Simplicity or just plain Stupidity ?

What is SO hard about this??

What is SO hard about this??

I can not make Iced Tea.    Yes, you read it right.    Hi, my name is Kelli, and   I. can. not. make. Iced. Tea. Period      There, I have openly admitted it.  I feel much better.  :)

I can make Iced Coffee, Cherry Limeade, Laundry soap, body lotion, etc etc etc…..yet, to make a refreshing  glass of Iced Tea in this house???   no can do.   So…..this time it is I that needs help!!!  please???

I want to know.

Lipton, Luzianne, store generic brand or other?????

Coffee pot brewed, iced tea maker brewed, old fashioned Sun Tea, or Cold brew tea???

I know, you would think I am an idiot.  I SIMPLY can not believe it myself, but I have tried pretty much every way I can think of and it never tastes good.  I even have reverse osmosis pure water on tap, and it is still yuck.   I do like my tea on the strong side.  Not sickeningly strong, but not discolored water either, and I generally use Sweet-n- Low in it.

There is a restaurant in Osky that has the BEST iced tea ever.  Tasos.  I could literally go in there and inhale their tea.  Sometimes it is the only reason I want to eat there, just to drink their tea!!!  :)   lol.  I am also VERY particular about the shape and size of my ice cubes ( I know, I have a “few” hang-ups)  but this place gets it right on all accounts!!!

Too bad the place is closed now, as I am getting VERY thristy!!!

and the REAL reason I want help, is I am a complete addict to Diet Coca-Cola (Cherry Vanilla) with just the “right” ice cubes of course , and it is getting MUCH more expensive that my frugal dutch personality wants to pay…..and iced tea is so cheap, it might as well be FREE  !!!!!!!   I could save plenty of money, and basically always have it on hand, if I could just FIGURE OUT HOW TO MAKE IT RIGHT!!!   grrrrrr

Post your comments this time to help ME out…..pretty please???   I promise the next post, I will go back to helping YOU out again.  :)

33 Responses to “Simplicity or just plain Stupidity ?”

  1. Gina L Says:

    You are on your own there sister! The only thing I am making here in NC is Southern Sweet Tea, and there ain’t no way we are using sweet n low.
    But there is no substitution for sweet iced tea, when you have to have it. I was visiting my sister in Seattle, when we went out to a restaurant I ordered sweet tea. What I received was a steaming hot glas of water with a teabag???!!!
    You might as well have told me “there ya go Fraeulein make it your own dang self”. My husband is still laughing to this day about this.
    I have used different teas to achieve the best sweet tea, and there are differences, believe you me. I found Lipton to be the best overall, it doesn’t have many bitter after tastes. Recently we gotten an Aldi store, which I am used to from Germany, they offer generic products often at a great discount, and I found their tea, which costs about 50 cents less per family pack to be every bit as good tasting as Liptons. But in case you do not have an Aldi store, go with Liptons.
    For one gallon of sweet southern tea I use 3 teabags, boil water on stove once it starts boiling i shut it off, and let the tea steep for like 15 to 20 minutes with a lid on it. The tea now has the nice rich full flavor that we like. I get my gallon size jug, I put in 1 1/2 cups of sugar and add hot tea, dissolving sugar. I usually will make less than the gallon I need since here is my trick, I fill up the rest of tea with ice cold filtered britta water, give it a good stir and off in the fridge it goes. We love drinking it just like this every day. I go through one gallon of sweet southern tea daily. Some people add ice to theirs, we don’t.
    If the kids are not coming I will also add 2 tablespoons of lemonjuice, but since one of them is always here for supper lately husband if he wants lemon has to squeeze some in himself.
    Perfect ice cubes? is there a story?

    • simplyaltered Says:

      I have a customer from the south and he has told me all about genuine good old sweet tea!!! he loves it and says you can only get it in the south!! LOL I am glad you enjoy it and sounds like you have it down to a science!!! 🙂

    • simplyaltered Says:

      and yes, there IS a story on the perfect ice cubes!!! oh I am a deal huh?? maybe I will devote the next post to the perfect ice cubes. hahaha!!!!

  2. bejes Says:

    Well now that you have me craving tea, guess I will be making some soon. My favorite tea is sun tea FOR SURE! I have one of those big glass jugs with the spout at the bottom. I use Lipton Iced Tea Brew. I get the family size tea bags. Use 3 of them in a full jug of water. Set outside for at least 4 hours. Depending on how sunny it is, it may need to go longer (in Doobie, I am guessing I could make a jug in about 15 minutes) Any way, you can check the color and basically tell when it is as strong as you like it. Take the bags out when done outside and put in fridge. The box tells you to only keep it 24 hours but it does last longer. Or maybe it won’t at your house🙂 I would not suggest the cold brew bags to you if you like it a little stronger. I always drink mine before it gets very strong. ENJOY!

