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Half and Half (212.8) - Mark's Journal
Half and Half (212.8)
When seity1 and I exchanged some sample K-Cups a couple of weeks ago, one of the things she gave me but I hadn't gotten around to trying yet was a Celestial Seasonings Black Tea & Lemonade K-Cup. It uses the same hot-water process as any other K-Cup, since that's all the Keurig brewer knows how to do, but it's designed to be brewed over ice.

Iced TeaThe Keurig commercials that have landed heavily on TV lately warn you not to brew into glass, since there's a risk of the glass shattering, so I had to find a plastic cup to brew into, then see if there was ice in the office freezer. (My new refrigerator at home has an ice maker I didn't think I cared about, but I've really enjoyed having it. Of course, I don't have a Keurig at home.) It looked a little old, but there was.

The iced tea was pretty good. As far as I can tell, the pod is full of actual black tea leaves rather than instant powdered tea, mixed with what I guess is powdered sweetened lemonade. For the first time, I peeled away the foil top of the K-Cup after brewing, and I could see some un-dissolved sugar granules and a mound of soggy tea.

It took quite a while to find an ingredients list, and I admit I'm a bit miffed to discover that in addition to evaporated cane juice, which is absolutely fine by me (it's sugar, and is natural even if I don't want too much of it), this stuff is sweetened with a Stevia-derived sweetener, which is "natural," but the jury's still out on how safe it is.

I generally don't bother sweetening tea or iced tea anyway, so I might just start making iced tea in a pitcher to keep in the refrigerator for the hot, muggy afternoons ahead. Even if I decide Stevia doesn't bother me, making a glass of iced tea with a K-Cup is just a little too much more involved than brewing a cup of coffee to bother with it all that often.
4 comments or Leave a comment
stephthegeek From: stephthegeek Date: May 27th, 2011 05:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'd take unsweetened iced tea with a squeeze of lemon any day, but stevia's at least as close to natural as you can get if you've gotta go sweetened.

It sounds silly because it's not exactly hard, but buying a dedicated iced tea maker made it a lot easier.
retrev From: retrev Date: May 31st, 2011 08:37 am (UTC) (Link)
The problem is..natural doesn't always mean safe...and something that's eaten in small amounts direct from a plant (chewing stevia) doesn't mean it's safe to eat in the relatively large amounts which sweeteners are generally consumed.
kitchenqueen From: kitchenqueen Date: May 27th, 2011 11:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
Artificial sweeteners bother my stomach something fierce, so I'm glad to see that they're sweetening it with something somewhat natural. My friend Dawn and I love the black tea/lemonade pods. I'm down to 2 1/2 boxes, so it may be time to make another order.
logan607 From: logan607 Date: May 30th, 2011 11:30 am (UTC) (Link)
I like the whole concept of the K-Cup but it just seems so wasteful. Still, when I'm up at 5AM and dying for a cup of coffee, it'd be nice to just pop in a pod and pull out a nice cup.
4 comments or Leave a comment