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Thread: How do I make real iced tea?

  1. #26
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    I put about 5 bags in about a cup of water and heat until just before it boils. I found if I boil it, it turns cloudy. Let the bags sit for awhile until it gets a dark color. I add sugar at this point so it melts while the tea is still warm. Depending on how sweet you like it, I add about 3/4 cup sugar. I pour the tea in a pitcher and add more water until it gets the color I like. At this point it can go in the frdige to cool.

  2. #27
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    As a Southern raised girl, iced tea is my first drink of choice. I use a 2 quart pan filled with water, bring to boil, drop in 10-12 tea bags (yes I like tea to look like tea), put lid on, remove from heat and let steep for 5 minutes. I drink it unsweetened totally. But when I was growing up, my mother would remove the tea bags after 5 min. and add the sugar while it is still hot so it dissolves. If you add sugar, add more than you think because you will need to dilute this tea after cooling. I use two half gallon Ball jars putting about a quart of tea in each one and then adding water diluting to the color that I prefer.

  3. #28
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    I have adapted my recipe to an "Arnold Palmer" type of tea.
    Boil water on the stove. Put in 2 iced tea family size bags and steep for 10 minutes. Meanwhile fill 2 qt. pitcher with cold water 1/6 way full. Allow hot tea to cool and then pour in with cold water. (Ice cubes just dilute everything so I don't use them except in my glass). Add 1/4 cup lemon juice. Add as much sugar as you would like. Pour over ice...yum!

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by romanojg View Post
    I only drink unsweetened tea, hot or cold. I normally heat water to just under the boiling point. Most of the time I do couple of cups in the microwave, faster and easier. Then I add the tea bags for about 5 min and take them out and pour over ice. I don't want the bitter stuff to get into my tea. When you drink it without sugar, etc then you notice the taste of the tea itself. I can't stand instant tea, no matter what. If I was going to add sugar it would be to disolve it in the hot water first.

    Judy
    I like my tea like yours!

    Now I'm looking for help--
    I'm hosting a graduation party for 700 and wanting to make a very strong tea concentrate 2 days before the event, to be added to water to make tea as needed thru out the event. Any suggestions?
    Thanks
    Mary

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by quilter1 View Post
    This sounds like a simple question for someone who has been cooking for 50+ years, but how do you make real iced tea? I dislike the canned sweet tea we buy way up here in the north. I make a very good pot of hot tea but iced sweet tea has me baffled. It would be nice to have a pitcher in my fridge ready to drink, now that our hot and humid summer is approaching. Thanks everyone for the help.
    I have one pan that is only for making tea. Fill it up with good (not faucet) water. The water you use makes all the difference and we have hard water here. Let it come to a boil. Then put in a Lipton 1 gallon tea bag (I get them from Sam's) and let it steep for 10 mins. Pour it into a pitcher that has some water already into and put it in the frig. Then when we want a glass - pour into glass and fill with ice. I only make unsweeten tea as everyone has a different like on sweetness. Also when we do go out to eat - we order unsweetened tea as most people/places like it like syrup. My mother in law would have a little coffee or tea with her sugar and we could not stand it. I usually make 1-2 gallons every day and everyone likes it. Good luck.

  6. #31
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    I have seen Paula Deen make iced tea. She states make your tea like you usually do a bag for each cup or you can make sun tea (still a bag for each cup) If you want it sweetened (since sugar doesn't dissolve in cold water) make a simple syrup. Equal parts sugar and water. Bring it to a boil but do keep an eye on it. Let it cool and store in the refrigerator for future use. I don't like sweet tea but if I know I'm having company, I have the simple syrup on hand. I also have raspberry and lemons and mint julep for those who want something different. Sorry, I don't have any diet sweeteners on my shelves. I have used a little Bailey's in my tea on the rock's. Yummmm!

  7. #32
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    nnwalton2 makes a point I forgot to mention. I buy the bottled water when I'm making for tea. We have a filter but that would take forever. Didn't know about Sam's having the gallon bags. Will have to check it out.

