Shall we start with a beverage?
How about one that is quintessentially Southern?
Of course sweet tea is not unique to the South. We drink it here in the frozen bits of the US. We even sweeten it. They serve it at McDonald’s for crying out loud — how much more ubiquitous could something be? And yet I still don’t think it means quite the same thing up here. For us, it’s kind of a drink option; for them, I sense, it’s as fundamental and necessary to their continued existence as Coke Zero is to mine. Oh well, as Tim Gun likes to say chacun à son goût. Y’all.
(But here’s something to ponder: if sweet tea is the “house wine of the South,” what is the house wine of the North? Maybe it’s wine.)
So if you’re going to make sweet tea you’d be wise to ask a Southerner. This recipe has you add 8 bags of tea (and Foster says this should be nothing fancy, just Lipton or Tetley) to water that has just been brought to the boil and removed from the heat. The tea is steeped with squeezed lemon halves, sugar and mint leaves. After that add water, the juice you squeezed from the lemons, and more sugar to taste.
It’s delicious. Just sweet enough for my taste and I love the mint and lemon. I will certainly make this again and again.
I wonder how it would taste with a shot of Coke Zero in it…