Tea is a British pastime. It is served at all times of day, for all emotional and physical needs, and even as it’s own meal category. But one thing that I notice is that there is a lack of the American favourite iced tea.
Perhaps tea purists would argue that iced tea goes against the proper way to brew the leaves to prevent bitter flavour or some rubbish like that. But I believe that on a warm day, much like the ones we will hopefully have all summer long, there is nothing more refreshing than a glass of icy cold tea. Except perhaps one that has been mixed with something a bit stronger.
…for mere pennies you have a great drink or cocktail mixer.
To make iced tea at home is easy and cheap. In fact, for mere pennies you have a great drink or cocktail mixer. The basic recipe looks like so:
- Boil water for whatever quantity of tea you wish to make. I always make a litre or two because tea lasts well in the refrigerator.
- Steep tea, loose or bags, in a cup, jug, pitcher, whatever. A glass container works best and will be easier to clean as tea has staining power.
- Strain if needed.
- Add sugar if you like. In the Southern US people add upwards of 500g of sugar for every 2 litres of tea. I personally prefer no sugar especially if I am using it as a mixer for a drink
- Chill in the refrigerator.
Feeling like you want something a bit stronger?
Feeling like you want something a bit stronger? Iced tea cocktails make a wonderfully refreshing and light alternative to filling drinks like beer on a warm day.
My favourite version for black iced tea is:
- 3 parts strong iced tea
- 1-2 parts peach vodka
- Fresh mint leaves broken up
- Peach slices
- 1 tsp sugar (optional)
To prepare place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and pour into a glass. Garnish with mint if desired.
My favorite cocktail for green iced tea is:
- 4 parts iced green tea
- 1 part passion fruit or pineapple juice
- 1 part White Tequila
- 1 grapefruit or orange slice for garnish
To prepare place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into glass. Add fruit for garnish.
Play with it…
Iced tea is a great summer drink on its own or as a base for other drinks. Play with it, let your imagination run wild and enjoy toying with conventional British tea ideals.