Delicate Balmy Summer Tea
The fate of this early summer hot afternoon could be read in the tea leaves. Lemon balm leaves added to a delightful iced pomegranate white tea created a delicate pick-me-up for my overheated body steeped in sweat after a long bike ride home. Lemon balm, also known as sweet balm or (less accurately) bee’s balm, is a very hardy herb with a heady scent that’s perfect for adding a citrus kick to any tea or dish you might typically flavor with lemon zest. Just resting your eyes on the green sprigs standing at the ready among ice cubes is enough to refresh. I chose to make this tea with Pomegranate White Tea, but you can make it with any white or green tea or just brew a whole cup of lemon balm leaves alone for a truly lemony lift.
What other teas would this be good for? I’m guessing there are a lot that could be upgraded with fresh lemon balm. Let me know what you think would work.
Iced Lemon Balm & Pomegranate White Tea
1 c. boiling water
4 tea bags (Pomegranate White Tea or other)
½ c. packed fresh lemon balm leaves, washed
2 or 3 sprigs of fresh lemon balm
Honey or other sweetener to taste
Place tea bags in a medium size bowl. Crush lemon balm leaves lightly with your hands to bring out the oils (and give your hands a lovely smell) and place in bowl with tea bags. Pour boiling water over bags and leaves. Let steep for several minutes. Depending on the variety of tea you are using, I would recommend leaving it steep for up to 15 minutes to really pull out all of the flavor. Remove leaves and bags, squeezing to get out the concentrated tea. Stir in sweetener to taste. Fill pitcher with a tray of ice cubes and place lemon balm sprigs inside. Pour tea from bowl into pitcher. Fill remainder of pitcher with cold water.