As I've written about before, I've got a bit of American Southern heritage in my upbringing, and one of the main components of Southern culture is tea.
Not hot tea.
Not herbal tea.
Sweet ICED tea.
A few posts ago, someone asked about how to make Southern sweet tea, and I told her I'd be glad to oblige with a recipe! You know what's even better? You may notice that the photos below are when I had long hair... and it's sunny outside...
I've been anticipating this post for a long time!
The first thing you gotta know about Southern sweet tea is that it's basically diabetes in a glass, and also that it's delicious. It may take a while to learn how to hold your tea like a Southerner, so don't feel bad if you go into a sugar coma the first time you try it. That's how it's supposed to be.
That being said, you can adjust the sugar content as you like. In America, the sugar levels in ice tea increase the further south you go in the country, so this beverage can still be authentically American no matter how much sugar you've got in it. But if you want it to be Southern.... add the sugar.
So enough of the back story, here's how you make Southern sweet tea, via my husband's technique. This recipe will make about a gallon.
- 2 family sized tea bags, or 4 individual ones
Orange pekoe tea tastes the best, but black tea works, too. Try to find a brand of tea that is "smooth" when brewed. Cain's and Tetley are good brands to use if you can find them!
- 3/4 cup of sugar
- medium pot
1. Fill the pot full of water and put it on the stove to heat.
2. Add in the tea bags and sugar and let it steep.
3. It's okay if the water boils; just make sure the sugar is dissolved and the water is pretty dark from the steeped tea. This is your sweet tea concentrate.
4. Pour this mixture into a pitcher, and fill the rest of the container up with cold water, and add some ice cubes if you want to drink it immediately.
There you go! Now you've got Southern sweet tea! Grab a wine glass or giant mason jar and get to sipping!