Friday, July 15, 2011

Sun Tea

It's time to make history...the first (and probably last) calorie free Birchwood recipe.  I've been living off this stuff ever since the heat wave hit.  One jar barely lasts two days.

Growing up, my mother made endless jars of sun tea with mint.  At the end of an endless stream of  99° days, we'd haul in the pitcher and watch the steam rise as it hit the ice in our glasses.  For some reason, sun tea just fell out of my life.  Until now.

Start early in the morning with a trip to the Birchwood Mint Gardens.  A few years ago I planted one tiny mint plant next to one measly sprig of oregano and walked away, never even troubling to water them.  Of course I knew that mint is extremely hardy, but had no idea that oregano was just as vicious.  The two have been at war ever since.

Pick a handful of mint leaves, no stems.

About this much.

Rinse the leaves, and put in a jar with tea bags.  Three tea bags is about right for a 2 quart jar.

Fill with cold water and seal it up.

Set it out in the sun and walk away.  (What do you do if it's raining or cloudy?  You still set it out and walk away.  The magic just won't happen if you leave it indoors)

Come back at the end of the day...remove leaves and tea bags.  Get home early?  No problem.  Get home late? No problem.  Brewing times between 4 hours and 12 hours are acceptable.  Just pour into a glass of ice and forget about the heat for a while.

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