It’s the time of the year where the weather is too hot to have a hot tea and yet we cannot miss out on having tea. The easy solution is a COLD BREW TEA, do not mistake cold brewed teas for ICEDTEAs that are readily available in the market. Iced teas are made by hot brewing a strong tea and later blending them with loads of ice, sugar syrups and optional garnishes. It’s no secret that all the commercially available ready to consume iced teas are loaded with artificial flavors, preservatives and sugar syrups, hence its better we avoid them.
Coldbrew tea is rather a simple process which can be made at home. The concept of cold brewing is a little different from hot brewing the tea. Hot brewing of teas is a quick method and the drink usually tends to get bitter in case we infuse it for long time, whereas the cold brews can be smooth and tasty , the longer it brewed. Cold brew tea is much lighter and subtle when compared to the hot brew teas.
How do we make a Cold brew
- Use a clean container, preferably glass or other food safe container which is clean and doesn’t have a strong smell.
- Have filtered water
- Have a strainer
- Limit the time the tea is held at room temperature. Refrigerate immediately
The general tea-to-water ratio is 3gms of loose-leaf tea for half a liter of fresh, normal water. Allow the tea to infuse for at least 1 hour at room and temperature and later can refrigerate to infuse for a further 6 to 8 hours. Post that we can strain the leaves and the cold brewed tea is ready. The brewing time may vary with the variety of tea we are using. As a general guideline, green, black and white teas can be brewed for 2-4 hours while herbals teas can be brewed for a little longer, 6-8 hours.
A mere simple addons like fresh or frozen fruit such as lemon, orange, lime, muddled berries, diced peaches, mangoes, cucumber, blueberries and mint can make the drink even more interesting.
Cold brewed teas can also be used to make some refreshing summer cocktails and lemonades. There are many recipes online if one wants try.
Characteristic of Cold Brew Tea
Cold brew teas are usually have a jewel like transparent melon yellow or warm amber color, depending on the type of tea we use. Next, you will notice the amazing flavor. This is where cold brewed tea dramatically differs from regular hot tea or “iced” tea. The cold brewed tea is sweet and soothing. While cold brewed tea still contains caffeine, it is much less than regular hot tea or iced tea. Cold brewed tea also low on tannins hence are less astringent which makes the drink naturally sweet.
Protip : brew the tea at least for an hour at room temperature and then refrigerate the drink for further brewing in cold conditions.