Hot summer days are perfect for iced tea drinking.
That glistening liquid amber with plenty of tropical fruit, and yes, lots of ice!
Essentially, any tea can be served chilled but some tend to work better, such as fruit flavour ones, black tea that has lower tannin (so the tea looks more crystally) and ones with rich colour like Hibiscus
Here are a few tips to make a nice iced tea:
1. Choose a tea of low tannin – this will ensure your tea looks “shinny and crystal clear”. Ceylon black tea, any green tea (except the smoky types), Chinese black tea such as Lychee black tea and Keemun are good choices.
If you are using herbal or fruit infusions, pick something with nice vibrant colours, such as anything containing hibiscus (which will give you a ruby coloured, tart tasting infusion).
2. Make it double strength – your taste buds have to work extra hard when you drink or eat something cold. So, go ahead, make it strong – you can always add more water later, if you find it too strong.
(This is also a quick way to make iced tea if you don’t have time to chilled the tea in advance – simply pour the double strength hot tea into a glass at least half full with ice, stir and serve!)
3. Chill the glass – just like warming a plate keeps the food tasting warmer for longer, chilling the glass keeps the drink taste cold longer.
4. Make tea ice-cubes if you have time – this is labourious, but this is also the best way to make iced tea – the fresh tea taste is snap-frozen and retained.
Tea ice-cubes ensure the tea will not be diluted when ice is added to the glass. You can also mix and match different tea flavoured ice-cubes with different tea brew, e.g. lemon tea ice-cubes in jasmine green tea.
5. Sweeten – iced tea typically tastes bitter, so sweeten it when it is hot. Alternatively, like in many Asian countries, serve the iced tea with a tiny jug of white sugar syrup.
6. Dress it up – Tea is a healthy way to drink in style, especially if you want to skip milk and alcohol (so it is ladies and kids friendly)
Chunky fruits, colourful berries, oranges, lychees – throw them in a big jug with any tea – Japanese green tea, medium black tea (photo top), hibiscus herbal, plus ice – easy peasy.
Stir and serve.
So divorce those horrible bottled tea, and start enjoy a smashing summer iced tea, with all the natural goodness!