One of our favorite drinks in the summertime is sun tea. It is the perfect addition to a hot sunny afternoon. We like to experiment with different flavors, and we have yet to find one that we didn't like.
Making sun tea is simple. First we stroll through the herb garden and pick some fresh herbs, usually lemon balm, peppermint, and spearmint. You can add most any herb, chamomile is good, or add other herbs like nettle (known as sting weed), which is high in iron. Then we tear up the leaves in order to release as much of the flavor as possible, put them in the jar, fill it with water, cover it, and leave it in the sun for the day. At the end of the day we strain out the herbs (squeezing them to get all we can out of them) and put the tea in the refrigerator to cool.
To sweeten our tea, we put equal amounts of water and cane juice crystals into a pot and heat them until the sugar is dissolved. We store the syrup in the refrigerator and add it to our tea. Only a small amount of sweetener is needed.
This Friday we will be giving out samples of lemon balm sun tea. We will also be having a special on our organic lemon balm plants - a dollar each!
Last year we had five lemon balm plants in our herb garden and that was not nearly enough for this family of sun tea lovers, so this year I added more plants to finish out the row. Lemon balm is a perennial and will come back every year, but it is a good idea to cover the plant for the winter; it is somewhat tender.
Join us this Friday on the Farm and pick up some lemon balm for your summertime treat - sun tea!