    • simplyaltered Says:

      this sounds just about right, and maybe if I used 4 then it would be strong enough??? might have to get me another one of those jugs. I have one a hundred years ago, when I was able to make decent tea. I wonder what happened??? :O

  3. Judy Says:

    Lipton has some HUGE tea bags used for iced tea in COLD water. I think it tastes great . I have become kind of hooked this summer on Crystal Light
    Peach Iced Tea . Wonderful, wonderful summer drink. There are usually coupons around for Crystal Light, too.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      we have tried the fruit punch sort of drinks from Crystal Light, but never the tea ones. Maybe this is an easy solution I can also look into??

  4. ambjour Says:

    i make mine JUST LIKE bejes. exactly! and i use lipton brand. the ice cube thing………come on kel?? 🙂

    • simplyaltered Says:

      oh the ice thing??? you can only IMAGINE how this plays out!!! Three places I can not STAND their ice is Applebees, Olive Garden and Wendys. !!!!! I know, I know, I need help. 🙂

      • bejes Says:

        OMG. Olive Garden does have stupid ice. I have choked on that shape before. OUCH!

      • simplyaltered Says:

        yeah, good thing Olive Garden has such good FOOD because they sure do not have the market on ice. 😉

  5. Robbie Says:

    My son came home from NH for a visit last week and one of the first things he wanted to do is make sun tea. I haven’t made it for years. He used 3 large tea bags (I had Luzianne) in the gallon jar and put it outside before I went to work. When I came home for lunch….voila! Great tea! Usually I brew mine in a tea pot then pour over ice. Brew no longer than 4 min. My fav drink of all.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      this sounds like what BeJes says too. I will need to explore this old fashioned way of making it once again……

  6. Julie Says:

    I’ve grown up on iced tea. When I was a kid it was instant Nestea at least twice a day — after chores in the morning and before chores in the afternoon (coffee time for those of you who are Dutch). That was always 1 heaping teaspoon per large glass. And always put the tea mix in before the water.

    I’ve moved up in the world, as now I’m not terribly fond of instant tea. However, I really like my iced tea maker and have excellent luck despite the very crummy water in Grinnell. I use one family sized tea bag per quart of water. If you like it strong, you can let the last little bit sit in the brewing portion of the pot a little extra before emptying it into the pitcher (at least mine works that way). If you don’t have the family sized tea bags, then use 3 regular tea bags per quart. Also, I don’t think the decaf tea bags have the same intensity of flavor — nor the cold brew bags.

    Oh, and I tend to use Luzianne tea bags — they’re cheaper and I like the taste just as well, if not better, than Lipton.

    Best of luck…from someone who appreciates a great glass of iced tea, I understand your quest and hope you get some good results.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      I now have a few different ways to try it again. I am so thirsty for it now, I can hardly stand it!!! haha. and to think I might have to let it sit all day in the sun before I can enjoy it??? oh man, anticipation!!! maybe I will just send my daughter to Tasos to get a glass to go for me!!! LOL

  7. Martha Says:

    I use the Luzienne brand – large bags. I take a 4 cup measuring cup and pour very cold water into it and put it in my microwave to boil. I then add 1 of the large bags and let it steep for 3 minutes. Take the tea bag out and let the tea sit at room temp for an hour and then put in the fridge or pour over ice and enjoy. This is the “recipe” from the tea box. I use splenda sweetener in my tea and enjoy it.

    I started making tea this way a couple of weeks ago – actually I finally read the box and I prefer it to sun tea – but that is just my preference. I make up a double batch each day.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      isn’t it funny. How many people have NEVER looked at the actual recipe on the box??? i know I would have never even thought to look there!! duh!!

  8. Becky Says:

    I have found that the Lipton Cold Brew tea works great!! It tastes like sun tea and all you have to do is put the bag in cold water….easy!! I usually put one big tea bag to 2 quarts of water…you can take out when it gets to the strength you like. The last 2 years I have found it at Sam’s club clearanced out CHEAP at the end of summer! I am really picky about my tea and this is the easiest & best I have found!

    • simplyaltered Says:

      thank GOODNESS that I am not the only picky one!!! and getting them at the end of summer is a GREAT idea. I am sure they have a long shelf life ???

