Iced Tea Time!

It’s the iced tea season, finally. Of course, I think it’s always iced tea season. I was raised with the bad habit of cold drinks (pop/soda) I have had a hard time switching to tea until I learned to love the iced version. I must make a confession here. I do still drink diet soda sometimes (oh horrors) but what I find is that the next day the sodium has my fingers feeling stiff and I feel bloated. So I do try to stay away and also for the obvious toxic chemical reasons. It’s hard to change, so now I brew a large pot of tea (preferably a flavored green) to drink at all temperatures. LOVE IT ICED, TOO. By the time the pot is half gone, I will pour that into a pitcher, then rebrew my leaves and pour all of it together. DON’T THROW AWAY THOSE LEAVES. Really good tea can always take a second brewing so don’t waste. Some really good teas can take a third or even fourth brew.

Or brew your first pot, pour into another pitcher, brew another pot, same leaves, pour all together and put a zip-lock bag of ice into the combo and cool it down. Put in fridge and voila you have a lot of tea for the money. Another tip – pour some tea into ice cube trays and freeze, so when it melts, it’s not compromising the flavor.

Sounds silly, but here’s some more tips on how to ice tea: When it’s hot, fill the glass with lots of ice. SLOWLY pour a little of the hot beverage over the ice. Stir a little, then introduce more hot, more ice, more hot till done. If you just pour hot over the ice, it all melts and dilutes the tea. Don’t do that! Take just a moment or two to get a good flavored drink or you’ll just give up and drink the other poison.

The second and subsequent brews have less caffeine than the first brew. I know, I know, this is subject to debate, but I am of the school of thought that most caffeine (and those beastie tannins see post from May) are removed from the first 35-45 seconds. And, when you drink green or white teas, the caffeine is less to start anyway. So there.

Here is my list of “favs” for all day consumption. Mix together sometimes:
Green Teas: Bohemian Raspberry, Tropical Pineapple, Sunny Passion Pear (blend of green & white), Summer (or Winter) Citrus, Cherry Rose Green.
Black Teas: Raspberry, Wild Cherry, Wild Blackberry, Strawberry and mixing them all together for a “Berry Nice Blend”, Emperor’s Blend (green & black peach flavored), Mango Tango and then mixing both together for Peach/Mango blend.