Southerners never tire of iced tea: summer, fall, winter and spring it is ordered in restaurants and made in homes--by the gallon! While usually enjoyed plain, either with or without sugar, this version adds the happy duo of vanilla and fresh mint, giving it a special sweetness from the vanilla and a slight tang from the mint.
- 12 tea bags
- 1 gallon water
- 1 1/2 cups sugar (granulated)
- 2 cups mint (fresh, loosely packed leaves, coarsely chopped)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla extract
Place twelve tea bags in a gallon-sized pitcher.
Boil about 1 quart (4 cups) of water and pour over tea bags. Allow to set for 20 minutes, then squeeze the bags into the pitcher to extract all the tea flavor.
Add enough water to fill the pitcher with about one gallon water.
Add the vanilla and mint leaves and let set for at least 15 minutes.
Mint leaves may be removed or kept in the pitcher. Serve over lots of ice.
BONUS TIP: Crush the mint leaves in your hands by twisting them gently to release more of the mint flavor.