  9. kim aka machita Says:

    well EVERYONE seems to think my iced tea is THEE BEST (just ask maddi or jane, maddi says it makes her smile!) i use a mr coffee tea pot, 7 small DECAF tea bags as i think the decaf tastes much much better and wah lah!! thee perfect iced tea. but you want to be very very careful what kind of ICE you use Kelli. I would suggest you just take a VERY LARGE cooler and run over to the hospital and get it lol lol lol lol lol or run to sonic and get some hahahahahahahaha

    PS…. for those of you who dont know kelli…. she can only tolerate certain ice cubes !!!! go figure.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      YES YES YES you do know me well!!!!! if I was to get a whole cooler of ice from the hospital, I would not even NEED a beverage to have with it!!!!! I would just eat the ice all day and night!! I wonder if they would call the cops if I filled up a cooler-full ?? I only EVER get hospital ice when someone is IN the hospital. {darn} !!! so I guess Sonic is a more doable option. 🙂 but 40 miles away!!! SUCH a dilemma!!!
      If I were to be offered ice cubes from Applebees in the middle of the dessert, I know I would rather go thirsty!! LOL LOL LOL
      (and for the record, just “general” Sonic ice is not that simple. Des Moines (Johnston) has better ice than the Ottumwa location….and the only good ice in the hospital is on the third floor, not on first floor in the cafeteria. Trust me, I have done my research on this. 🙂

  10. Connie Says:

    Most store-bought teas are “black” teas. My preference is “Oolong”. It has a wonderful taste and is used by many restaurants. I bought mine from “Wangs” in Oskaloosa. I think they charged me $5 for a big box. I like to steep my tea and then pour it directly over ice in the pitcher. Worth a shot if you are having trouble finding a black tea you like.

  11. simplyaltered Says:

    I am really glad to know this Connie!!! I am wondering if THIS is why iced tea always tastes better in restaurants?? I may look into trying some of this!!!!! Do they not sell this at grocery stores? regardless, $5 for a big box is not too bad, if it tastes good.

  12. Angie Says:

    This is hilarious! I thought I was the only one in Oskaloosa that did not and could not make ice-tea!!!! I have tried so many attemps but it just dosen’t taste right, I blame it on our water. Hee hee. Now smokey row has good tea too. But it is SO REFRESHING to finally meet another one out there *L*. You got many comments on this Kelli. Something told me you would. By the way, garage sale finds this past week……DRUM ROLL PLEASE. Green garden hose and Christmas light! Perfect for our week long camping trip coming up this coming week! Now who wants to help me take ALL the lights out of the strings (ha ha!)

    • simplyaltered Says:

      THANK YOU ANGIE!!! thanks for the reassurance that I am not the only one that can not make a drink that simply takes TWO ingredients!!! I was beginning to think I was losing it!!! now I know I am not. 😉 and I honestly stressed about this request for some time before I had the guts to post it!!!
      Good job on the garage sale finds too!!! I need to give you a list of the things I am on the hunt for. 🙂

  13. Diana W Says:

    I work in an oral surgery office and we have an ice machine that is fabulous. It crushes the ice just perfect to put in ice bags for the patients, but I do sneak it for my tea.

    I love McDonalds sweet tea, but when I make it at home, I use the Lipton Cold Brew. Fabulous with 3 bags to the 1/2 gallon.

    I do like the ladies sweet tea recipe in the above post, so guess what I’llbe drinking over the long weekend? Happy July 4th everyone. God Bless America!

  14. simplyaltered Says:

    Diana, you are SO lucky!!! I would definitely be taking my cooler to work!!! haha!!! filling it up each night at 5:00. LOL everyone thought I was crazy to have an ICE preference, but it is really NOT that crazy now is it?? {wink-wink}
    You have a great holiday weekend too, and …..when you fill up your glass with ice at work each time, think of ME !! I am jealous now. ha

  15. Tippy Says:

    P-pass on iced tea. YUCK! Scott makes a mean jug of it. . .maybe you could ask him.

  16. Diane Fynaardt Says:

    suntea is the best. I use regular lipton (because that is already here) or for a real treat Bigalow raspberry Royal. This gets the raves from company. i dont sweeten but splenda is my choice if i do.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      so, Diane, you just use the Bigelow raspberry and make it the SAME as you would sun tea??? I always have this misconception that flavored teas have to be served hot, but maybe not?? it sounds delicious if it can be served as iced tea!!

  17. Regina Says:

    Get yourself an iced tea maker (I got mine for a wedding present 15 years ago) and fill the brewer part with h2o (i use the tap water) and where you put the tea bags – i put in two luzianne bags and 1 bag of a flavor (you choose whichever you want) and we like to put in 4 pkt Sweet-N-Low and 4 pkt of Nutra Sweet since my husband is diabetic but the combo makes it nice. And viola!!!! MMMMMMMMMM! Making it in the iced tea maker takes about 10 min. Start to finish. Hope you enjoy it.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      I have never heard of mixing sweetners, but must be a good solution for you!!! diabetes is no fun.
      I thought whenever I used my tea maker, my tea seemed “cloudy”. Maybe it was just “me” and I need to give it another try?

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