Traditionally Thai tea is made from strongly brewed Ceylon tea. However, due to the high price of the Ceylon tea, a locally grown tea known as Bai Miang is commonly used along with added food coloring to make Thai Tea. It is flavored with either orange blossom water, star anise or crushed tamarind seed. This tea is sweetened with sugar and condensed milk and served chilled. Evaporated milk, coconut milk or whole milk are generally poured over the tea and ice before serving to add taste and creamy appearance.
I am not a big fan of tea (or coffee for that matter). But I enjoy an occasional cup of social tea (and coffee) once in a while when I have guests over or when I'm visiting someone. Also I like my tea (and coffee) with lots of milk and that is a little rare to find here in the states.
This version of Thai tea uses black tea bags that are steeped into a sugar syrup flavored with star anise and then sweetened even more with condensed milk and then served chilled. It is a nice refreshing drink for the summer.
This is totally not the time to post this Iced tea recipe because as I look out of the window, I see snow flurries and we have a snow blizzard with 1~2 feet of snow in the future for tomorrow. I made this tea couple of weeks ago when the temperatures where way below freezing (see the white sheet of snow in the background in the picture below?). I guess this is my way of saying 'Bring it on winter -- you don't scare me (?????)'. Anyway someone out there must have sunny weather and they'll probably appreciate my post ;-)
Recipe adapted from here.Ingredients: Serves 2
Black Tea bags - 4
Sugar - ¼cup
Whole Star Anise pods - 2
Water - 2½cups
Sweetened Condensed Milk - ⅓cup (or more to taste)
Ice & Mint leaves - to serve
- In a saucepan, over medium heat, bring water, sugar and star anise pods to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and add the tea bags.
- Allow the tea bags to steep and cool to room temperature, about 1 hour.
- Discard the star anise pods and the tea bags and whisk in the condensed milk.
- Pour into a large pitcher and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or until ready to serve.
- To serve: Pour the tea into 2 ice-filled glasses. Garnish with fresh mint leaves (if desired) and serve.