Thursday, May 10, 2007

Summer Means Iced Tea


(Makes 1 Gallon)

Cold Brewed

Cold brewed tea is a method that produces a very smooth cup without bitterness. The best teas for this method are ones that have very small leaves or broken leaves. Obtain two 1 gallon containers, preferably glass. Add measured tea leaves to the 1st gallon container (see quantities below.) Fill the container with 1 gallon of cold water, replace the lid, and store in the refrigerator for at least 12 hours. Cold brewed tea needs a lot of time to extract the most flavor from tea leaves. When 12 or more hours have passed, place a wide, fine mesh strainer over the mouth of the 2nd gallon container. Pour the cold brewed tea through the strainer.
Pour over ice, sip, smile :)

Sun Tea

Sun tea is made in a nearly identical way to cold brewed tea. The major differences are sun and time. Obtain two 1 gallon containers, preferably glass. Add measured tea leaves to the 1st gallon container (see quantities below.) Fill the container with 1 gallon of cold or room temperature water. Screw the lid on top of the jar, and set in the sun. Let the sun tea brew for 2-4 hours depending on the strength you prefer. When you are ready to drink iced tea, place a wide, fine mesh strainer over the mouth of the 2nd gallon container. Pour the sun tea through the strainer. Pour over ice, sip, smile :)

Coffee Brewer Method (12 cup machine)

Use your regular coffee filters as you would with coffee. Your iced tea will taste best if your coffee filter basket is cleaned regularly. Pour measured tea leaves (see quantities below) into a standard coffee filter. Run a brewing cycle, and when the tea stops dripping into the glass pot, pour the brewed tea into a 1 gallon container. Run a second brewing cycle using the same tea leaves, add to the 1st batch in your gallon container and let the tea cool.
Pour over ice, sip, smile :)

Stovetop Iced Tea

This is a method that we frequently use. This is the best method for making iced chai. Assemble 2 pots of roughly equal size (1-2 gallon capacity), a gallon jar/container, and a fine mesh strainer. Add 1 gallon of water to the pot. Heat the water until it just reaches a boil. Shut off the heat and add measured tea leaves (see quantities below.) Let the tea infuse in the hot water for 8-10 minutes. Place a wide mouth fine mesh strainer over the second pot and carefully pour hot tea through the strainer into the 2nd pot. Remember to use pot holders….steam can burn you! Let the tea cool until close to room temperature before pouring the tea into a 1 gallon jar/container. Pour over ice, sip, smile :)

With all of the above methods remember that if you like stronger tea, you can use more tea leaves or infuse the tea for a longer time. Iced chai is best made with the stovetop method to extract the most flavor. After brewing your chai, sweeten to taste and add milk or soymilk if desired.

White Heron TEA Top 10 – Measurements correspond to each grouping

¼ cup of loose tea leaves/herbals makes 1 gallon (16 cups)
American Breakfast
Earl Grey

Daybreak Masala Chai
Jasmine Green
Moroccan Hyson Mint

½ cup of loose tea leaves/herbals makes 1 gallon (16 cups)
Spicy Licorice Mint
Red Bush Herbal Chai / Ginger Mate Chai

1 cup of loose tea leaves/herbals makes 1 gallon (16 cups)
White Melon
White Pomegranate

1 ½ cups loose tea leaves/herbals makes 1 gallon (16 cups)
Cranberry Apple Ginger

1 comment:

Bob said...

It was good to enjoy a nice glass of iced tea today!

Any better and I couldn't stand it,
Bob