Monday, May 28, 2012

Sun Tea

Before I met my husband, I wasn't aware of how much of a Yank I was. Not that there is anything wrong with being a Yank (Yankee's fan? Yes. Yank? No.), but it wasn't until I became involved with my husband, who was raised in Tennessee and Ohio, that I realized how Northern my life was, completely sheltered from anything that involved the Midwest or South. One of those ways was shown through my complete ignorance of sun tea.

My husband knows how much I love tea, especially iced teas. One morning, he suggested I make sun tea. "Sun tea" was met with a complete blank stare. I asked him what sun tea was, and he looked at me in a way that I had only seen when I had uttered such gems as, "What's Skyline Chili?", or "What's Cedar Point -- is it like Six Flags?" My husband took me out to buy a sun tea jar and promptly called his mother for her sun tea recipe.

Since my immune system is pathetic, I always have green tea on hand. So I decided that my first sun tea would be made from green tea.

For this, I got out my:
Sun Tea Jar (This one I got at Target, although, really, any glass jug will do)
5 Packets of Tea per gallon
1 Cup of Sugar per gallon
1/4 Cup of Lemon (which later got upped to 1/3) per gallon

As you can see, this jug is easily two gallons, so everything ended up doubled.

Before I went off to work, I filled up my jug with cold water.

The beauty of this jar was that I could use the center console for my tea bags. Not like it mattered; I couldn't figure out how the "infuser" worked until long after my first round of sun tea. It's as simple as wrapping the string around the vents, but I had no idea what I was doing, which meant that all my tea bags just floated to the top.

The proper way to make sun tea is to just leave it outside on your patio or in your back yard, but our patio is completely shaded and I think my apartment neighbors would complain if I just left a jug of water in the middle of our lawn, so it got placed by a window that got eastern exposure.

And then, I went to work. I came back on my lunch break to move the jug to a window that got southern exposure (ideally, I'd have a window that had western exposure, but that's not how apartment layouts work. Honestly, I should just be lucky that I get windows on two sides of my apartment).

Once the sun set, I brought my jug back to the kitchen and mixed in the sugar and lemon. Since I love my tea extra lemony, I decided to up the lemon juice dosage.

I am definitely impressed by sun tea. The flavor is deep, but delicate. It tastes a bit like Arizona Diet Green Tea, but cheaper (if that's possible).

For Memorial Day weekend, we decided to make another jug (since we'd be at home and could just place the jug on our picnic table). This one was simple, regular tea, and it came out wonderfully. Hope everyone had a happy and safe Memorial Day weekend!

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