Hopefully your garden is planted, your flowerpots are filled up and all the mulching is done! Time to enjoy one of the great summer pleasures – sipping some old-fashioned sun brewed tea, from our Handled Mason Jar Mugs served from our Beverage Dispensers, of course!
Here in Lancaster County we call this summer treat – meadow tea. We recently shared some of these recipes with our local newspaper, but we wanted to make sure all our fans (local or not) had the chance to enjoy some meadow tea.
First, you need to start with mint. We’ve chosen to grow peppermint, apple mint, and curly mint, but there are many varieties of mint available. You can see, by this picture of the mint plants at Ken’s Gardens in Lancaster, that the choices are abundant.
- Cut often so that the plants don’t sprawl. This also helps produce fresh new growth.
- It spreads quickly! Plant it in a pot to help keep it from overtaking your garden.
- Read this and this from Small Kitchen Garden for more information about growing mint.
- Clean your mint leaves thoroughly before steeping for tea.
4 cups water (bring to a boil)
1 quart Mint Tea leaves/stem (rinsed & firmly packed)
3 – 5 cups sugar (we sometimes get away with 2 cups)
- Add the tea leaves to the boiling water, remove from heat and let steep for 45 minutes to an hour, checking occasionally to ensure that leaves are fully submerged in the water.
- Strain out the tea leaves, add sugar and stir thoroughly until sugar has dissolved.
- This concentrate may be poured into freezer safe containers for later or prepared for enjoyment as soon as it cools. If freezing, read our post about freezing in jars.
- For serving, mix 1 part concentrate plus 2 parts water.
This one is a family favorite! The concentrate can be used right away, or frozen for enjoyment later!
2.5 cups water
1.5 cups sugar
12 oz. lemonade concentrate
6 oz. orange juice concentrate
2 cups mints leaves
- Boil water & sugar for 5 minutes
- Pour over leaves
- Cover for 1 hour
- Remove & squeeze leaves, add lemonade & orange juice concentrate.
- You can make this a couple of days ahead of time, refrigerate and mix for your event or pour it in freezer safe containers.
- When you’re ready to enjoy it, simply add 3 cups water to 1 cup of the concentrate and mix well.
Mint Tea Syrup (From our Auntie Doris)
This is a great option if you’ve got limited refrigerator space – a batch of this will provide you with refreshing mint tea by the glass on demand!
2 cups sugar and 1 quart water – boil for 5 minutes
2 cups chopped mint
3 lemons juice & rinds
- Pour boiling syrup over tea & lemon and let stand for 6 hours.
- Strain out the tea leaves and pour the syrup into a glass jar, cap it, refrigerate it.
- When using this concentrate, the usual ratio is 1 part syrup to 2 parts water, or to taste.
We found some other refreshing minty creations on Yummly.
A good drink always tastes better in glass, or shall we say a Mason jar. Top it with a pretty jar topper and a fun paper straw and you are set. We have a wide variety of lids and straws for any kind of drink.
For more ideas on making, brewing, presenting, and serving drinks – check out our Mason Jar Drinks Pinterest board.