Monday, June 11, 2007

The "Recipe" for Meadow Tea

Tracey asked so nicely. Here goes - it is not a recipe so much as an assortment of ingrediants that I throw together as the mood strikes:

about 5 quarts of water
a large bunch (as much as you can hold in your hand) of apple mint, trimmed 4 to 8 inches long, rinsed well
1 to 2 cups of sugar
5 or 6 lemons, scrubbed and sliced - make your life easier and pick the seeds out when you slice the lemons
lots of ice cubes

Bring the water to boil in an 8 quart stock pot. Once you have a rolling boil, turn off the heat and add the mint. Cover and allow to steep. I am not sure what a minimum steeping time would be, I let mine steep for more than a half hour. While it is steeping, combine lemon slices and sugar in a large bowl or pot and mash together until you have the lemons juiced and that juice has combined with the sugar to make a syrupy goo. (You could probably just use a lemon juicer and mix the juice with the sugar and save yourself some mess. I do it this way because nothing makes the kids happier than squishing the lemons and sugar with a potato masher.) When the tea has steeped for awhile, pour it through a strainer, over the lemons and syrup. Ideally the tea will still be warm so the sugar will dissolve nicely. I stir it around for awhile to make sure the sugar has dissolved and then remove the lemon rinds. You might want to save a couple to put in the pitcher for a pretty effect, but you don't want to leave them in there too long or they will make your tea bitter. When I am ready to serve the tea, I fill the pitcher with ice and pour the tea over the ice - the ice serves two purposes - to dilute the tea/lemonade mixture a bit and also to cool down the tea which will probably still be warm. This makes a ton of tea. We had 15 people at our house all day and I just kept taking the pitcher in, filling it with ice and ladling more tea.

Hope that helps get you started and wasn't too rambling - you can see that no one is going to ask me to write a cookbook anytime soon......

9 comments:

eva said...

Thank You for recipe - it sounds and looks so delicious. I have a question - is there big difference in apple mint and peppermint? Is there any other name for apple mint maybe? I have never heard it before....

Rachelle said...

Yum! I'm going to try it too!

abbey753 said...

Step, thanks for the recipe and the pictures of the process of making it are lovely I can't wait to try this

Steph said...

Well, this is interesting. I looked it up on Wikipedia. It is native to Southern and Western Europe and does not go by other names. I would have said it was more similar to spearmint in smell and taste than to peppermint and Wikipedia noted that as well. They also cautioned that large quantities of the essential oil can be dangerous for pregnant women. They noted the edible portions of the plant to be the leaves, but my mother has always steeped leaves and stems together, so use your own judgment there if you make some.

Beck said...

Oh, I'd WONDERED what was in it - it looked magical!

eva said...

Thank You, Stephanie!

Tricia said...

you've inspired me to make this. i'm growing mint but it's still small so i have to wait a month.

Tracey said...

BIG yum! I am so excited (and honored) to have access to this recipe. Thanks so much, Steph!

Athena's Armoury said...

Sounds delicious!!