Turning tea up to a calming notch…

I’m really becoming a big advocate of the freshly-brewed iced tea movement. While in childhood I did enjoy the mix (4C all the way), I am coming to find as I get older, I crave homemade iced tea more than water (only sometimes….er, maybe more than sometimes.)

The complexities of the flavor, the way the right amount of lemon slice and honey added could make or break that “perfect taste”….I’m an addict through and through.

Now, I’ve also come to love my French Lavender and its delicious (and soothing) qualities in my iced tea, so I sought out another freshly-brewed combination to incorporate said flavor. I was about ready to give up until in the back of my pantry, I located an unopened box (unopened?!? How did I miss it?) of Lemon & Ginger tea bags. And just like with all my teas, I decided to do a mixture of the Lemon & Ginger with some green tea to incorporate some soothing notes to that kick of citrus & spice. The end result being that my house smelled beyond heavenly and refreshing!

I had considered adding fresh ginger to the tea, but after consideration, I wanted to test out a batch without overloading my taste buds with that potent ginger flavor (and for those of you who have tried fresh ginger before, you know exactly what I mean!)

So my advice to you: if you want to add a kick to your tea (but not too much), temper it with a nice soothing flavor. You can’t go wrong.

Enjoy!

~ Jenny V


  Jenn’s “Om, Snap!” Iced Green Tea

10 bags Lemon & Ginger Tea

10 bags Green Tea

1 1/2 teaspoons French Lavender

1/4 cup honey

20-22 cups water

Directions:

1) In a large stock pot, put in water on high heat. Just before boiling, add in French Lavender in infuser ball.

2) When water is boiling, whisk in honey to incorporate (you can always add more if you’d like) and tea bags. Turn off heat, cover, and move off burner to allow to cool.

3) After 1-2 hours, transfer to pitcher and/or mason jars. Refrigerate overnight. Serve with lemon slice.

This tea is twisted (and soothing) in a delicious way

If there was a drink that I could drink practically every day (aside from red wine and coffee), it would have to be tea. Sweetened, unsweetened, Green Tea, herbal tea, etc…you name a tea, I most likely have tried it! (Fun fact: I get more excited about finding Tea Rooms over a bar….and Tea Rooms more times than not have delicious blueberry scones with clotted cream……mmmmmmmm) So it’s no surprise that when the warmer weather starts to peek out a little bit, I go for my various teas and herbs to create some fun new iced tea concoctions!

And especially when Matt is away for work purposes, the creative concoctions can get a little interesting, like my latest new love: French Lavender. Now, most of us know that lavender has an extremely soothing fragrance, but can also be applied to use in the kitchen. And thanks to my absolutely fabulous friend Julie, who purchased the French Lavender I had placed on our wedding registry, I got inspired to try out this aromatic in my standard recipe for iced tea!

With iced tea, I encourage experimenting. It doesn’t always need to be the standard. You can add herbal teas (and mix’em up), you can add honey, mint, lemon, different spices, etc. I always try to be different by making half of the tea bags I use a regular tea, while the other half are a flavor/specialty tea. It’s always nice to impart just a bit of flavor if you’re not too keen on going solely on one flavor.

The possibilities are truly endless! And to be different, try using Mason Jars instead of a giant pitcher. It looks prettier and also a great way to serve drinks for a party/get-together! (I unabashedly admit that four of those jars of Peach Lavender tea are already gone….three of them within a couple hours.)

While this is only one take, I encourage each and every one of you to try a variation and make it your own! And remember, the measurements I use don’t have to be what you use. Adjust accordingly to your own tastes, especially on the strength of the tea. But I do recommend a little extra water to boil first, because some of it will evaporate in the process.

Enjoy!

~ Jenny V


Jenn’s Peach Lavender Iced Tea

Ingredients:

10 bags of Black Tea

8 bags of Peach Tea

3-4 teaspoons French Lavender (if you have an infuser ball, I recommend using it for the lavender)

1/2 – 3/4 cup honey

20 cups water (in an 8 qt. pot)

Optional:

12 Mason Jars (in place of a pitcher)

Directions:

1) In an 8 qt. pot, pour water in and cover on high heat

2) Unwrap all tea bags and either twist all strings together or cut strings entirely (Note: it makes life easier if you cut the strings, especially since the bags will need to sit and brew for a while)

3) When water is close to boiling, put in French Lavender in infuser ball and place in water. (This will stay in even as tea steeps, but since the flavor is very delicate, you want to allow time for the lavender to impart flavor into the water.)

4) As soon as water is boiling, add honey and start whisking in (You want to put the honey in when the water is hot – it’s a great way to get sweetness in and the temperature of that water will allow for it to meld quicker.)

5) Place tea bags in water and turn off heat. Cover and allow time to steep, at least 15 minutes (or longer, if you prefer a stronger brew). Place pot on a towel or cool burner so that the tea has time to cool down before you put it in the fridge.

6) Once cooled slightly, ladle into mason jars, close with lid, and place in fridge for 2-3 hours before serving. Garnish with lemon.