Watermelon Iced Tea / by Chelsea Zwieg

Saturday is vacation day! Doing that whole midwestern going-up-north-thing that involves lots of lakes, boating, skiing and pine trees. Oh, and ice cream, s'mores, campfires, bike rides, games, sleeping in (what??) and laying in the sun and reading all day long. Basically, my ideal summer vacation in every possible way. 

I am so so excited. But first, a summery vacation calls for a summery drink. And there is nothing more summery than watermelon iced tea! 

I am all about the watermelon this time of year. Usually I just eat it plain, and then eat some more and then a little while later, eat some more. I like to repeat this process until my watermelon belly is so big I can't see my toes. Always a good sign of successful watermelon eating. But I've been trying to experiment a little more with different ways to use it. Watermelon salads are an A+ always. But since it's like 90% water (92 to be exact) it just seems so fit for mixing into a drink. 

This tea is made with a combination of black iced tea, watermelon juice and bit of lime juice. To make the watermelon juice, all you do is puree some melon in the blender and pour it through a fine mesh sieve. Bam, watermelon juice. It could not be more simple and yet it is so delicious adn way less fake tasting than any flavored iced tea you could buy. And super bonus, it does not use close to a full watermelon (unless you are preparing iced tea for an army) which leaves plenty of leftovers for eating. No complaints here. 

Watermelon Iced Tea 

Serves 6

| Ingredients

  • 2 large black iced tea bags (I used Lipton Iced Tea) 
  • 4 cups water
  • 6 cups diced watermelon
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Sugar, to taste

| Instructions

  • Place the two tea bags in a large pitcher. Bring the 4 cups of water to a boil and pour over the tea bags. Let steep according to the package directions. Once stepped, remove the bags and chill the tea. 
  • In a blender, puree the watermelon. Drain through a fine mesh sieve, pressing gently on the watermelon to get as much juice out as possible. Discard the solids. 
  • Once the tea is chilled, stir in the watermelon juice and the lime juice. Add sugar, to taste. The watermelon provides a lot of sweetness and I did not think it needed any extra sweetener. But I also like my iced tea unsweetened, so I might not be very trustworthy there. Just do you. 
  • Serve over ice with lime wedges and extra watermelon cubes.