Tropical Carambola Iced Tea Cooler is just the thing to sip on during the dog days of summer. This star fruit drink recipe is easy to make and is so refreshing on a hot day.
Pick up a few fresh carambola when your shopping. Or if you are lucky enough to live where this star shaped fruit grows you have plenty on hand.
You probably have a freezer full of frozen carambola juice and you are half way there to a tall frosty glass of a tropical drink like no other.
What is Carambola?
Carambola is a tropical fruit also known as star fruit. The tropical star fruit is originally from Asia but has been cultivated in Florida for over a hundred years.
Carambola has an almost indescribable flavor. A fully ripened star fruit has the sweetest flavor and the beautiful star-shaped tropical fruits have a flavor like no other fruit I have ever tasted.
If you were to ask two different people what the flavor of a star fruit is you will likely get two different answers.
To me, the carambola tastes like a combination of melon and pear.
For this Carambola Iced Tea Cooler recipe, I used these beautiful large fresh carambola that were picked from a local tree.
They were so sweet that you could leave out the sugar and still enjoy this tropical iced tea recipe without a sweetener.
If you only have access to the smaller tarter fresh carambola fruit variety you may need to adjust the amount of sugar used.
How To Make Carambola or Starfruit Juice
To make the Carambola Iced Tea Cooler you will need to make carambola juice.
Carambola juice is very easy to make.
Prepare the star fruit to make carambola juice by trimming off each end of the carambola fruit.
The ends of the fruit are usually browned and bruised by either falling to the ground or from being transported after picking.
Next, you will trim off the green unripened or browned ridges from along the points of the "star".
You will need to remove the seeds although the carambola seeds are edible. Slice each carambola fruit into star-shaped slices.
I have found that this is the easiest way to remove the seeds from a star fruit.
Place the trimmed, seeded and sliced carambola into a blender.
Pulse or run the blender on the whole juice setting until the carambola fruit is liquified.
Strain the juice through a fine-mesh strainer to separate the solids from the liquid. 3 cups of sliced carambola will yield 1 cup of fresh carambola juice.
How To Make Carambola Iced Tea Cooler
Step 1: Bring three cups of water to a boil and drop 3 black tea bags into the boiling water. Allow the tea bags to boil for 2 minutes and remove the pot from the heat.
Allow the black tea bags to steep for 5 minutes and remove the tea bags from the water. Stir the sugar into the hot tea until it has dissolved.
Allow the black tea to cool to room temperature. You can place the hot tea in the refrigerator to speed up the cooling process.
Step 2: Fill a pitcher with ice cubes and pour the carambola juice over the ice cubes. Add a few slices of carambola fruit if you desire.
Step 3: Pour the sweetened brewed black tea into the pitcher with the carambola juice. Mix to combine.
Serve with a garnish of star fruit slice and mint leaves.
One of my other favorite carambola recipes is my Carambola Strawberry Jam recipe which I also made with these beautiful fresh carambola fruit I was lucky to get a bag full of this summer.
Print the Carambola Iced Tea Cooler Recipe Below
Carambola Iced Tea Cooler Recipe
- 3 cups water
- 3 bags black tea bags
- ½ cup sugar
- 3 large fresh carambola fruits star fruit, trimmed and seeded (about 3 cups of sliced carambola)
- extra carambola slices and mint for garnish optional
- Bring the three cups of water to a boil in a medium pot. Drop the black tea bags into the boiling water and boil for 2 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the burner and steep for 5 minutes.
- Remove the tea bags from the pot after 5 minutes and stir the sugar (if using) into the hot tea until dissolved. Allow the tea to cool to room temperature. Refrigerate it to speed up the cooling process if needed.
- While the black tea is cooling trim the edged off the star fruit points if it is green or bruised.
- Slice each trimmed carambola into star shapes. Use the tip of your knife to pop the seeds out of each slice. Three large starfruit will give you about three cups of carambola slices.
- Place the sliced carambola into a blender or food processor. Process the carambola slices about one minute in the blender until the pulp is liquefied.
- Pour the thick carambola juice through a fine mesh strainer placed over a bowl.
- Strain all the juice from the pulp.
- Fill a large pitcher with ice. Pour the strained carambola juice into the pitcher. Fill the pitcher with the black tea. Stir and serve over ice.
- Serve over ice and garnish the glass with slices of star fruit.
Recipe Expert Tips
- Fresh or frozen carambola juice can be used.
- Teas: black or green tea can be used.
- How long to steep black tea bags: Black teas should only steep for 5 minutes or it will get bitter.
- How long to steep green tea bags: Green teas only need to steep for 3 minutes. Any longer and it will get bitter.
- When carambola is in season freeze the juice for another recipe. See how I process the fruit to make juice. How to freeze carambola juice.