Tea cooler recipe, revised and improved

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

The last experimental batch of tea cooler was heavy on the lemon and weak on the tea for Paul's taste, so I dropped the sugar to 1-1/2 cups, the lemon juice to 3/4 cup and increased the tea bags to six for the gallon. It was an improvement, but still a bit heavy on the lemon. That was still a little too lemony. We decided to drop the lemon to only 1/4 cup for the next batch, expecting it to be too weak, in which case, I could add lemon juice a tablespoon at a time until I hit the proportion of lemon Paul likes. To my surprise, and delight, he really likes it with just 1/4 cup, which is the amount of juice in one fresh lemon. It's not Swiss Farms tea cooler, but it turns out that's a good thing. He likes this better.  (No surprise to me since I'm using freshly brewed tea and freshly squeezed lemon.)

Reducing the lemon did wonders for the cost. Produce Junction had lemons at $1.00 for six, the sugar works out to about $.45, and the tea cost is only a few cents, so the cost per gallon is about $.75, resulting in a $2.00 per gallon savings. Plus, no extra trips to Swiss Farms and no extra plastic jugs. Hurrah.

Final recipe: 1-1/2 cups sugar, juice of one lemon, 6 tea bags