How to make Iced Tea

Iced tea is (to my mind anyway) quintessentially American.  So having a New Zealander tell you how she makes her iced tea is like teaching your grandmother to suck eggs, though my grandmother NEVER sucked eggs. Anyway making cold tea from hot water has always left a bitterness in the tea that I do not like.  So I make it using cold water. Good fresh filtered water is pretty important to good iced tea.

So here is how to make the easiest iced tea in the world. 

In the evening. Put two Dargeeling tea bags (or English breakfast or whatever) and one lemon tea bag  (or fennel or chamomile if you don’t get allergies) into a big jug of cold water. Use REAL Tea not those dusty iced tea bags.  Refrigerate for the night. In the morning it is ready, a gentle iced tea with no bitterness,  a delicate yet full tea flavour, chilled and ready to drink. You can use any kind of good tea at all, even the lovely minty green tea. A quarter of a cup of tea leaves would be better but I find the tea bags so much easier in my fast moving morning.

Remove the tea bags or strain the leaves in the morning.

You can add a slice of lemon or a few bruised mint leaves.

Cold brew is the way to go for me.  And this drink is  a fixture in my fridge now.

Artistic dirty pig.  Makes a change.

I can hear the Bobby calf calling out to his mother. I still need him to help me get Lady Astor to drop her milk  in the milking room but things are improving in that department.  I bring her in get her ready, turn on the pump then I bring him in to bumble about until her milk is down then wrestle him back out the door before putting on the cups. Without him her udder stays large and hard with only a tiny amount of milk released. Bad girl. She is way too old for this carry on. I have to do all this when she is in the room and prepared, with the pump running and me there hoping that gradually these will all become the triggers again and I can wean this damn calf out of my milking room. And as I dodge and grab and shoo this calf out the door I console myself that I am not milking next summer so it cannot become a life long problem.  It is rather an entertaining early morning  circus though!  The only spectator being Wai watching us from under the gate.

I hope you have a lovely day.

Love celi

Weather: Wet and Humid. Cloudy – good pig walking weather.

Tuesday 07/11 50% / 0.18 inCloudy skies during the morning hours followed by scattered showers and thunderstorms in the afternoon. Gusty winds and small hail are possible. High 86F. Winds W at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 50%.

Tuesday Night 07/11 20% / 0 inCloudy early with partial clearing expected late. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. Low 73F. Winds S at 5 to 10 mph.

43 Comments on “How to make Iced Tea

  1. I have done just that (with the calf) ….circus is right. Have you tried a rope halter on him – one of those all in one adjustable ones that’s easy to slip on and off? I finally managed to get this to work using a cheapie sheep halter and tied the calf up to a post out of the way after he got the milk going. Later on I also used this method to get mom to do a “second” let down which was almost all cream! Bonus! I’m now just letting baby roam the milk room as she is only 10 days old and with mom 24-7 — seems to work just having her in the room.

  2. I cold brew my tea too. I suggest Celestial Seasonings Lemon Zinger tea (it has no caffeine for those who care). I use 8 bags (they come in pairs, so 4 pairs) per gallon of water. You can use only 3 pairs, but I like my tea stronger. Let steep several hours in the refrigerator and enjoy!

  3. I used to make Sun Tea years ago, but the last few summers I’ve been boiled water, letting the teas (bags..) steep, then taking them out and adding more cold water. THIS IS FAR EASIER !! Thanks sooo much for the info.
    I was just thinking what fun it would be to see a video of you in the early hours of the morning… doing your ‘calf/mother/machine juggling!

      • My great-grandma made sun tea forever ago. I don’t think it really sits in the sun long enough to grow anything interesting bacteria-wise.

        • Sun tea once was the only way tea was brewed on family farm porches for years and years. (A method that took little hands-on effort and the wife could do other things.) It became trendy again during the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s – and on and on each decade as the natural method was “discovered” by the back to earth/simple living;/organic…) I remember big jugs on porches as a child visiting very ancient relatives – it sat there all day long until used at night. Maybe they were hardier folks with more high functioning immune systems, but I’ve never heard of anyone getting sick from sun tea. It’s really hot here ( heat index over 104F again today, …and dad really did show us a couple of times how you actually could cook an egg on hot white sand/car hood at mid day. (But those did get fed to the animals not us HAHA – it was just for fun).
          It sure does melt ice though, so precooked tea made in the fridge makes sense to me!

