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My husband really loves iced tea.

I really don’t.

He buys cans and cans and cans of it at the market (and the gas station, and the party store…).  The packaging says things like “home-brewed!” and “with natural flavorings!” and every can has a picture of some ancient golfer holding a lemon.  I really don’t get it.  I do get the feeling, however, that this is not what the British had in mind when they brought their national beverage of choice to the New World, but in some places more than others, tea has really caught on.

It is my understanding that in the Deep South, tea is always sweet, and is served over ice with nearly every meal.  Here in the Great Lakes region, however, tea is either served in a tiny gauze bag next to a hot cup of water and a limp lemon wedge, or artificial-raspberry-and-high-fructose-corn-syrup-flavored and straight out of spigot number three on the Coke© dispenser.

Perhaps one day global warming will bring some tropical temperatures up to the Mitten, but I think the likelihood of the southern tea tradition making its way north is a little more realistic  …Sorry, Al Gore.

Me?  Like I said, I’m not much of an iced tea drinker.

Okay, so I love a good book and a hot cup of black tea on a cold afternoon, or a chilled bottle of green tea with honey for a refreshing alternative to boring old water, and nothing is better than a steaming chai latte on a crisp fall morning, but iced tea just doesn’t really do it for me, especially with all the other bolder beverage options out there.

Sorry, Iced Tea… You’re the boring, sweet-but-not-so-special, plain-looking middle child that doesn’t really command my attention in a room full of stronger drinks.

Don’t be mad, you’re just not my type.

Mr. Dish loves you, however, and I can’t just let the man blow our childrens’ college funds on cans of processed sugar-with-artificial-tea-flavoring all the time.  I worked hard last summer to come up with an iced tea recipe that suited his fancy, both to protect his waistline and our budget.  This one makes about a week’s worth of summery tea goodness… not too sweet, not too citrusy, and no need to be left resting in the sun to breed bacteria.

I’ll even venture as far as to say that I gave it a chance, and while it won’t be upstaging my chai latte habit any time soon… it wasn’t half bad.


Home-Brewed Iced Tea

12 cups of water

1.5 cups of sugar

8 Luzianne teabags

1 tablespoon of lemon juice

Bring the water to boil in a large stock pot.  Add sugar and stir till completely dissolved; bring back to a boil.  Add lemon juice and teabags, give a quick stir, cover and remove from heat.  Steep for 30-40 minutes.  Remove teabags and allow to cool.

Pour mixture into a clean gallon jug and add cold water to fill.  Shake, refrigerate, and serve over ice.

Enjoy!

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