It is still obscenely hot here. I still do not have AC. But I found something I could bear to make.
I have two spearmint plants that grow like crazy – I cut them down to the roots about three weeks ago, and here they are again:
The insane heat that is slowly eroding my mental faculties (until my body adjusts like it has twice before – I’m still in the drama queen stage) has been wonderful for my plants, as long as I remember to water them generously at the coolest times of the day. My parsley is equally enthusiastic, as it is photo-bombing the corner.
For a long time I had no idea what to do with so much mint. I tried making failed mint sugar. I don’t like mojitos that much. Lamb is hard to come by. Finally I went: oh yeah… tea.
Mint iced tea is so refreshing it helps me come back to myself. Let’s go make tea. Let the ice cubes melt instead of you.
Mint Iced Tea
1/2 cup mint leaves, chopped or torn
4 c water
3 Tbsp black tea (I have orange pekoe on hand for chai purposes)
4 tsp sugar (raw sugar is particularly pleasant in this case)
Remove the leaves from the stalks and tear or chop roughly. Toss into a pot containing your 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Boil for five or ten minutes and remove from heat. I left the kitchen at this stage because oh my god I’m hot. Add the black tea leaves and give it a good stir. Leave to steep for two to three minutes and no more – no bitter tea!! Strain and add sugar. You want it to be slightly overly sweet; hot beverages taste sweeter than cold beverages with the same sugar content because chemistry and solutions. Let cool to room temperature. Store in the fridge after it has cooled. Don’t put hot tea in the fridge – it will bring up the temperature of the fridge, mess with your other stored items, and make your fridge work too hard. Patience.
When the tea has come down to room temperature (or later), pour over ice. Save a few ice cubs to rub all over the back of your neck. Make more ice for the future. Remember what it is like to be a rational individual for a few minutes. Savor the moment.