I fill a 2-quart pot about two-thirds of the way up. Just a tad bit more. I turn the burner on high, and set the pot of water on it.
I make a sugar slurry in the bottom of a half-gallon pitcher that I have in the sink. Maybe just a pint or so. A bit more. This is so the hot tea doesn’t scald or candy any of the sugar, were I not to make a slurry.
When the pot has come to a rolling boil, I turn the burner off. I dunk two combined family-size tea bags (Lipton, of course — no other brand will do… except for Great Value, which is what we use because it is cheaper, and it tastes good) several times in the boiling water, and then just leave them to rest in the now covered pot, their tags barely hanging out and over the handle.
After about twelve-and-a half minutes (I can do anywhere from 10 to 15), I bring the pot to the pitcher. I pull out the tea bags and dangle them inside the pitcher, while I pour in my hot tea. I do pour over the bags, but when the pot is empty, I do not squeeze the bags. (It makes the tea too bitter, until it has set overnight.)
I set the tea bags aside, usually in the left-side sink corner. (They’re too hot and too wet to toss in the can just now.) I use a long wooden spoon to stir the tea-and-slurry mixture, until the sugar is well dissolved. Then I pour in water, at a moderately slow rate, stirring all the while.
When it reaches the knotch on the pitcher, I stop the water, stop stirring, and put on the lid just to check that the level is right. (This is for consistency)
Those tea bags? By now, they’ve cooled considerably. At least enough that I can squeeze them nearly dry — taking care that the liquid deep inside the bags can still be pretty hot. I toss them in the can, and then just set my tea in the fridge.
Unlike most Southern “just made tea”, this method produces a ready-to-drink (with plenty of ice, of course) glass of tea.
And please. Do not pull out the lemon on me. I will take your lemon and fling it out the bay window — thirty feet off the ground — long before your knife of doom touches it.