Iced Tea recipes to keep cool?
It's that time of year again...the time when I constantly have a pitcher of iced tea in my fridge to quench my thirst and curb my habit for diet soda. Also great non-alcoholic beverage to serve to guests. I generally don't like to do anything too fancy w/ my tea, but I'm starting to get bored w/ the basic.
My basic recipe: I use 2 family-size black tea bags from Trader Joe's for the base; steep for 10 min. in small pot of just boiled water. Remove bags and add about 1/3 c. of sugar to the hot steeped tea. Let it cool. Then add cold water to make one large pitcherful of iced tea. I usually add lemon and/or mint to each glass right before serving.
My ginger-infused variation: Make a simple syrup of sugar, water, and ginger. Let that gently simmer on stove til ginger really infuses sugar water. Add to black tea.
So...what are your favorite iced tea concoctions out there? Something I can have for everyday or serve to guests. I'm open to mixing w/ juices, liquer, or other flavors. THANKS!
See if you can get your hands on a bottle of Marco Polo blackberry syrup. It's along the lines of Torani, but all natural, made with juice and sugar, not corn syrup. Leave the sugar out of your pitcher of tea, and add some syrup to your individual glassful. Not too sweet and a really nice flavor combo with the tea.
Another thing you can do for something refreshing is to not add the cold water to dilute your brewed tea, and instead add cold seltzer when you're ready to drink it, for "sparkling" tea.
I sometimes use blackcurrant tea (Twining's), for a nice floral aroma and subtle flavor that's good with mint.
Use Drambui to sweeten your black tea when you're in the mood for a little alchohol.
Also, I've enjoyed an herbal tea from fresh lemon verbena leaves and Honey to sweeten. Very slight flavor like a green tea as compared to a black tea. Good for those times you don't want the caffeine.
Fresh, but sugar macerated, raspberries are good with a strong tea (like your Black Tea). Crushed, they are kind of rustic looking. Some people don't like that. But, I like the flavor.
Oceanspray Cranberry/raspberry juice is good in a strong tea with honey.
And, peach nectar is tea is good also.
And, a dab of vanilla with orange juice is good in tea.
And, I had a really tasty Iced Chai Tea at Starbucks the other day. Lots of recipes for Chai tea. You have to make it hot and then cool it though, for all flavors to infuse. Here's one good recipe:
1-1/2 cups water
1 inch stick of cinnamon
8 cardomom pods
8 whole cloves
2/3 cup milk
6 tsp. sugar (or to taste)
3 teaspoons any unperfumed loose black tea