  8. #33
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    I do what my mom always did: For a 2-qt. pitcher of iced tea, I boil about 3 c of water on top of the stove, add 8 teabags, plus a couple extra for the pitcher. Let it sit until cool. Remove the teabags, add about 3/4-1c sugar and stir. Pour in pitcher; add water to fill and stick in frig.

  9. #34
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    I put 6 regular tea bags or 3 family size tea bags in a tea pot. Bring the tea kettle to boil, then fill the tea pot and let it steep for about 15 minutes or more. Pour the tea into a 2 qt. pitcher and fill to the 2 qt. line with cold water. If you want it sweetened, add about 1/2 cup sugar while it's hot, stir and then add the cold water. You can add more or less sugar to your desired taste. I use Lipton tea because it brews a stronger tea than other brands. We drink ours unsweetened.
    Karen in Kentucky

  10. #35
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    i take a family tea bag or 2 small ones put in a microwave safe (i use pyrex) measuring cup cook for 2 minutes with the tea bag in it.put in your container and let it sit for a bit add water. thats all i do. man that sounds good about right now too
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  11. #36
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    I love sun tea! I use a gallon glass container with a screw on lid. I like to use the family size tea bags, using about 5 - 6 depending on the weather. Also I use bottled water, not as bitter. I don't like sweetened back back east where they ask you if you want sweetened tea or not. They make a simple syrup which is about 1 cup sugar to 2 cups water; bring to a boil, let cool. Hope this helps.

  12. #37
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    Ice tea is always in my house......I boil 2 qts of water and add 1/2 cup of sugar (real sugar)stirring until it boils and when it comes to a boil turn off and I then add my tea bags (12) I use decaffinated tea I then wait till it cools and transfer to my large pitcher which is 4 qts...remove tea bags and add... more water to the pitcher usually about another qt then add my lemon juice...you need to taste as you go along to see if you want or need more sugar,water or lemon...once you get this recipe down you will never use another one.....I re-searched ice tea recipes for a year and when I came across this one which was in my moms recipe box I had that I forgot ....I was like omg right in front of me lol....anyways hope everyone tries it you will love it.......Trish

  13. #38
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    I throw 6 bags in a 2qt sauce pan. Fill it with water and bring to a boil.let it simmer 5 minutes. Turn it off and let it cool. If you want sweet tea, dissolve sugar then let it cool. Pour in gallon pitcher and fill with water.

  14. #39
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    Wow! I only steep my tea for 3-5 minutes and never more than 10 minutes.... 3 family size Lipton Tea bags to make a gallon of tea. Bring water to a boil, take the pot off the burner and add the tea bags. Add sugar... I only use about 1/2 cup sugar, but that's a personal preference. For really sweet tea, add more sugar. Be sure to put the sugar in while the water is hot so it will melt well. Then add cold water to fill your container. Tweek to your own taste.
    Nancy

  15. #40
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    The secret to true Southern sweet tea is making sure the sugar is completely dissolved in the hot tea just after brewing. You can get more sugar into the water when its hot. If you add the sugar when its cool it won't dissolve.
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  16. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0tis View Post
    My mom always boiled water in the kettle or in a saucepan - then pour the hot water in the pitcher with your tea bags (I use between 5-8 tea bags) I think Lipton is the best - fill the pitcher about half way or less with hot water- just let the tea bags steep for a while - then add cold water to the top - sweeten as you like it - usually add ice to the glass to cool it more.
    I have made it the same way for years. Only change is I only use 4 tea bags, I change the flavors. I have a 2 quart pitcher in the refrigerator that is only for ice tea. If I want southern sweet tea I add 3/4 of a cup of sugar but normally I use only about 1/4 of a cup of sugar. I don't usually drink really sweet tea. In the summer we make a new pitcher almost daily. Much better than pop or soda.