  4. I love keeping a cold brew in the fridge too, my personal favourite is mint tea, I find it very good for my digestion and it’s refreshing. For the really hot summers, though, I’m a great fan of lime and watermelon infused in soda water.

    • Ohh lime and watermelon infused in soda water sounds so good.

      • I make a big jug of filtered water with slices of lime and watermelon. I stand that in the fridge overnight. Next morning, I strain the water off into Soda King bottles and carbonate it with our Soda King machine. It doesn’t last long because of the fresh fruit bits in it, but it’ll go a day if you can wait that long.

      • See the reply to janetknight57 below. You need a Soda King or Sodastream machine; if you do it with ready made soda water the bubbles go flat! The other thing you can do with leftover watermelon is to blend it with a little water and make watermelon ice cubes to add into drinks or smoothies.

        • I found a Sodastream machine very inexpensively on my neighborhood’s buy/sell/trade page on Facebook. I bet they are at thrift shops, too, as folks get tired of them.

          • I won’t get tired of ours in a hurry 🙂 I like a cold carbonated drink, but I don’t want all the sugar of commercial products, so I make my own using fresh fruit.

      • From fresh mint. I do use boiling water over crushed leaves, but unlike regular tea, you don’t get a big tannin release from mint so it’s OK.

  5. Still hugging hot coffee mug in the mornings here 🙂 Laura

  6. I love making cold brewed coffee. Some heat it up and drink it hot, but I prefer my hot coffee hot brewed and my iced coffee cold brewed.

      • I use 5 tablespoons of coffee ( coarsely ground ) per quart of water, let it steep in the fridge for 24 hours and then strain it. The taste is very smooth.

    • I have heard of this sun tea – does it ferment? heat changes the taste – so this one is not as strong – but very refreshing.. not to say that I still don’t drink my cuppa in the mid morning!

      • I don’t really know if sun tea ferments. Hmm? I use four teabags and usually mix up whatever I have on hand and then I throw one more bag in. 5 teabags in all. I have a quart glass container with a glass lid I use. I make it a bit stronger as ice cubes dilute it. It is quite refreshing. My husband, who drinks a pot of coffee down to the dregs, never wasting any of it, will drink sun tea to the bitter end. I have had to remind him a few times already this summer not to drink the tea, which ends up in the refrigerator on day 1, after several days. He always does – and must have an iron constitution. I end up putting the sun tea in the fridge anyways, so, will try your method soon.

  7. I’d appreciate understanding why Lady is holding back her milk.
    Love the cat/tiger posture

      • Mother nature and hormones i think, pigs are the same, I read an interesting article about the speed of a sow’s grunts at feed time and how it relates to her milk let down. Also as I understand it, all that scrapping for a tit and mad sucking and shoving is needed for the sow to let down her milk, apparently the milk only really flows during that peaceful bit near the end when all the piglets are quiet and madly sucking.

  8. I wonder what caused Lady Astor to stop letting her milk down? It’s good you were on top of it. That mastitis is so painful. I will try your iced tea technique. I like the unseeetened version I’ve tried in the States. My neighbours in Saskatchewan, had a hired hand who would give us a swig of his iced tea. He carried it in a hip flask. . Hope you have a successful day.

  9. I bring a tea made from dried fruits from Germany , my favorite being rose hip tea. I cook it and then strain it and mix it with a little bit of lemonade .

  10. I love to make sun tea in the summer! I start out with ice cold water, then sit it in the full sun for 4 hours or so. Then pour yourself a glass over ice cubes. Refreshing! I’ll have to see if the cold brew method works for me too. I do refrigerate the tea after it’s been in the sun, and we typically drink it all in a couple of days.

  11. The Daintree black tree we like is quite mild in flavour,and no bitternrss no matter no strong, so in summer our iced tea is simply leftovers from the 2 thermoses we make each day but I’m intrigued by the cold brew both for tea & coffee. At the moment we get iced tea if we take longer than 10 minutes to finish the cup…. aaahhh winter. Also like Kate we make mint tea straight from the garden… even hot it’s a refreshing summer drink.

  12. I will try your iced tea as it’s the bitterness that I don’t like when making it from actual tea.

  13. I found out about cold brewing tea recently. Why have I been bothering with hot brewing it just to spend time and energy cooling it off later? I much prefer it this way! So easy!

  14. Pingback: How to make Iced Tea | ACCORD RADIO

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