1 Bag Green Tea
1 Bag Green Tea + 1 Bag of any fruity tea
I always use just two bags for a whole pitcher. It is nice and light, not too strong but you can certainly add another bag or more. Iced Teas don't keep very long and if you notice it getting cloudy, dump it out and make a new pitcher.