Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Minty Cool Iced Tea

Summer’s officially here. And, as if I still had doubts despite the weather, Baby P shows me  her paper countdown  chain every day after school. As of now, our wait will be over in just another 2 days. Because that is when schools officially close down for summer vacation. These last weeks of school has been busy with all the field days and Sports Days and Graduations. Pretty tiring, in my opinion. Everyday the girls have been coming back red-faced from school hankering for something cold to drink.  After I had done the inexhaustible amounts of juice, lemonade, buttermilk, Aam ka panna, I gave up.

"What “something cool” do you want every day?”,  I asked Anya and Baby P.
I don’t know. Just something good”…was Baby P
You could buy iced tea. I like that.”…was Anya.
You are a kid; you can’t have iced tea. It has caffeine in it”….said I; to no-one in particular, glaring at them both.
Sure I can. We have it at school at all the parties”. Anya told me.
And daddy lets me have it when he buys it from Wawa. So I can have it too”, informed Baby P.

I should have given the glare to A at that point. Fortunately, he was safely out of my sight, at work.

After sending the girls off to school the next day, I took stock of myself.

…..I let them have adrak-tulsi ki chai, as a treat some weekends; or when they’re sick. That’s caffeine that I am feeding them….
…..Plus they’re not really little anymore. 
…..If the school allows iced tea for middle schoolers- it should be all right.
….and A….he bought iced tea for Baby P? He’s going to hear about it from me…..
….meanwhile, I guess if I made it at home, I could control the sugar and caffeine and make it “healthier” than the store bought…..

So, Monday evening, the kiddos came home to my version of iced tea.

Lemon and Mint Iced Tea

How I did it:  I was going by taste mostly…not a recipe.
  • The first thing to do- boil tea.  I boiled 2 tea bags in 4 cups of water (see, I was going for the milder “caffeine”!) Boiled it till the color seems right- about 5 min.
  • I also added a spring of mint leaves while boiling tea.
  • Add sugar, and let it dissolve. I had to add about a 3/4 cups sugar for it to taste right to me. 
  • Let it cool- at least come to room temperature.
  • Add lemon juice. I added freshly squeezed and strained juice of 1 rather large lemon.
  • Let it sit in the fridge till the girls came back home- which was about 4 hours after I had it made.

My two  cents:  The verdict from Anya - it tastes just like to store bought - brought back my caffeine-concerns. But I shot them down. And accepted the compliment.

I’d also added mint- which my mom always said was a big summer coolant….I did it better than any store-bought,,,,I consoled myself :-)

I waited for the tea to cool down before adding lemon juice. Another of my mom’s wisdoms- heat breaks down some of the acidity of citrus- she said. So you lose some of the “lemony” taste. Can’t vouch for scientific accuracy- but I follow the rule.

Enjoy the summer!