by Texas Homesteader ~
When it’s summertime in NE Texas, it’s hot, hot, HOT! RancherMan used to drink way too many colas as his beverage of choice. But it was so unhealthy. And expensive. And produced lots of trash.
But recently I was looking at my chocolate mint bed which is doing VERY well #thankyouverymuch. A little too well actually. It’s spreading in places I’d rather it not grow.
So I was thinning the runners and it smelled so dang good. I wondered if I can use it for a refreshingly-cold minty drink?
Everything I Need, Growing Right Here At Home!
So I brought in the chocolate mint trimmings and washed & stripped the leaves. I measured out a cup packed tightly with them.
Then I crushed the leaves between my hands to release even more minty flavor. I dropped those crushed leaves into my sun tea jar.
RancherMan’s Sweet Tooth
But RancherMan likes sweet drinks. I’ve got that gorgeous Stevia plant growing right outside for sugar-free sweetener whenever I want it. Why not put it to use here?
So I pulled about a 10-12″ stem of Stevia & washed and stripped those leaves as well, crushing them and adding them to the jar.
Brewing The Minty Beverage Using Only The Sun
I placed my fancy-schmancy Sun Tea jar (aka: repurposed picante sauce jar) into that hot Texas sun for about 6 hours. Your time may vary depending upon the intensity of the sun.
When the minty beverage was fully brewed it was about the same color as brewed green tea. So I brought it in, strained out the leaves and served a icy glass of this minty delight to RancherMan, asking him what he thought.
- “That’s pretty good. Sweet, very minty with a hint of chocolate.” he said.
- “Wow. That’s REALLY good!” he continued.
- “I’d absolutely drink that – brew more next time instead of the regular tea!” he exclaimed.
Well I’d say that was a raving endorsement!
So in essence… I’ve completed some ‘weeding’ chores in my landscape beds while also being able to provide RancherMan a refreshing, sugar-free sweet minty beverage for absolutely FREE?
Here’s the ‘recipe’ in case you want to try it yourself!
- 1 Cup Fresh Mint Leaves - washed, crushed & tightly packed (I use chocolate mint)
- 1 10" - 12" Stem Fresh Stevia, leaves washed, stripped & crushed
Rinse fresh mint stems & strip leaves. Pack 1 cup tightly with mint leaves to measure. Then crush leaves between your hands and drop the crushed mint leaves into your jar.
Repeat procedure with the stem of fresh Stevia.
When all is added to your sun tea jar, finish filling jar with approximately 4-5 cups filtered water. Set tea jar in the sun & allow sun to 'brew' mint for about 6-8 hours. (depending upon sun intensity) Brewed liquid will be the color of brewed green tea.
Strain out leaves and pour liquid into a glass filled with ice and enjoy!
Our Favorite Homemade Drinks
- Chai Tea Mix
- Healthy Rehydration: Haymaker’s Punch
- Homemade Velvety Chocolate Hot Cocoa
- Watermelon Daiquiri (or Smoothie)
- Sun Tea – Brewed With The Power Of The Sun
- Cool, Refreshing Sweet Mint Beverage
My Favorite Garden Hacks
- Easy Garden Planning Spreadsheet
- Getting A Jump: Planting An Indoor Greenhouse
- Repurposed Cardboard Seed-Starting Pots
- 3-Sister’s Garden – The Original Companion Planting
- Low-Cost Vegetable Gardening
- Planting A Large Galvanized Trough
- Using Cheap Biodegradable Weed Block
- Tricking Birds AWAY From Your Strawberry Plants
- Easy Compost For A Healthy Garden
- Propping Tender Seedlings
- Cheap (or FREE) Wood Mulch For The Garden
- Homestead Hack: Remember Where You Planted Seeds
- How Vegetable Gardening Can Change Your Life!
- Easy Deep-Soak Watering
- Planting Potatoes In Galvanized Trough
- Stevia – Growing Your Own Sweetener!
Cooking With The Sun
- Meatloaf In A Solar Oven
- Cheesy Chile-Chicken Casserole
- Boneless Breaded Pork Chops
- SW Chicken w/Seasoned Brown Rice
- BBQ Pork Sandwiches
- Homemade Marinara Sauce
- Pumpkin Bread
- Baking Bread In A Solar Oven
- Cooking Hard-Boiled Eggs In A Solar Oven
- Baking Potatoes In A Solar Oven
- Brewing Tea With The Sun
- Emergency Preparedness On The Homestead
You can see our other SOLAR oven articles here