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Here in the south sweet tea reigns supreme. It’s right up there with southern fried chicken, grits, and collards. Sweet tea washes everything down and you’ll find it on just about every family table, in every restaurant, and of course, in the hands of folks sittin’ on their front porches catching glimpses of fireflies on summer evenings. It’s true!

I love making sweet teas with various infused simple syrups.  I make it for my literary ladies book club each month, for tea parties (that’s very southern you know) and just about anytime I feel like it. It’s really very simple — hence the name. All you do is bring water and sugar to a boil over medium high heat, stir and let simmer until the sugar dissolves completely and a syrup forms. Keep in mind that the syrup will thicken as it cools.

Sweet Tea Tips

1. Pick your favorite tea. Use any tea that you think would taste great cold. I love using herbal and fruit teas. I recently made this black cherry tea for my ladies book club. I served it with my salted caramel brownies. Cherries and chocolate are like salt and pepper. They are perfect together.

2. Make a simple syrup using equal parts of granulated sugar and water, and by golly, you have the perfect sweetener for some good old sweet tea!

Black Cherry Sweet Tea

3. I love using my imagination to make infused simple syrups. I add warm spices like cinnamon sticks, anise star pods, whole nutmeg, cardamon seeds or fresh basil leaves, or the caviar from a vanilla bean (I throw that pod in there while I’m at it) orange, lemon or apple slices, or a nice piece of ginger to the water and sugar.

 

Infused Simple Syrups add wonderful flavor to sweet teas, coffees and desserts.

Infused Simple Syrups add wonderful flavor to sweet teas, coffees and desserts.

 

This post is part of the Food Network Summer Soiree series. Just take a look at all of these yummy beverage recipes from some very imaginative bloggers. Join the conversation by using the hashtag #SummerSoiree

Feed Me Phoebe: Healthy Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie with Cacao Nibs
Poet in the Pantry: Strawberry Lemonade (Sweetened with Pure Maple Syrup)
Dishin & Dishes: Summertime Basil Lemonade
Jeanette’s Healthy Living: Frozen Mango Lemonade Mocktail
Dishing With Divya: Thandai
Virtually Homemade: Strawberry Soda with Lime
The Lemon Bowl: Banana Licuado (Mexican Smoothie)
Weelicious: Mermaid Deep Sea Punch
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Mango Lassi
Devour: 5 Booze-Free Picnic Sips
Taste With The Eyes: Roasted Barley-Corn Tea
Domesticate Me: Vegan “Orange Julius” Smoothie
Daily*Dishin: Sweet Balsamic Spritzers
FN Dish: Refreshing Summer Drinks for the Whole Family

 

Black Cherry Sweet Tea with Spiced Simple Syrup

Black Cherry Sweet Tea with Spiced Simple Syrup

 

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Black Cherry Sweet Tea

Black Cherry Sweet Tea
Prep Time:
5
min
Cook Time:
10
min
Total Time:
15 min

Here in the south sweet tea reigns supreme. I love making sweet teas with various infused simple syrups all the time. Here I’ve used anise seed pods to infuse my simple syrup.

SERVES 8

Ingredients

3 bags black cherry tea

8 cups of water

INFUSED SIMPLE SYRUP

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup water

2 to 3 anise seed pods

Instructions

  1. Place 8 cups of water in a kettle or a large pan. Add the tea bags. Bring water to a boil, turn off the heat and let sit for at least two hours. The longer the tea bags sit in the water the stronger your sweet tea will be.
  2. In a saucepan bring to a boil water, sugar and anise seed pods. Let simmer until the sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture thickens. Remember that it will thicken as it sits.
  3. Place tea in the beverage container of your choice. Remove the anise seed pods and pour in your infused simple syrup. Stir and chill. I used pretty mason jars and added a cherry for garnish.

Enjoy!

Elise xo