Today is June 1. It is the 152nd day of the year with 213 remaining in 2009. I think June is my least favorite month, because of the heat and the arrival of the hurricane season.
July is more palatable for my taste because thoughts begin to turn to fall, my favorite season. In the meantime, we will arm ourselves with a tall glass of iced tea and shed our shoes – this is National Go Barefoot Day. Reminds me of my childhood when we rarely wore shoes and stickers were our only enemies.
There are two traditional iced teas in the United States. The only variation between them is sugar. Southerners swear by our traditional sweet ice tea and drink it by the gallons. In the South, ice tea is not just a summertime drink, it is served year round with most meals. When people order tea in a Southern restaurant, chances are they will get sweet ice tea.
Outside of the southern states, iced tea is served unsweetened or “black,” and most people have never even heard of sweet tea.
Here’s a recipe to try today: I call it Yankee Iced Tea – a wonderfully tart and refreshing tea. I made some yesterday with prepared cranberry juice and it was just as good. I’ve also made it with Splenda when I’m “being good.”
- 4 quarts water
- 1 cup sugar
- 15 tea bags
- 12 oz frozen cranberry juice concentrate
Heat water to boiling, and add sugar. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Add tea bags, remove from heat and let steep for 4 to 5 minutes. Remove tea bags, and add cranberry juice concentrate.
Stir until melted and mixed, then allow to cool to room temperate before refrigerating. Serve over ice. Serves 14.
Here’s a tip for less bitter iced tea, add a pinch of baking soda to the container. Don’t overdo it. Just a pinch!
And if you can’t bear the thought of boiling water when the temperature is 90 plus, why not make some sun tea before you leave the house this morning. When you return you’ll have a nice pitcher of perfectly brewed tea.
4 tea bags
1 1/2 qts. cold water
In a 2 quart clear glass jar combine tea bags and 1 1/2 quarts water. Let stand in full sun 2 to 3 hours or until desired strength. Serve over ice. NOTE: If no sun, let stand at room temperature several hours or until desired strength. Serve over ice.