Icy Tea Treats for Summer

Whip up sweet, refreshing tea popsicles for an easy hot-weather treat.

That’s right – tea on a stick! Making popsicles has to be one of the easiest, most fun cooking experiments out there – we certainly had a grand time coming up with these recipes in our test kitchen. Made with white tea or oolong, they’re the perfect refreshing treat to enjoy all summer long.

White Tea & Cucumber Popsicles
Above right; makes 8

1⅓ cups cold filtered water
1½ tablespoons white tea, Pu Er Bai Ya
½ cucumber
1 organic, unwaxed orange
3 tablespoons agave syrup
Cold brew the white tea by combining the water and tea in a large glass or pitcher and leaving it to infuse in the fridge for at least 4 hours or overnight. Strain and set aside the tea leaves to use for a later infusion.
Grate the cucumber using the coarse side of your grater, making sure not to lose any of the liquid. Gather the heap of grated cucumber and liquid and press it firmly into a fine-meshed strainer, holding it over a bowl to capture all the juice that drips out. Mix this cucumber juice – you should have about ¼ cup – with the white tea in a large bowl or pot. Zest the peel of the orange finely and then juice the fruit. Add zest, orange juice, and agave syrup to the tea mixture and mix well. Taste and adjust for sweetness, then divide the liquid into your popsicle mold, filling each one about three-quarters full. Freeze until solid. To unmold, run the outside of the mold briefly under hot water. Enjoy!

Oolong & Lemongrass Popsicles
Above left; makes 8

½ cup sugar
¾ cup filtered water
1½ tablespoons Four Seasons of Spring oolong
1 stalk of lemongrass
1 cup carbonated water
Handful of seedless green grapes, halved, or berries of your choosing
Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring often to dissolve the sugar. Cut the lemongrass into shorter segments and each a few times with the handle of your knife to bruise it and release its oils, then add to the saucepan. Once the sugar is fully dissolved into a syrup, remove the saucepan from the heat. Give the oolong tea a quick rinse in hot water to begin opening up the leaves, then stir them into the hot sugar syrup. Leave to cool to room temperature for about an hour and then strain, squeezing the tea leaves gently to extract all its flavor.
Stir in the carbonated water, then pour the liquid into your popsicle mold, filling each one about three-quarters full, and place in the freezer. When the popsicles are partially frozen and slushy, drop some fruit into each. (If you put them in right away, they’ll all float at the top.)