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Thaiced Tea Cha Yen

Cha dam yen cha dam yen is known as dark thai iced tea in english. It is a strongly brewed tea sweetened with sugar and served over ice. Unlike many other versions of iced tea in thailand, it doesn’t contain any milk.

The secret to great Thai iced tea at home is: DON'T FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS ON THE BOX. I've tried it before a couple times and it's just…wrong. After some experimenting, I've discovered how to make restaurant-style Thai iced tea at home:

Recipe makes 6-8 glasses
Cooking Time: 12 hours (*I always make a batch the day ahead.)

Equipment and ingredients:
1 large pot with a lid
1 slotted spoon
1 big spoon
Stove
1 large jug (fits 10 cups liquid)
1 box Thai iced teabags
White sugar
Half and half (or a mix of milk and cream or any non-dairy milks you like. It's great with coconut milk and coconut cream, btw.)
Glasses
ice

Fill a large pot with:
10 cups water
20-24 thai iced tea bags (*some brands come with 23 bags per box. Basically, just use a whole box.)

Light your stove to medium heat and bring to a simmer. Once it simmers, add:
1 1/2 cups white sugar (*you may find you like yours sweeter or less sweet than what you'll get at a restaurant. I think 1 1/2 cups is about the same as restaurant levels of sweetness.)

Lower the heat to low, stir gently until the sugar dissolves, put a lid on your pot, and let the teabags simmer gently for 10 minutes.

Keep the lid on the pot and turn the heat off. Let the tea sit on the stovetop in the pot, lid on, until it cools to room temperature. (This should take several hours.)

Remove the teabags, squeezing all the tea out as you go. Be careful not to break the teabags. If you accidentally break a bag, you'll need to use a strainer later.

Pour the tea into a large jug and chill in the fridge until very cold (I usually do this overnight.)

To serve:
Fill a glass with a few ice cubes, then fill the glass 1/2-2/3 of the way with tea.
Add "half and half" until it's the color/taste you like. I find that usually 3-4 parts lowfat milk and 1 part heavy cream is best; about 1/3 cup milk and 2 TBS heavy cream. For a dairy-free option, I find a mixture of coconut milk and coconut cream (similar proportions) is the best.

My favorite brand is Wangderm Authentic Thai Iced Tea. You can usually find it at Cost Plus World Market in person or online: bit.ly/33N6MR3

Do a basic search to find it at other online sources if you want.

*I am not Thai. I just love restaurant Thai food.

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