I’ve said this before and this won’t be the last time I say it. Sometimes it’s the simple things that are best. For example, homemade lemonade in the summer. It’s that tang that hits you in the back of your mouth and makes your jaw tingle, that only comes from fresh squeezed lemons or limes. Okay, not really true, I had an extreme sour candy the other day and it tingled my jaws like nothing ever had before! But, back to lemonade, it is such a simple thing, and one I hope you’ll be inspired to try soon. And, if you remember the old days of the Village Soda Shop at Reynolda Village, then I’m sure you are quickly taken back to Orange-ade glory!
So it is with Sweet Tea, same simple joy minus the tingle in your jaws. But the simplicity of brewing a pot of iced tea is a gesture that sometimes goes a long way. It is somewhat becoming a lost art really, a memory of Grandma’s house most people save for ordering out, but it is so easy you’ll see there is no art to it. So go drag out a pitcher and buy some citrus and/or tea bags- treat your family to some simple summer love in a tall cold glass this weekend. Show them how easy it is to enjoy the best things about food and life while quenching your thirst.
Homemade Lemonade or Limeade- makes just over 2 quarts
1/2 cup water
1-1/2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon, peeled or grated, lemon or lime rind (about two lemons)
1-3/4 cups fresh squeezed lemon or lime juice
6-7 cups ice water
Directions: Bring 1/2 cup water to boil in medium saucepan. Stir in sugar and citrus rind, stir until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, stir in squeezed juice and water. Serve in tall glass, garnishing with lemon or lime slices, straws and enjoy! Hint: lemons and limes juice better when they are not cold. If you want more tang and less sweet, cut the sugar amount back to just over a cup of sugar and citrus back to 1 1/2 cups. Get Creative with it! Put mint in your simple syrup mix, combine different juices, add fresh summer berries for Lemon-raspeberry-ade…no rules here as long as it tastes good!
Sweet Mint Tea
8 cups water
2 family size tea bags
3 or 4 sprigs of fresh mint, about 4″ each
3/4 cup sugar, more or less to your liking
Directions: Bring water to a boil. While water is heating, place tea bags and mint sprigs in another tea pot or heat proof pitcher. When water is just coming to a boil, remove from heat and pour over tea bags and mint, cover and steep for 5 minutes. Remove tea bags and mint, pressing with back of spoon to extract all the flavor. Stir is sugar to dissolve while hot, let sit to chill. Serve over ice with lemon wedge, and enjoy! I grew up drinking this tea, and now my kids love to help make it as well.