Iced tea. Is there anything more summer-y than that? I may be as pale as a moonlit snowscape and so firmly entrenched in work drudgery that summer holidays seem but a distant dream, but one sip of my homebrewed iced tea has the magical ability to transport me to the land of never-ending summers. You know, the fake one in my head? You're free to come visit any time of course, we welcome any and all tourists to Summertopia.
TheHusband broached the topic of summer plans this morning on our way to work. While he dreams of days spent at the beach, soaking up the rays and braving the icy-cold Cape waters, I'm much more keen on days lazing on my butt, perhaps with a good book or three. Clearly, some compromise is needed.
Look, it's not that I have a problem with the beach, per se, but unfortunately I was not genetically gifted with the kind of skin that turns a lovely golden brown when exposed to the sun. (TheHusband, I'm looking at you - Not.Fair.) No, instead, I diligently schmear on my SPF100 (no jokes - this exists and I have a tube buried in the back of my cupboard) only to find that my skin has still managed to turn a delightful shade of pink at the end of the day. *Sigh*
Talking about delightful shades of pink - would you look at this rose syrup infused iced tea? Glorious, isn't? I've been making my own iced tea for a few years now, experimenting with both citrus-y and mint-y flavours (apparently I'm rather unique in my strange obsession with mint - hohum), but have somehow never given much thought to any other flavours.
Until I spotted the bottle of bright pink rose syrup in my local supermarket. Why hello there, why have I not seen you before? And yes okay, before you start throwing bricks and foodie tomes at me, the brilliant colour is the result of artificial additives. But hey, you're not using bucket loads at once and besides - it's so pretty! Looks may not be everything, but I dare you not to prance around like the hostess with the mostest when you present your summer guests with a pitcher of this ruby-red tea, studded with quartered lemons and ice cubes.
Oh, and just in case you were thinking this iced tea was all beauty and no substance (like some people that springs to mind *ahem*), let me assure you, the exquisite taste and smell matches its appearance perfectly. Just ask my good friends, D & E, who couldn't get enough of it on a recent weekend visit and practically begged me for the recipe. D - hope you enjoy this one!
Rose Syrup Iced TeaA Creative Pot originalMakes 2 litres
This is a thirst quencher of note and will provide you with the perfect fuel for all those lazy summer afternoons ahead of us.
6 rooibos tea bags2 cups (500ml) boiling water6 tbsp sugar3 lemons
10 tbsp rose syrup6 cups (1.5 litres) ice cold water
1. Place tea bags in a large jug (1.6 litre capacity at least). Pour boiling water over tea bags and stir sugar into the tea to dissolve.2. Microwave lemons for about 30 - 40 seconds to release the juices, then halve them, scoop out the pips and squeeze juice into the jug of tea. Toss lemon halves into the jug as well and allow to steep for about 5 - 10 minutes along with the tea bags.3. Remove teabags and lemon halves, scraping out the flesh and adding it to the tea. You may choose to keep your tea pulp-free, in which case just omit the last step. Personally, I'm a pulp lover and think it adds to the homemade feel of this tea.4. Add rose syrup to the tea, stirring to combine, then fill the jug with ice cold water. Chill before serving.
Keeps well in fridge for a week or two.If you are unable to find rooibos tea, feel free to substitute with other mildly flavoured herbal teas. I have tried both chamomile and vanilla, both of which added a subtle, but delicious layer of flavour to the tea.