Now that the weather has officially turned here in NYC and the heat is on, I’ve been craving iced non-alcholic drinks on the regular to cool me down. Specifically, I’ve been nursing an addiction to Arnold Palmers, that half iced tea, half lemonade concoction that’s also referred to as Half and Half. They are ridiculously thirst quenching and have just enough caffeine that I don’t miss my coffee.
In the summer, I love to make a different pitcher of something every few days and leave it in the fridge. That way, when friends stop by I have the perfect, impromptu, non-alcoholic drink to serve that also works as a base for a cocktail (splash of vodka, anyone?) if the mood permits…
Of course, such a basic drink deserves a little twist, and I dressed mine up with pomegranate (2 ways!) and a touch of mint. I added a bit of pomegranate juice, but I also used pomegranate molasses to sweeten the drink. I’ve mentioned pomegranate, and other fruit, molasses in the past, and though the term molasses may call to mind a super sweet sugar byproduct, fruit molasses are actually quite healthy. They are just the cooked down version of the fresh juice, and I prefer using this as a natural sweetener here than anything else. You may want it to be a bit sweeter, so feel free to toss in a bit of agave or simple syrup if you need and enjoy!
Yields 1 big pitcher
4 English Breakfast tea bags
½ cup lemon juice
1 cup pomegranate juice
7-8 tbsps pomegranate molasses
additional simple syrup or agave, to taste
mint, for garnish
Bring 8 cups of water up to a boil. Add tea bags and let steep 4 to 6 minutes. Remove tea bags and cool completely in the fridge.
Transfer cooled tea to a pitcher and add the lemon and pomegranate juices along with the pomegranate molasses. Taste and add simple syrup or agave to taste, if desired.
To serve, muddle a bit of mint in the glass before adding ice and pour the Arnold Palmer right over.