I hate to waste things. When I watch cooking shows, it drives me crazy that the chefs taste one bite, and then the rest goes to waste. Of course, not everything can be saved (Yes, experimental sugar-water drenched pound cake I tried, today . . . I am looking at you). However, this recipe was actually born of some leftover orange simple syrup I made while I was making sugar glazed orange slices. I had this gorgeous, citrusy syrup left over, and I thought, “There must be something tasty I can make with that.” And this recipe is the result.
What are we waiting for? Let’s do this!
Citrus Mint Tea
1 cup water
1 cup white sugar
1 orange, thinly sliced
1-2 drops peppermint extract
2 black tea bags
Bring sugar and water to a boil. Drop in thinly sliced orange and peppermint extract and boil for 1 minute. Turn off heat, add tea bags to water, and allow syrup to come to room temperature while the teabags steep. When you are ready to serve, dilute the mixture with water, to taste (I used about 1 cup syrup with 3/4 cup water), and serve over ice. Congratulate yourself that something so delicious is also so easy. And don’t ever tell your friends how easy it was. Accept their worship. You deserve it.
Now, in pictures! 🙂
This is one of the most refreshing, easiest recipes you will ever try. It’s a great “tag-along” for a summer picnic– just combine the simple syrup with your icewater, and voila . . . refreshing minty citrus beverages for everyone! I think you just won the picnic thrower of the year award. Wait . . . that isn’t an award? It should be.
To start making the syrup, bring your sugar and water to a boil. While the water is heating, thinly slice an orange so that it’s ready to take a dip in the hot tub when the water heats up. When the water boils, throw your orange slices and a drop or two of peppermint extract into the water. Boil this mixture for about a minute, and then turn off the heat.
I am using 2 teabags, but if you like your tea stronger, you can add another teabag. Just let the teabags steep in the water as it comes back down to room temperature.
What you have when this beautiful mixture has cooled is actually a sweet syrup. This means that you need to dilute the syrup a little bit, with water, to get a nice, refreshing drink. I used about 1 cup of syrup mixed with 3/4 cup water. However, everyone’s tastes are different, so I suggest that you start with 1 cup of syrup and then add water until you like the way it tastes. Keep in mind, too, that the tea will dilute a little bit when you add ice, so make it a “squidge” sweeter than you like if you plan to serve over ice.
There really isn’t anything more refreshing than a tall, icy glass of tea with a twist of citrus and mint. Bring this sweet surprise to your next summer BBQ and enjoy quenching your thirst by the grill, while icy droplets roll down your glass. Smile to yourself, realizing that everyone thinks you spent all day preparing this. Give an evil chuckle inside. 😉
And you can even get a channel knife (the cheapest I could find was about 8 bucks here) to put adorable little citrus corkscrew thingamajiggies (called “twists,” which I guess sounds better than “thingamajiggies”) on your glasses, when you’re ready to serve. Who would have thought that something left over could be so refreshing?
You did it. And I’m just so proud of you.
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