  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by donnajean View Post
    I make sun tea. I use the large canning jars, put a teabag in & set in the sun for a couple hours. Put a bit of sugar in while it is still warm & shake - then refrigerate.
    Yes, this is the way to get nice, mild tea. I don't add the sugar before refrigerating. Years ago, we had neighbors who were descended from Basque shepherds, and they told us this is how they made tea. Makes for a good story and also good tea! :-)
    "A woman is like a tea bag-you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water." Eleanor Roosevelt

  18. #43
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    If you want sweet tea you need to add the sugar to hot tea so it dissolves. Does not dissolve well in cold liquid. I boil water with5-7 tea bags and add sugar while it is hot and then put in pitcher and let it cool in the refrig.

  19. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by quilter1 View Post
    This sounds like a simple question for someone who has been cooking for 50+ years, but how do you make real iced tea? I dislike the canned sweet tea we buy way up here in the north. I make a very good pot of hot tea but iced sweet tea has me baffled. It would be nice to have a pitcher in my fridge ready to drink, now that our hot and humid summer is approaching. Thanks everyone for the help.

    I fill a gallon jar of water...put teabags in and put in the fridge. Makes the best tea!

  20. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by quilter1 View Post
    This sounds like a simple question for someone who has been cooking for 50+ years, but how do you make real iced tea? I dislike the canned sweet tea we buy way up here in the north. I make a very good pot of hot tea but iced sweet tea has me baffled. It would be nice to have a pitcher in my fridge ready to drink, now that our hot and humid summer is approaching. Thanks everyone for the help.
    You can make sweet tea syrup and store in the refrigerator. Take 3 cups of water and boil. Put in four of the large family size tea bags. Let them steep in the water for 20 minutes or so. Squeeze out the tea bags. Then reboil the tea with 3/4 cup of sugar. You get a simple syrup (about a cup and a half). Put that in a mason jar in the refrigerator - it will be okay for up to 2 months. When you want sweet tea take 1/4 cup of the syrup and mix with about 2 quarts of water.

  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bassetlvr View Post
    If you want sweet tea you need to add the sugar to hot tea so it dissolves. Does not dissolve well in cold liquid. I boil water with5-7 tea bags and add sugar while it is hot and then put in pitcher and let it cool in the refrig.
    Wow, so many different ways to make Iced Tea! I put about two cups water in a pot and bring to boil. Add seven to eight single tea bags and let sit for about 15 minutes. Squeeze the tea bags into the water and add to about a half gallon water in pitcher. It is very important to add the sugar while warm. I add lemon and stir until the sugar is dissolved and refrigerate. My family likes very sweet tea and adding the lemon up front will make your tea very cloudy. It is the way we have always done it and my entire southern family loves it!

  22. #47
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    We Southerners make the tea with several teabags and allow it to steep. Sweeten it to taste and stir well. Then add cold water to your taste. Put in large container and into the fridge. Sweetening the tea base while it is hot seems to make it taste better.

  23. #48
    Senior Member Woodster's Avatar
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    You can also make a simple syrup of sugar and hot water. Put one cup of sugar in a glass jar and pour boiled hot water over it to make a syrup. Then you can add this to your premade tea and there's no need to worry about the sugar dissolving. You can use as much or little of the syrup as you like. Keep any remaining syrup in the fridge for the next batch of tea.

  24. #49
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    4-5 family size tea bags.
    boil water in a saucepan add bags and steep for 30 minutes or more.
    Pour the steeped tea in a gallon pitcher add 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, add ice and cold water
    Sweeten to taste and refrigerate. Enjoy.
    Never look down on anyone, unless you are helping them up.

  25. #50
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    Old Fashion Southern Sweet Tea:
    5-8 family size tea bags (or 12 regular)
    1 Quart boiling water (4 cups)
    3 Quarts cool watecr
    1 1/2 cups sugar (or to taste)
    1/4 tsp. baking soda (secret ingredient)
    Sprinkle baking soda in large glass pitcher. Add tea bags to pitcher. Pour boiling water over tea bags, cover and let steep 15 minutes. Remove tea bags and discard. Add sugar and stir to dissolve. Add cool water. Stir well and serve over ice.

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