The hot days of summer are here and the perfect beverage is iced tea. It can be served sweet, or plain, flavored in endless ways and always refreshing. I love to serve herbal tea as something a little different. One of my favorite recipes are a mash up of the herbs growing in my garden. You can't really go wrong with any of these, but here is my secret family recipe. You would be served an icy glass of this if you ever make it to our farm:
Herbal Summer Tea
From The Farming Wife
1 cup dried red raspberry leaves
1 cup dried nettle leaves
1/4 cup dried mint leaves
Mix these dried herbs and keep them in a jar. Use 1/4 cup per quart of water and steep until it's the strength you love. This recipe really shines as an icy cold tea. It's loved by everyone in the family and tastes great sweet or not.
June is National Iced Tea month, and the Tea Council of the U.S.A., INC shared some tea facts about tea drinkers you may find interesting:
A Dark Frosty Brew. 69% of black tea drinkers enjoy their tea iced, and 66% enjoy it hot. More black tea drinkers prefer a dark brew to a light brew (24% vs. 18%).
Iced Tea-Drinking Nation. Despite the stereotype, Midwesterners are more likely than Southerners to drink their tea iced (74% to 68%). But, one southern tradition does remain true – southern tea drinkers are more likely to reach for the sugar than people in any other part of the country (53% vs. 42%).
GuaranTEAd Crowd Pleaser. Millennials are just as likely as their older counterparts to drink tea (83% vs. 82%). They are also more likely than older generation tea drinkers to drink green tea on the go (34% vs. 19%), at a tea shop (24% vs. 12%), on their commute (23% vs. 10%), at an event (19% vs. 10%), in nature (19% vs. 10%) or at a spa (12% vs. 7%).
StereoTEAypes. Millennials are more likely than older generations to associate tea drinkers with being younger as opposed to older (45% vs. 30%), male as opposed to female (32% vs. 24%), and loud as opposed to soft-spoken (23% vs. 18%).
Health-Conscious Craving. More Millennials than Gen-Xers, Boomers or Traditionalists are likely to drink tea to do something good for their body (47% vs. 41%), boost their immune system (41% vs. 31%), or maintain a healthy weight (32% vs. 22%).
Peter Goggi, President of the Tea Council of the USA recommends sipping plenty of tea this summer to stay cool, refreshed and healthy. According to Goggi, "There are many different types of teas available to suit each taste preference, and the amount of quality research being done on tea continues to support the idea that drinking tea can be a fulfilling, healthy addition to your diet."