Herbs forum: Do you have a favorite Sun Tea recipe using fresh herbs?

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Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
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SongofJoy
Jul 12, 2011 8:55 AM CST
I don't know how many gallons of Sun Tea we consume each summer. I make it several times a week. I would love to hear your favorite Sun Tea/Ice Tea recipes using fresh herbs.

My current favorite is:
Gallon jar of water
2 double black tea bags
6 or 7 Green or White tea bags
crushed sprigs of fresh Mojito Mint

Steep the above in the sun for several hours until it is the strength you prefer. Add the juice of one freshly squeezed lemon and some Stevia to taste.

Enjoy!! Hurray!
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
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threegardeners
Jul 12, 2011 9:31 AM CST
What do you think of the Stevia?
I tried this year for the first time and can't get used to it. It isn't really sweet while you're drinking it, more of a sweet aftertaste,,,still undecided here...
Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
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SongofJoy
Jul 12, 2011 11:21 AM CST
I use an organic brand of Stevia, and it doesn't seem to have much of an aftertaste. I grew Stevia herb last year for the first time but couldn't determine if I could use the crushed leaves as a sweetener. Maybe someone else knows if that's possible? However, I am personally not opposed to a little sugar. Big Grin
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
[Last edited by SongofJoy - Jul 13, 2011 6:03 AM (+)]
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Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
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gardengus
Jul 12, 2011 6:43 PM CST
I have grown stevia for many years. Yes, you can use the leaves , I use them in my loose leaf(hot) tea all the time.
I think the easiest way to use it in ice tea is to drop fresh leaves into simmering water and turn off the heat and let it set , when cool just add, like simple syrup, to taste.
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Name: Susan
Zone 5b (Zone 5b)

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gardenersdetective
Jul 12, 2011 9:17 PM CST
Thanks Cinda I've always wanted to know how to use fresh stevia as a sweetener.
Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
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SongofJoy
Jul 13, 2011 6:04 AM CST
Me too. Thanks! Hurray!
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Jul 24, 2011 2:03 PM CST
Mojito Mint...I like it! I usually add mint before drinking tea...but don't do sun tea...probably should, since we definitely have an over-supply of sun (reminded of that every time I go in for my twice-a-year skin cancer checkup).
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
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Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
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SongofJoy
Jul 24, 2011 2:08 PM CST
Have you gotten any relief there in Texas?
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Jul 24, 2011 4:10 PM CST
No REAL rain in a while at my place. Forecast shows just under 100° for entire forecast locally...just grateful that I live in the hills, which keeps temps down a bit. Nearby San Antonio has forecast of 101° to 102° every day until next weekend.
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Cat Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Birds
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SongofJoy
Jul 25, 2011 5:36 AM CST
Our forecast here yesterday was for 102º but the cloud cover kept the temp down a bit. Today is cooler and hopefuly some rain. We're beginning to need it. Sticking tongue out
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: Sheryl
Hot, hot, hot, Feenix, AZ (Zone 9b)
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sheryl
Aug 15, 2011 8:13 PM CST
So, have any of you who now grow Stevia had the powdered form too? That's the only kind I have tried and I can't get beyond the after taste. I'd really like to get away from artificial sweeteners, but.....

Any diff in taste, you think?
In the end, only kindness matters.

Science is not the answer, it is the question.


Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Cat Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Birds
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SongofJoy
Aug 16, 2011 4:22 AM CST
I use an organic powdered form of Stevia made by NOW Company that doesn't have much of an aftertaste to me. But, then, artificial sweeteners have the aftertaste for me. Maybe it's just whichever you get accustomed to. I have tried several brands of Stevia that I don't particularly like. I'm all ears!
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: bit bit
Baltimore County, MD (Zone 7a)
A bit of this and a bit of that
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bitbit
Aug 19, 2011 5:51 AM CST
I've grown stevia for several years. There is a bit of a sweet aftertaste I guess, but I much prefer it to the bitter aftertaste I get from other sweeteners. I think it's a matter of preference.

I make an extract of stevia in alcohol, it's strong enough that I just need to add a few drops to a cup of tea. I also sometimes add the leaves to my tea before brewing it (either hot or sun tea).
Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Cat Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Birds
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SongofJoy
Aug 19, 2011 7:14 AM CST
How do you make the extract in the alcohol?
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: bit bit
Baltimore County, MD (Zone 7a)
A bit of this and a bit of that
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Herbs
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bitbit
Aug 19, 2011 9:43 AM CST
I pull a bunch of leaves off their stems (enough to fill a pint jar, but you could use less), then either bruise them using a mortar and pestle and add them to the alcohol, or add both to the blender and whirr a bit. The mortar and pestle makes the final product clearer, but the blender is a lot less work. You only need enough booze to cover the leaves in the jar (it won't be quite full, because the bruising process makes the leaves smaller). I use cheap vodka, but any strong alcohol without a lot of flavor would do - the alcohol is more effective than water at pulling the sweet chemical out of the leaves, and it also preserves the extract. I let it sit for about a week, then use a cheesecloth to remove the leaves and squeeze all the liquid from them. If I used the blender, some tiny leaf bits will pass through the cheesecloth and settle at the bottom of the jar, they don't hurt anything other than looking weird. Then I just keep the jar in my kitchen to use as needed. I add about a teaspoon of it to my half-gallon tea pitcher or for a cup of tea, I just kinda dip the spoon in and then stir my tea with it - it's strong stuff, so it's easy to use too much.
Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Cat Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Birds
Image
SongofJoy
Aug 19, 2011 12:38 PM CST
Sounds great! Thanks so much for the instructions! I'm going to try that one of these days. Smiling
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller

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