In my ideal world, I would prep for the week by making up batches of food to last several days: Cut fruits and raw veggies, make salads (cucumber, kale, chicken, etc.), bake bread, cook a pot of black beans, brew a gallon of tea, bake some granola or prep some muesli, stir up some muffin batter to have in the fridge, mix cookie dough, etc. Most weeks, however, I am not able to be that deliberate or organized, but I love when I can at least prep a couple of things to have set for the week. This is something we always try to do when we vacation at the beach- prep things on the front end- in order to have yummy foods on hand for the week.
One of the items we have been making this summer is Sun Tea. For some of you this is old news (it is after all an old fashioned trick), and for others of you this is a new fangled idea.
Sun Tea-the quintessential southern beverage- brewed by the warmth of a sunny day and poured over ice!
I love the magic and ease of Sun Tea. No kettles or boiling water are needed- just let the sun do the work.
Here’s how you do it:
Grab a plastic or glass container.
Put number of tea bags in container (according to size of the container- 2 quart or 1 gallon proportions as directed on package)
Fill container with water. Stir it up.
Cover with lid.
Find a sunny spot.
Let tea sit for a couple of hours, checking on it periodically.
When it is to the strength you want, take it inside, remove tea bags and sweeten to your liking (with sugar, honey, agave nectar or whatever sweetener you choose). Stir.
Pour over ice and garnish with mint and lime if you want.
(You can steep with mint leaves or other herbs- basil or rosemary- while it’s sitting in the sun.)
I also mentioned Muesli at the top of the post and I thought I would give a little shout out here about Muesli. I think Museli is to summer, what a bowl of warm oatmeal is to winter. If you like creamy, hearty, full of texture foods, like I do, you will love it. It is, of course, extremely versatile and can be tweaked and adapted a dozen ways to your liking.
Here is my current favorite recipe from Simple Bites:
1 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1 Tbsp. chia seed
2 tsp. ground flax
pinch of sea salt
3 Tbsp. currants (or raisins or dried cranberries)
1 1/4 cups almond milk
1 cup plain greek yogurt
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. pure maple syrup
1 large tart apple
Toppings: slivered almonds, fruits sliced/diced
In a medium bowl, stir together rolled oats, coconut, chia, flax, salt and currants
Pour the milk, yogurt, vanilla, and maple syrup over and stir to combine.
Grate apple- skin and all (or use a chopper like my handy Tupperware mini-chopper). Add apples and juice to the muesli.
Mix thoroughly, then transfer to a jar, close lid and refrigerated overnight. Lasts several days.
To serve- spoon about 1/3 of the container into a bowl, thin out with milk if desired (though I like it thick).
Sprinkle with toasted almonds, and fruit on top.
P.S. Kitchen tools I used in these recipes that you might want check out are:
- The glass gallon containers with lids- I bought these a while back when my son and I started learning to make Kombucha. They are so great- easy to use and clean. Here is a link to purchase them.
- The mini chopper- this is a magical chopper that my colleague, Patsy, introduced me to. It is super easy, speedy and it is great for finely chopping a cup full of something (nuts, fruit, vegetable, etc.) without much fun or mess. Click here for link.
I’d love to know ways you prep food and drinks for your week. Please share your ideas and inspiration with us!