Ice Tea or Iced Tea? It depends on where you live. In the South, it’s called ice tea and everywhere else it’s called iced tea.
Iced tea did not take its current form until the popularity of black tea took off, thanks to the work of the Indian Tea Commission at the St. Louis World’s Fair in 1904. As the legend goes, Richard Blechynden, the head of the commission, watched the fairgoers pass by his elaborate teahouse as the sweltering temperatures made hot beverages unpalatable. Driven to increase the market for Indian black tea in the States, he hit upon the idea of not only serving it iced, but also perhaps more importantly, giving it away for free. His booth was soon the most popular at the fair as the patrons found his golden beverage to be the perfect refreshment.
Spurred on by his success in St. Louis, Blechynden toured the country, giving away more and more iced tea, quickly spreading its popularity nationwide. Brewing the perfect iced tea at home, complete with sweet and often fruity syrups, soon became the hallmark of a great hostess. Iced tea was mixed with all sorts of flavors in delicious punches; lemon, mint, strawberries, cherries, and oranges, whether fresh, preserved, or in syrup form or, for the more mature palette, brandy and bourbon to give it a little extra kick. And though few still have time for such an elaborate and time-consuming production (early recipes recommend beginning to brew tea at breakfast for service at dinner), iced tea remains an American favorite, available in bottles, cans, and even from a soda fountain.
To make iced tea use double the amount of tea or teabags that you would use for hot tea when you’re planning to chill the drink. And allow the tea to come to room temperature before you put it into the refrigerator. Fill an ice cube tray with tepid tea and freeze for ice that won’t dilute your drink. You could also float some minced mint or fruit in the cubes for a special treat.
“Work With What You Got!”
© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved
Chocolate milk goes upscale. Matcha, mint, hazelnut, lemon-basil, and coconut are some of the subtle flavors that Kee Ling Tong, who owns the Kee’s Chocolates stores in SoHo and in the garment district, has infused in her refreshing chocolate milks, both semisweet and white. Kee uses milk from Fair Oaks Farms in Fair Oaks, Indiana as a base and then infuses delicious subtle flavors.
Susu and Kee’s Chocolate Milk: $3.00 For 3 Ounces; $6.00 For 6 Ounces Including A 50 Cent Bottle Deposit.
Kee’s Chocolates: 315 West 39th Street, NYC (212) 967-8088 and 80 Thompson Street, NYC (212) 334-3284
“Work With What You Got!”
© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2015 All Rights Reserved
There are those foods that can be rather difficult to figure out how to eat without looking like you were born in a cave. Here are some useful tips for properly eating perplexing foodstuffs.
Pluck off artichoke leaves and scrape the tender part (not the prickly point) between your teeth (preferably after dipping in melted butter). Work your way to the delicate inner leaves, and then use a knife to cut off the remaining small leaves and feathery innards. Cut the artichoke “heart” into bite-sized pieces and eat with a fork.
Eat asparagus with your fingers if served raw as crudités. Eat with a fork and knife if served with dinner.
Break bread into bite-sized pieces, and butter it or dip it into olive oil just one piece at a time.
Eat entire crab, including shell, either in sandwich form or using a fork and knife. Remove inedible pieces from your mouth with a fork.
Place meats, vegetables, and other fillings on a flat tortilla. Roll up and use your fingers to eat fajitas from one end.
Spear bread, vegetables, or fruit with a fondue spear and dip into cheese or sauce. Remove food from spear using a dinner fork, and eat from a plate. DO NOT double dip. Spear uncooked meat cubes and place spear into fondue broth or sauce. When cooked, transfer meat to a plate using a dinner fork and cut into smaller pieces to eat.
Wear a lobster bib to avoid fishy splatters, Crack shells with shellfish crackers and extract meat with a small fork or pick. Cut larger pieces with a knife, and eat with a fork after dipping in melted butter. Clean your hands by dipping fingers into finger bowls, and use lemon (if provided) to cut extra grease. Dry your hands with your napkin.
Use a knife to push peas onto a fork. Do not mash peas before eating, or eat peas from a knife.
Use a small fork to extract mussels, clams, or oysters from the half-shell. Season with fresh lemon or cocktail sauce. In informal settings, you may quietly slurp shellfish from shells.
Using a soup spoon, spoon soup away from your body and then quietly sip from side of spoon. Tilt bowl away from you to spoon up remaining drops.
Twirl pasta with fork tines into bite-sized portions, and allow any dangling pieces to fall back onto your fork. You may also rest fork tines against the bowl of a spoon while you twirl pasta.
Extract clam from shell using a small fork, and use a fork and knife to remove inedible neck. In informal settings, it is permissible to use fingers.
“Work With What You Got!”
© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen
I love radishes and am always drawn to the pretty color of a pile of radishes. Most of us just slice them into a green salad and the left-over radishes die a fateful death in the fridge. Here are some non-salad ideas that will expand your radish repertoire.
Radish Sauté – It doesn’t really occur to many people that you can cook radishes (as with cucumbers). It’s so simple to sauté radishes in olive oil or butter. They are delicious and make you appreciate radishes in a while new way.
Kimchi – Sprinkle the radishes with a bit of kosher salt and a little chili paste. Toss together and then pack them into a glass jar. Place in the back of the fridge for two weeks. Excellent on top of a burger.
Butter & Sea Salt – A fine butter and a pinch of sea salt on top of a radish slice make the perfect summer bite.
Radish “Sauerkraut” – Slice 1 pound of radishes and toss with 1 tablespoon of kosher salt. Pack tightly into a glass jar. Weigh down with a wrapped can and place on a shelf for two weeks. Makes a great addition to a sandwich.
Shaved & Lightly Poached In A Tasty Liquid – Slivers of radish dropped in a simmering stock and/or wine for 10 seconds are a great compliment to fresh fish. They let go of their bite, but retain some of their unique crunch we all know and love.
Braised – Sauté a little onion and garlic. Add in some radish quarters and a healthy splash of red wine. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Finish with a squeeze of lemon or dash of vinegar. Excellent draped over a grilled steak or pork chop.
Pickled – Slice some 1/4 inch coins and throw them into a jar. Pour brine over them (1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon sugar, 1/2 cup water and 1 1/2 cups cider vinegar). You may want to throw in a few dried chilis if you want a bit of spice. Let sit in your fridge for a week.
Soup – Simmered for 30 minutes in a soup. The radishes will take on a sweet and velvety character.
Grated – Grate the radishes along with some freshly grated ginger and use as a condiment with any oily fish such as trout or mackerel.
Roasted – Quarter and toss with a little olive oil. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Roast in an oven at 425º F for 20 minutes. They should be a little brown and will become sweet. Toss them with some toasted nuts. They are a great side dish at any potluck picnic.