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June 16, 2017

It's summer and every tea lover across the globe are looking for that killer iced tea recipe that will not only impress their friends and make them famous. Well maybe not quiet exactly but if looking to make a nice jug of ice tea to accompany a summer barbeque or indulge in during those long summer evenings, then there are a few things you may want to remember.

Choose your favourite tea

Be creative and experiment a little, ice tea does not have to be just about orange pekoe (black) tea. There are some great teas out that will make excellent bases for the perfect jug. Why not try using Rooibos, Honeybush or even other tisanes like peppermint or one of the fruit countless teas on the market. Or what about green ice tea - all the rage the last few years!

Rooibos tea (red-bush) and Honeybush are great caffeine-free alternatives from South Africa. They are low in tannin and packed full of antioxidants and other minerals, perfect for kids and to drink all day long. The best part is they are extremely versatile and can flavour with just about anything: think vanilla, mango, strawberry or even as a base for alcoholic iced-teas and cocktails...

Best jug or pitcher

Glass pitchers or jugs are usually always best. Metal and plastic pitches are not recommended as they sometimes give off an unusual taste or retain smells from previous beverages they held. The same applies to making tea in a different tea pot or cleaned very well if you making a different variety.

Using tea bags?

If using tea bags, remember to tie them together as it makes it easier to get them out of the jug or bowl afterwards. We like to use individual loose leaf tea pouches like T-sac, they come in big sizes so can put enough tea in for a whole jug and easy to drop in and take out afterwards. Alternatively a large tea filter works equally good, just as long as the tealeaves are fully submerged in the water.

Let the tea steep overnight or few a good few hours. If you need to run out and play tennis, petanque or a round of golf - make sure to cover the pitcher as the insects will love it! Some experts maintain that a lengthy steeping makes a better tea, and you want as much flavour as possible; so the longer the better.

Add sugar or sweetner?

Only add sugar once you remove the tea bags or tea leaves, not before! 'Real iced tea' and 'real iced tea drinkers' don’t worry about calories – or so they say! Well at least those in the deep American south - the home of the original ice tea. But if you wanted a much healthier detox version why don't you try adding fruit juice instead? Grape or apple juice are perfect for this and better absorbed by your body without the spikes in blood sugar.

Keep in the refrigerator

Make sure it’s well chilled and allow ample time to get to that perfect temperature - just above freezing - on a hot summers day what else would you want! Never however keep iced tea in the refrigerator for more than two days. Remember you have made fresh homemade ice tea so not packed full of the preservatives you get in the normal supermarket varieties - so it will go off much faster. Although if you have done a good enough job it probably won't lats for more than a few hours.

Add lemon

Lastly, always serve your ice tea with a lemon wedge that drinkers can squeeze into their glass. Lemon slices don’t work because you can’t squeeze them. Cut up a couple of chunky wedges. To add some varieties why not add some slices of orange or experiment with cucumber for a Pimm's with a twist.

Best of luck with your summer ice tea experiments and remember, once you get the basic right there are no rules. Forget about boring old jugs of cordial, ice tea is in this summer so make sure yours is chilled.

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Sizes - Every Purchase Makes a Difference
Every 2 products sold = 1 Tree planted (costing £0.40 - 0.70 per tree over a 5 year period). Proceeds from the sale of each product directly help improve the environment and combat climate change by planting trees in Zambia with WeForest and 1% for the Planet. These are sustainable long term projects that not only focus on planting trees but on supporting the communities affected to help alleviate poverty.
Weights of loose leaf tea tins may vary slightly per product. We pack all our tea tins full and volumes are dependent on the type of tea and tea leaf size.
Tea bags tin sizes: 17 tea bags tin, 60 tea bags tin or 50 tea bags refill pouches. We pack our tea bags with larger quantities of loose leaf tea. This ensures a full flavour cup and is possible to use 2x per tea bag - for a large mug or small teapot.  View actual tin and pouches sizes here
Our tea tins (2 sizes) come in Chateau Rouge gift cartons. Our jams, honey and preserves are packed in similar boxes of two jars - perfect for gifting. All our packaging is made from FSC recycled or recyclable card and we only print using 100% environmentally inks.