This lightly sweet Vietnamese Peach Tea is made with real peaches for a perfectly refreshing summer drink!
Peaches: An Ancient Fruit
In the States, when we think of peaches, we tend to think of Georgia, the southern state that is know for their sweet peaches.
What you may not know is that peaches actually have a long, global history, originating from Asia, where they are a major part of the culture and folklore. (And, China still produces roughly 50% of the world’s peach crop!)
We find the significance of peaches running deep in many ancient Asian cultures:
- Ancient Chinese writings, dating as far back as 1100 and 1000 BC, speak of peach tree branches and blossoms as protection from evil.
- A key Japanese semi-historical hero, Momotaro, was said to have been born from a giant peach. (Maybe he was the inspiration for James and his giant peach!) As in China, peaches in Japan are tied to the elimination of evil and misfortune.
- In Korea, peaches are considered the fruit of happiness and honor.
- In Vietnamese mythology, the peach branch was used to signal victory after a battle. In Vietnam, peach blossoms signal springtime, peace, and happiness.
Peaches Around the World
The Persians (modern day Iranians) brought the peach to Rome, where it was known as the “Persian apple,” malum persicum in Latin. Alexander the Great continued the spread of peaches into Europe, and it was in France that persicum became pêche, the word from which we get our term peach.
In the early 1600s, peaches were brought to Virginia from England. But, it wasn’t until the 1800s that peaches began to be grown more widely across the United States for general consumption.
So, really, here in the States, we’re super late to the peach lovin’ party.
Vietnamese Peach Tea
In Vietnam, peach tea is a common, refreshing, summer drink. Often you will see the drink made using a flavored syrup or flavored teas, but the best versions are those that use fresh, ripe peaches to infuse the tea with a subtle sweetness and the perfect peach flavor.
Making Fresh Peach Tea
Making this fresh peach tea could’t be easier. Frist, we make a peach syrup by simmering peeled and sliced peaches with a little sugar. The amount of sugar necessary may vary depending on how sweet your peaches are. But, if you use sweet, ripe peaches, most of the sweetener for this tea comes from the peaches themselves!
Once the syrup has steeped, it is combined with strong black tea and chilled. That’s it!
Why use flavored syrups or artificially flavored teas when making your own fresh Peach Tea is SO incredibly simple?
Trà Dào (Vietnamese Peach Tea)
Yield: 32 oz of tea
- 2 ripe peaches, pitted, peeled and sliced (plus more for serving, if desired)
- 2 Tb sugar (more to taste)
- 2 regular black tea bags*
- 2 c water, boiling
- 2 c cold water
- In a small saucepan, mix the peach slices with the sugar. Heat the mixture over medium heat until sugar begins to simmer, 5-7 min. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let stand for 10 min.
- While the peach syrup is steeping, steep the tea bags in the boiling water for 5 min. Remove the tea bags and discard after steeping.
- In a serving pitcher, mix your homemade peach syrup (with the peaches), steeped tea, and cold water.
- Chill 2-3 hours before serving.
- Serve over ice, garnished with fresh peach slices, if desired.