On a hot day, one of my favorite treats is a cool summer drink. I’m always guzzling water, but sometimes I crave a little more flavor. What I don’t want, however, is all the extra calories that traditional juices and sodas can bring. When it comes to sprucing up my chilled drinks, I find inspiration from seasonal ingredients at my farmers’ market — fruits, herbs, you name it. Plop a few in some home-brewed tea or spritzer and you’ve got a delicious treat. Here are two recipes to try.
4 mint leaves
1/2 lime (juice and zest)
6 ounces of seltzer
Place berries and mint in glass. Muddle to release juice and oil. Add lime zest and juice. Place juiced lime in glass container. Muddle to mix. Add ice and seltzer. Stir and enjoy! Makes a single serving.
As you probably know, teas are packed with flavonoids and antioxidants that are beneficial to our bodies. (Read more about tea HERE.) There are so many types and flavors — green, white, oolong and red to name a few — that there’s lots of room for creativity. I really like jazzing up white teas with citrus fruits and herbs. Fruits are naturally sweet so there’s no need to add extra sugar (which means extra, non-nutritious calories).
How many people, like me, grew up drinking Sun Tea? It was a summer classic. Unfortunately, Sun Tea is considered unsafe by the CDC because there’s a risk for bacterial growth. That doesn’t mean you have to go without slow-brewed tea.
To make refrigerator tea, take a large pitcher and fill it with water. Add 4 teabags (your choice of brand and flavor) per quart of water. Refrigerate for 6 hours. Strain and remove teabags and serve with a dash of your favorite natural or no-calorie sweetener.
For some extra flare:
• Add herbs (mint, basil, rosemary, etc.)
• Add fruit (melon, citrus and berries are my favorite)
- Read More:
- Why We Love Tea
- Why We Love Herbal Tea
- Have You Tried These Natural Sweeteners?
- Tips & Recipes for Lighter Iced Tea