Orange, Brown-Sugar Sweet Tea is going on!
I have fallen in love. I mean deeply, madly, exuberantly in love. This new love of mine is everything I want in a true love. It is subtly fresh but not inappropriately so; sweet, but not over-the-top syrupy. It brings to mind sunshine and all good things. It holds no bitterness, has perfect strength and keeps its cool. It is also easy on the eyes and smells heavenly.
My husband is reading over my shoulder and is wondering what the heck is going on. I better explain.
I thought long and hard deciding if I should share my new love, but I knew there was no way I could keep it to myself. I’m generous like that.
Here are the only tricky parts but really they aren’t that tricky.
Somewhat tricky part #1: Grab the vegetable peeler and an orange and let’s get started. Hold the orange firmly in one hand and, with the other hand, cut away the orange peel (the very outer, orange skin of the orange). If you get a little of the white peel, the pith (remind anyone of Ethel Thayer?) it isn’t a big deal.
Somewhat tricky part #2: “Muddling”. All it means, in this instance, is to mash an orange slice into the tea. Right before serving the tea, place one half of an orange slice in the bottom of each glass and muddle, or mash, the orange to release the juice and oils. Since I don’t own a muddler, I use the rounded end of my wooden spoon. Muddle with slight force; just a couple of pushes and twists should be enough.
Ok? Now quickly read and print all the instructions below to learn how to have this delicious drink for yourself; quickly now, before I change my mind about sharing. I promise this will be your next true love. I also promise this new love will bring sunshine into your life and never, ever break your heart.
Orange Brown Sugar Sweet Tea
- 2-4 family-size or 8 regular-size tea bags
- 8 cups water
- 2 oranges – outer peel only
- 1 orange to cut slices for garnishing
- ½-1 cup light brown sugar
- ice - crushed or cubed
- Using a vegetable peeler, peel each orange in a continuous spiral (if possible). Be careful to peel the outer orange-colored peel only. This is possible and easy once you get the correct angle with the vegetable peeler. If you accidentally get some of the white layer under the peel, no worries, but do try to cut off just the orange peel.
- Pour water into a large saucepan and add the tea bags and orange peel. Cover and bring the water to a boil, then immediately take the pan off the heat.
- Add brown sugar, stir and cover. Let the mixture steep (or rest) for 15-30 minutes.
- Remove the tea bags and orange peel. Let the tea cool to room temperature.
- To serve, place ½ orange slice in the bottom of each glass, then muddle the orange slice with the handle of a wooden spoon (see image) enough to release its juice and oil.
- Add ice then pour the orange-infused tea into the glasses.
- Garnish with orange slices and mint, if desired.