As I mentioned before, I thought that the Cream of Avalon tea I bought from Moroco Chocolat would be better suited to an iced tea, rather than a hot tea. I made two batches using different methods because I’m bored and can — the foundation of all experiments.
Below are the directions for both versions: a hot water version, and a cold-water version. Cold-water version uses loose-leaf tea, hot water uses a bag.
Version 1: Hot water brewing.
The hot water method is the quickest way to ensure the flavour of the tea is up to your standards, but it takesway longer to make because the tea needs to cool before refrigeration, to avoid clouding up. I used a paper tea sachet to hold the tea. This recipe is for 2L of the good stuff:
- 2L water
- 6 teaspoons Cream of Avalon black tea (or your favourite tea — adjust brewing times for green, white or red teas)
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda (apparently the baking soda reduces bitterness from over-steeping, and as this tea does have a bitter streak, I added a tad more than the suggested “pinch”)
- 1 cup simple syrup (1 cup water: 1 cup sugar, heated until sugar is dissolved)
Put the baking soda and water in a very large pot and bring to a pretty vigorous boil. Remove it from the heat and put in your tea bag(s) for 3 -5 minutes, depending on how strong you want your tea. I did four minutes.
Pour into your biggest jug and sweeten to taste with simple syrup. I doubt you’ll use the full cup, I probably only used 1/3 of a cup, but that’s why we make more just in case!
When the tea cools to room temp, refrigerate or enjoy with ice cubes. I’m temped to try out a dash of vanilla extract, as this tea is already flavoured with vanilla, bergamot, and pink grapefruit. But that’s a personal taste.
Version 2: Cold-water brewing.
The cold water method uses loose tea to avoid the flavour of the tea bag seeping through. This tea cools the fastest, but takes the longest to steep: anywhere form 1 hour to overnight, depending on how bitter the tea gets. Do a taste-test after every hour or so to make sure you get what you want. This recipe is for about 2 1/2 cups of tea.
- 2 – 2 1/2 cups cold water
- 3 teaspoons Cream of Avalon black tea (or favourite equivalent)
- Simple syrup to sweeten.
Fill your jug with the 2 or so cups of cold water, and spoon in your loose tea. Stir it around to get as many of the leaves to sink as possible, but you’re bound to have some just hanging around on the top. Chill in fridge for an hour or more until desired strength is achieved, and then sweeten to taste with simple syrup.
When you pour the tea, you’ll need to use a strainer. Cheesecloth, fine-mesh, paper tea sachets, or a tea infuser can all help to avoid leaves kicking around in your glass.
Make sure to clear the leaves away from the top of the jug before pouring (especially with a wine carafe like I used), or else this happens and you make a giant mess: