Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Spiced Orange Tea Mix

There are many versions of this drink mix. Sometimes it's called Friendship Tea or Russian Tea but I'm more to the point and prefer Spiced Orange Tea. I first saw a version of it on the back of a Tang canister but I've also seen it in cook books and online. Whatever you want to call it, it's wonderful! I was hooked the first time I made it a few years ago and I've made it every winter since because it's so good and always puts me in a good mood. Mostly it tastes citrusy but you can taste the spices and tea too. It's pretty unique and definitely worth trying if you've never had it before. If ya don't like it, you can always give it to a friend or bring it to work to share with your coworkers. And if you DO like it, you can make a double batch, package it in cute little canning jars, and give it away as little gifts at Christmas!

Usually I wait to mix it up until we have snow on the ground (which will probably be about 2 weeks from now!), but my husband has a bad sore throat today and this tea is soothing. And anyway, we've been having gorgeous fall weather here in Fairbanks the past few days. Brilliant blue skies, not too chilly, lovely turning leaves. Usually we seem to rush from summer to winter over the period of a couple days so I'm enjoying the beautiful autumn. Everyone seems to be enjoying the weather. We were at the very last day of the farmer's market this past Saturday and little kids were running around having a ton of fun playing in the leaves. We watched one little girl dumping leaves on her mom's head over and over. She was so cute and it was hilarious :D Then today a young boy in our neighborhood stopped me and asked if he wanted me to rake the leaves in our yard. He said he made $25 so far and was just so pleased with himself! Love it! And Spiced Orange Tea is perfect for this kind of weather :)

Okay, enough yammering. Here's the recipe:

Spiced Orange Tea Mix

1 1/2 C sugar
1 C Tang
1/2 C instant tea powder
1 .23 oz packet lemonade Kool-Aid mix
1 t cinnamon
1/4 t allspice
Place all ingredients into a jar, put on the lid, and shake to mix. To serve, mix desired amount (about .5-1 T) with hot water in a mug and stir to dissolve. Store in an airtight jar or else the mix will clump up and be sure to shake up the jar each time you want some tea because it tends to settle.

Yield: 3 cups, about 50-100 mugs depending on how strong you like it.

Here's a mug of the tea that I mixed up for my husband. The mug features a panel from an Alaskan comic strip called Tundra. The artist is named Chad Carpenter and he sells books, calendars, shirts, and obviously mugs. We see him at the Tanana Valley State Fair every year and usually buy a calendar or another book and my parents (who do not live in Alaska) have received Tundra gifts on more than one occasion. Here's the Tundra website if you would like to have a couple laughs.


  1. Oh this looks so good i have to try it. Except i don't know if we have powdered tea or tang in Australia. What other substitutes would you recommend? Could i use ordinary tea from loose leaf or tea bags or will that not work? And what is tang exactly?

  2. Tang is an orange flavored drink mix. Here's a bit more about it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tang_%28drink%29 Do they have sweetemed lemonade mix in Australia? If they have that or some other sweetened orange or lemon flavored drink mix, I'll bet you could use that instead of the Tang and Kool-Aid in the recipe. Then you could just brew yourself a weak cup of tea and stir in a bit of the tea mix :) No guarantees on how it would turn out but maybe worth a try!