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suggestions for perfect iced tea?

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  • LA May 30, 2005 10:12 PM
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  1. I drink tea all the time. I brew from loose teas and play with types, strengths, brew times... I have a nice Chatsford 6-cup pot, with the built-in strainer. The only difference for iced is that I brew stronger, and then pour into a 2-quart pitcher, then dilute with water or ice, if I'm in a hurry, and put it in the fridge. One of my favorite blends for iced are earl grey/darjeeling. Some oolongs do very well iced. Sencha is very good iced. I also drink mugi-cha (roasted barley) iced during the summer - these are available as pot sized tea bags. Here's a good source for loose teas. They also sell the Chatsford pots (made in Thailand).

    Link: http://www.uptontea.com/

    1 Reply
    1. re: applehome

      I make mine from loose tea sometimes, too. Works out nicely. Other times I use a combo of Red Rose Original and Twinings Earl Grey tea bags. With either loose tea or the tea bags, I use a tea pot & boiling water and let the tea cool off completely before I refigerate it, so it doesn't get cloudy. Depending on what you like, you can add water to dilute the tea.

      Susan

    2. See if you can find Louisianne brand tea. It is blended for icing and does not get cloudy

      1 Reply
      1. re: Candy

        I agree with Candy ... Luzianne tea bags are great for iced tea. I live in FL and can find them easily in our supermarkets but am not sure how readily available they are in the North and West.

      2. I asked a question about iced tea variations, so here's a link to that thread in case you missed it...

        Link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

        1. My southern ex-mother-in-law taught me to make iced tea this way 20 years ago and I've always loved it.

          Boil regular black tea bags in a few cups of water -with or without sugar- for two or three minutes. let sit for a moment while you prepare a pitcher of cold water with ice. Add the boiled concentrate to the cold water and serve or refrigerate.

          This tea is always clear and always tartly refreshing.

          1. Here's what I found to work best: I boil a cup or so of water and then toss in 4-5 teabags (I like the Lipton or the Tetley brands). I also mix in sugar at this time so it can dissolve in the tea, or leave it unsweetened, depending on my mood. Let this sit for about 10-15 minutes. Put the tea (minus the teabags) in your pitcher filled with ice, and add water to your taste. Keep in mind that the ice will keep melting and dilute it more, so if you're not serving it immediately, keep the tea a little stronger.

            1. Sun tea: Put a couple tea bags per quart of water in a big jar. Let sit for a day or so. You can put it in the sun if you like, but it does just as well in the fridge. It's never cloudy and tastes great.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Dorothy

                Oh, and if you like that citrus-spice flavor, Bigelow's Constant Comment tea is good and traditional. You can use it on its own or in combination with "regular" tea.

              2. Add fresh mint leaves with or without lemonade to taste.

                1. I agree with the comments about Luzianne brand tea -it's a bit 'plain' but serves well s a starting point for adding flavors, like lemon, mint, etc. The special version what is made-for iced tea works well. and the big bags make brewing easy. I live in FL and drink a lot of fluids, and I find tea very refreshing compared to overly sweet soft drinks.

                  Here are a couple of iced tea tricks:

                  1. Do not use granulated sugar or sugar substitutes. Instead boil 2 parts water, then add 3 parts sugar and dissolve. This is called 'simple syrup' and is "smoother" than plain sugar. Store in a stopped bottle in the 'fridge.

                  2. To avoid the problem of iced tea getting watered down by the melting of the ice, I make "ice tea cubes" in the ice cube trays, and use them as the "ice". Add the cubes to the drinking glass just before pouring in the brewed tea.

                  3. I brew and store the tea in an all-glass wide mouth jar. The glass doesn't pick up odd odors, and the wide mouth makes it easy to get the tea bags in and out, and to clean

                  4. In FL, sometimes the local water tastes bad (sulfur, etc.), so I use store-bought jug water for coffee, soups and teas.

                  1. I use 2 regular tea bags (National Cup black/orange pekoe tea sold at Wal-Mart @ 98 cents for a box of 100; yes, very cheap but for iced tea, it works great for us...for hot tea, I buy good oolong from Asian grocery store, go figure. I add fresh lemon and sugar to my iced tea so maybe that's why I don't mind using a cheaper black tea for iced tea--the oolong, I drink straight.) in a 2-cup measuring cup of boiling water & let it steep for at least 10 minutes. We love it.

                    1. add boiling water to a big pot that has black or green tea, some slices of fresh ginger, some fresh crushed mint, and some sugar or honey. Let it steep about 5 minutes, then stain and cool (if you like it more gingery, you can keep in the ginger pieces).

                      1. With all the entertaining I do, I've resorted to Cold Brew Lipton Tea Bags. No need to boil water. Pour cold water over the bag and in 3 minutes, you're golden. Works famously...right in the pitchers you want to serve it in. Just wish the strings were longer, though. =].