Saturday, April 3, 2010

Iced Tea

Being from the South, I grew up drinking sweet iced tea. After I got married and moved out of my mother's house, I tried many different times to brew iced tea and never could figure out what I did wrong because it just didn't taste right. I finally broke down and asked my mother what she had done to her tea, at which point, she looked at me like I was crazy for not ever realizing what she had done to the tea when I was growing up. She added in a bag of Constant Comment tea, or some other flavored tea, to the regular black tea. Simple, but it transforms the tea into a delight for the tongue.

The lineup:

One family sized bag of black tea, such as Lipton or Luzianne
One bag of Constant Comment tea
1/2 - 1 cup of sugar, or
Sweet N Low or other artificial sweetener, too taste

Fill a 3 quart pan with water until it's almost full. Set over a burner on the stove set to high and bring to a rolling boil. Turn off the burner and put the tea bags in the water. Let the tea steep for at least 15-20 minutes.

If you're going to make iced tea sweetened with sugar, put 1/2 - 1 cup of sugar into a pitcher. It's better to go with too much sugar for iced tea, because once the tea cools, the sugar won't dissolve. If the tea is really dark, I add in some tap water because munchkins at my house won't drink tea if it's too strong. Add in ice until the pitcher is full and serve immediately or chill in the refrigerator until needed.

If you're going to use an artificial sweetener, fill the pitcher with ice, add in a few packets of the sweetener and pour the hot tea over the ice. Add in a little water if the tea still looks a litte dark.

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