Let’s face it. I’m a coffee person. When I wake up I drink at least one cup but most likely two. Iced coffee? Yes please, with cream and no sugar, thank you very much! But when it comes down to brass tacks, I was a tea drinker way before I even started to like coffee (well, I was prone to taking sips from my parents hot mugs of Sanka).
Growing up, we had a downstairs tenant and she loved to throw tea parties. She was really big into British culture and she made sure that I attended them. I didn’t mind one bit. After all, there were cookies and I was drinking tea….English tea. It made me feel all grown up and lady-like. I drank my tea with milk and a bit of sugar back then. For years, my tea was always “regular”…orange pekoe – unless I was sick and then it was something served up from my dad’s tea shelf, something herbal and bland that he purchased at tiny Eastern European grocers. It just wasn’t my cup of tea.
Fast forward to being all grown up and trying all kinds of teas and even liking the ones that my dad used to force on me when I was sick. What can I say, tastes change. When we were in Europe last fall, I tried a Rooiboos tea for the first time. Our couch surfing hosts served us some on ice and it was so delicious and refreshing. I drank a few glasses and when we came back to Canada I purchased some for myself. Drinking it hot was alright but it wasn’t like I had remembered. So the other day I decided to brew some up especially for iced tea. I added a bit of sugar syrup and some fresh lime juice to add a bit of extra zing. It’s perfect on ice. It’s delicate and fragrant and totally thirst quenching. And hey, it’s full of antioxidents, low in tannins and is even rumoured to fight cancer. Not bad for a glass of delicious.
rooiboos & lime iced tea
4 bags of rooiboos (red bush) tea
4 c boiling water
4 c cold water
1/3 c (more or less depending on taste) simple syrup
juice of 1 lime
In a large pitcher, add the 4 tea bags to the 4 cups of boiling water. Steep for several minutes until all the flavour has been sucked out of those bags. Remove tea bags and add cold water, simple syrup and lime juice. Stir and refrigerate. Serve with lots of ice and slices of lime or sprigs of mint.