One of the first things I liked about living in the South was the ability to go into a restaurant and order an “ice tea” and they assumed I wanted it sweet (they would usually ask to just to make sure). My no-sweetener-of-any-kind husband, on the other hand, had to make some adjustments 🙂
One of the most surprising things I found about living in the South was how many people bought sweet tea at the store or restaurants by the gallon instead of making it. I can’t believe it every time I see a person paying 3 dollars a gallon for sweet tea at the grocery store. I can easily make it at home for just pennies a gallon. Plus, I think fresh tea tastes better.
Just as my mom made it, I make a simple tea syrup or concentrate first. Then, I add cold water to make it into a pitcher full.
The syrup can also be refrigerated and made up by the glass or smaller batches instead of having to store a large pitcher in the refrigerator.
The biggest problem I ever had in making iced tea, or anything requiring boiling water, was putting the tea kettle on and forgetting it. Even the whistling type did not prevent me from occasionally burning up the kettle.
After we spent way too much on kettles that did not last, my husband finally came up with a solution and invested just a little more than the cost of a kettle on and electric tea kettle. It is fantastic!! Not only does it automatically shut off when the water boils, it also heats up the water very fast.
Here is one similar to ours but a different brand that even has better reviews:
You can even get a version that keeps the water and has multiple heat settings for different types of tea.