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Summertime heat calls for an ice cold refreshment, and nothing quenches my thirst like a Sweet Mint Iced Tea. You could say that I am a tea girl, I love a wide variety of teas, and I have had my fair share from different places around the world. I have enjoyed some of my favorite hot teas while visiting the United Kingdom (shocker), but my favorite iced tea happens to be served right in the DC area. WHAT! Sweet tea that doesn’t come from the South?!! For those in the South who like tea with their sugar, you are going to LOVE using large quantities of this simple syrup.
So, I need to back up and tell you my inspiration for this Sweet Tea. My summer tea of choice has always been a black iced tea lightly sweetened with a few slices of orange. That is, until a few months ago. I was out to lunch with my mom, who was visiting for the week, and we were dining at a local pizza joint. I’d eaten there many times before but in efforts to keep my restaurant spendings within our budget, I usually order water. Obviously, I splurged this time and ordered a mint iced tea. Little did I know that from that moment on I would crave (yes, like a pregnancy craving) this drink. [My mouth is watering, just thinking about it.] I HAD to figure out how to replicate a recipe for this tea and STAT!
Okay, okay, I know your mouth is probably also watering at this point, and it’s kind of cruel that I keep talking about how great this tea is when I can just get up and go make myself a tall glass of this irresistible Sweet Mint Iced Tea. Then again, if your reading this, then it’s possible that you might actually want to hear what I have to say about tea. In that case, I am imploring you to purchase quality teas, preferably reputable loose leaf. A quality tea has a stronger flavor, with brighter tones and does not leave a bitter aftertaste, like many low quality teas tend to do. Of course, a lot of this is also dependent on your brewing process … okay, so maybe I need to post about brewing your tea. In the mean time HERE is an example of a loose leaf green tea that would pair well with this simple syrup.
Mint Simple Syrup
Prep time: 10 minutes / Makes: 1 1/2 cups
1 cup sugar, cane or granulated
1 cup water
6-8 fresh mint leaves
- Sanitize a heat safe glass jar or bottle with lid for storing.
- Wash mint leaves and pat dry.
- Place mint leaves in the glass jar/bottle and set aside.
- In a small saucepan, pour in water and sugar, bring to a boil.
- Once water is begins to boil, turn heat down to medium-low, stir, and allow syrup to simmer, thickening for five minutes.
- Remove syrup from heat and pour into the heat safe glass jar/bottle.
- Allow syrup to cool completely, store in the refrigerator.
- After 24 hours, remove the mint leaves from the glass jar/bottle.
- Continue storing the syrup in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
Use a teaspoon or two of this simple syrup in your favorite herbal, black, or green tea.
Brew your favorite herbal, black, or green tea according to the directions given and allow it to cool. Refrigerate if possible before serving. Serve over ice and flavor with a teaspoon or two of this Mint Simple Syrup. I brewed 1 cup black tea and 1/2 cup GREEN MINT TEA in the iced tea pictured in this post. I then added two teaspoons Mint Simple Syrup, allowed tea to cool, served over ice, and garnished with mint leaves.