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Old 03-24-2009, 04:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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How do you sweeten your tea?

OK, so I've started drinking iced tea to try and get off this love affair I've had with soda forever. So far so good, until I realized that my original recipe was using just as much sugar as soda! I then tried half the sugar, and while it was drinkable, it may take some time for me to get used to. I just picked up some Stevia, and will work with that and see how I like it, but I have no idea how much to use. (I don't think it's a same for same sugar replacement...) I'm also considering honey, but again, no idea how much to add. I'm making a gallon at a time, but may try a glass at a time until I can get some formula worked out. FWIW, this is plain old Lipton tea. I boil 12 cups water, add the sugar/sweetener, and dunk in 5 bags and let cool down for 20 minutes. I then fill up a gallon jug and add water to make a full gallon.

Anyone offer me some ideas on how to get a good sweet tea with less refined sugar?
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Old 03-24-2009, 05:13 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I've used brown sugar with lady and earl gray for years, but my favorite is to use fruit juice. Cranberry cocktail (100% juice) both sweetens and bitters up lighter teas like oolong or jasmine.
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Old 03-24-2009, 06:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
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2 teaspoons of white sugar preferably with a piece of cinnamon in it
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Old 03-24-2009, 06:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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simple syrup.
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Old 03-24-2009, 06:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Molasses
Honey
Maple syrup

Each has their own effect.
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Old 03-24-2009, 06:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm big on honey in green tea.
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Old 03-24-2009, 06:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I enjoy the flavors of tea when they are mellowed.
But I despise too much sweetness.
I don't sweeten it. Instead, I dilute it.
Adding twice as much water as a typical tea usually makes me smile.
A cool, light, refreshing drink. Perhaps with a hint of lemon.
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Old 03-24-2009, 06:53 PM   #8 (permalink)
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It depends on my mood.

Sometimes I like white sugar. A teaspoon will usually do--it's the best place to start, because you can always add more sweetener, but you can't take it away. I don't like my tea as sweet as I once did. Sometimes honey is good. Again, a teaspoon is typically enough, but sometimes I have a sweet tooth and add a little more. Another favorite sweetener (though I usually save it for my hot toddies) is demerara (turbinado) sugar:

I buy it in bulk from the local hippie food co-op.
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Old 03-24-2009, 06:56 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Try half sugar (processed, honey, maple, or whatever) and half artificial sweetener.

The other way is to stay away from the more bitter teas. Try plain white, or white with something fragrant (jasmine, or some other flower). To me white doesn't need any sweetening at all. Course I don't use much sweetener anyway.

Oh one more thing to try if you haven't, use cream or half-n-half. When I add cream to my iced teas I usually don't need as much sugar (plus it tastes even better!) Just don't mix cream with the flowery teas. Not as good. Go with black or white if you're using cream in iced tea.

I loooove tea in case you haven't noticed.
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Old 03-25-2009, 07:14 AM   #10 (permalink)
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5 tea bags for a gallon? what size bags are you using? I use 2 lipton bags for a gallon. I fill up my coffee maker with 12 cups of water, put the tea bags in the pot and let the coffee maker do its thing, then I let it steep for at least half an hour. In my pitcher I put a cup and a half of sugar and pour whats in the coffee pot over it and stir it really well, once the sugar is dissolved I fill the pitcher the rest of the way up with cold water.

I cant use artificial sweetner at all and trying to put sugar in tea thats already cold doesnt work correctly.

Because of my diabetes I limit myself to one glass a day (with dinner)

and to toot my own horn....everyone thats ever had it, loves my tea, they say its sweet but not toooo sweet
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Old 03-25-2009, 07:41 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I never sweeten green or white tea; it's too delicate in my view.

As far as cream/milk, etc., is concerned: If you haven't tried it yet, get yourself a proper Irish breakfast tea and steep it in your sweetness of choice along with your dairy/soy of choice for up to 5 minutes. It's a robust, earthy tea and stands up quite nicely to these additions. You can pretty much treat it like coffee.

Actually, it's been too long since I've had a decent Irish breakfast...I'll have to get some.
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Old 03-25-2009, 09:38 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baraka_Guru View Post
I never sweeten green or white tea; it's too delicate in my view.

As far as cream/milk, etc., is concerned: If you haven't tried it yet, get yourself a proper Irish breakfast tea and steep it in your sweetness of choice along with your dairy/soy of choice for up to 5 minutes. It's a robust, earthy tea and stands up quite nicely to these additions. You can pretty much treat it like coffee.

Actually, it's been too long since I've had a decent Irish breakfast...I'll have to get some.
Yum, Irish breakfast. And I also never sweeten green or white tea. My post above only applies to black teas.
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Old 03-25-2009, 05:07 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaniFaye View Post
5 tea bags for a gallon? what size bags are you using? I use 2 lipton bags for a gallon.

I cant use artificial sweetner at all and trying to put sugar in tea thats already cold doesnt work correctly.

Because of my diabetes I limit myself to one glass a day (with dinner)
Hmmm, I'll try 2 bags and see how it works. (I really do like my tea dark.)

Have you tried Stevia yet? It's not artificial in the sense that Splenda is, but rather it's herbal based.
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Old 03-26-2009, 02:23 AM   #14 (permalink)
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if you're using what I call the normal size the ones thats about 2 1/2 inches by 2, give or take then 5 is a lot and that maybe why you need so much sugar to make it to your liking.

No I havent tried Stevia....I like my sugar lol I've had to give up soo much being newly diabetic Im not giving up the few things I can still have in moderation
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Old 03-26-2009, 08:58 PM   #15 (permalink)
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1 teaspoon of sugar in black tea (hot). If I want something cold to drink, I usually drink water or beer
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Old 04-05-2009, 01:34 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Honey is all you need. If you can get locally made honey, it also helps fight allergies.
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Old 04-05-2009, 01:53 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I don't enjoy iced tea, so I never drink it. I like my tea hot and unsweetened.
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Old 04-05-2009, 02:02 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I use subtle amounts of Splenda.
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