Being from the South I love my tea. Making a batch of sun tea has always intrigued me. The first thing I had to do was find a sun tea jar. What seemed like a simple task turned out to be an unexpected treasure hunt. I went here and there thinking This store has to have one with no luck. Finally, I came across the perfect jar that wasn’t even meant for what I wanted but it works. It’s an oversized Ball jar from Target.
The second problem I had to solve was what tea I should make. I started searching for flavor ideas online until something came to mind. Through my search I came across a lot of people talking about the dangers of sun tea. I never heard of these dangers so I read what they had to say. Basically, use purified or distilled water, keep the tea in a hot direct sunlight the entire time, and don’t leave it out longer than necessary (a few hours should suffice). Follow these rules and your tea won’t become infested with bacteria and make you sick.
After sifting through my research I decided upon green tea, decaffeinated of course, flavored with cinnamon and orange, and sweetened with a bit of agave nectar.
- 1 gallon of purified or distilled water at room temperature
- 8 bags of decaffeinated green tea (or regular tea if you want more flavor)
- 2 oranges, peeled and sliced
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon agave nectar or sugar (more if you’d like or none at all)
- Fill jar with water.
- Add oranges, cinnamon, and agave. Mix.
- Add tea bags. Cover jar with lid or plastic wrap and a rubber band.
- Set out in direct sunlight for 3 hours.
- Leave tea bags in and refrigerate until tea is chilled. Then you can discard the bags.
- Enjoy while sitting in a rocking chair on your porch watching the clouds roll by (this step optional).
Green tea offers a very mild flavor. I love green tea but this was just not strong enough for me. Next time I will try it with regular tea. Those orange slices sure are tasty though. They soaked up a lot of the cinnamon flavor along with the tea. They will make a nice addition to a hearty breakfast in the morning.
Want something better to do with those orange peels you cut off besides throwing them out? Adding them to the compost would be a good option, if you have one. I on the other hand decided to use them to naturally add a lovely fragrance to our home. All I did was put them in a pot of water, added a dash of cinnamon, and let it simmer. It’s not all that strong but the kitchen smells great.