For the long lazy days of summer, when it’s hotter than hades out, what is more refreshing than a tall cool glass of ice tea. Some of you may say beer, but I don’t drink beer so I don’t know much about it other than I don’t like it… so, let’s talk iced tea.
Did you know that iced tea actually has many benefits? Yep, it does. Here’s a few.
- It keeps you Hydrated… yeah, I know duh, but did you also know that tea is one of the best sources of hydration, second to water!
- It boosts your Antioxidants… tea has about eight to 10 times the polyphenol antioxidants found in fruits and vegetables.
- It’s better for you than pop… yeah, another duh moment but get this, A 12-ounce can of regular Coke contains 39 grams of total sugar, which is about 9 1/2 teaspoons of sugar and 140 calories. Twelve ounces of unsweetened iced tea has 0 teaspoons of sugar and 2 calories.
- It may help your Teeth… drinking tea may help prevent tooth loss; tea changes the pH in your mouth, which may prevent cavities.
- It provides a source of Manganese… you may be asking yourself, why do I want manganese, well I’ll tell ya. Manganese promotes healthy wound healing, helps maintain the strength of your bones and supports your metabolism.
- It helps your Heart…a comprehensive review study found a nearly 20 percent reduction in the risk of heart attack and a 35 percent reduced risk of stroke among those who drank one to three cups of green tea daily. Those who drank four or more cups of green tea daily had a 32 percent reduction in the risk of having a heart attack and lower levels of LDL cholesterol.
Pretty good huh, all that from drinking tea, and it’s tasty too!
Now lets get to the brewing of iced tea. Yeah, I know, how hard can it be to make ice tea? That’s the beauty of it! It’s not hard at all!!!
You can throw a couple of teabags into a pot, brew it then add more water and ice. Since I prefer flavoured loose leaf tea I’ll tell ya how I do it.
The Cold Steep Method This method creates a super smooth, flavourful iced tea with less caffeine.
Use about 1.5x the amount of tea you would per cup of hot tea. So, for 1 cup (8oz) of cold water, use 1.5tsp of tea. Let’s say you’re making a 1L (about 33oz) jug of iced tea:
- measure out 6 tsp of tea
- fill the jug with cold water
- put the jug in the fridge for 4-10 hours (overnight is easy)
- strain out the leaves and drink!
My favourite is Bohemian Raspberry Green. The flavour of the raspberry really comes through with the smooth green tea notes and personally I prefer it unsweetened. Wanna be all swanky when guests come by and look like you are the perfect housewife, you know that June Cleaver look, add some ice cubes, toss in a few raspberries and a sprig of mint and you guest will be wondering, How does she do it?
The Hot Steep Method Oh No! The guests have arrived and I don’t have any iced tea made… not to worry, you can make almost instant iced tea by first making a double strength cup of hot tea. Just make sure you’ve got ice in the freezer.
- use double the amount of loose tea per cup of water. So, 2 tsp of tea per 8oz cup. Steep as per the tea’s normal steeping guidelines
- remove the leaves
- if you want it sweet, add your sweetener while it’s hot so it dissolves
- pour your double strength hot tea into a cup of ice and enjoy!
Number 2 on my list of favs is Long Island Strawberry Green. Just opening up the bag gives you the fragrance of fresh strawberries. Dress this one up with a strawberry cut and put on the edge of the glass with a sprig of mint and your guests will be all “Ooooh, yummy!”
And now for the really fun part… Adult Iced Tea! This is one you reserve for special occasions like, hmm, I’m thirsty, or a back yard bbq, or even those really special occasions, like say, an outdoor wedding reception.
Prepare your favourite tea with one of the methods above and simply add the booze of your choice.
- Blueberry infused vodka with Blueberry Green tea
- Chambourd Liqueur with a good quality vodka to really bump up the refreshing taste of Bohemian Raspberry tea
- Moscato with Oasis Mango White tea
Or just add whatever tickles your fancy. Like bourbon? add bourbon, whiskey? what the h… you get the idea
Garnish it the way you like and you’ve got yourself the perfect summer refresher.
I carry over a dozen flavours of loose tea and some hand tied artisan for any occasion and any tastebud. Packages are available in 25, 50 or 100gm bags. Call or message to learn about the different types and flavour profiles, or if you are local just drop in. As an added bonus, when you purchase any 100g bag you’ll receive a 25g bag of your choice FREE!