Tools for Tea Time
Depending on how you prefer to make your tea, you may need some or all of these tools of the trade:
- Mortar and Pestle
- Strainer or Tea Balls
- Tea Kettle
- Tea Cup
Dry ingredients have more flavor per equal serving. If you are trying out a recipe, make sure you know whether the measurements are for fresh ingredients or dry ingredients.
How do you know when the tea is ready to drink? You’re concerned about two things here. Is the tea the right temperature and the right flavor? The longer your fruit, herb, or flower is in the hot water, the more flavorful it will become. In most cases a few minutes will do, but sometimes it can take an hour or more. Some flavors are naturally stronger than others. Start with whatever is suggested and tinker from there.
We’ve just started compiling this list of teas. This edition includes a list of teas whose names start with the letters A – C. Come back soon to see additional tea flavors. If your favorite isn’t on the list, let us know so that we can add it!
Natural Tea Ingredients
You’re probably familiar with artichoke dip, but you may not have tried artichoke tea. The dip is made from the fruit portion of the plant. The tea is made from artichoke leaves. You can try the artichoke tea hot or iced.
The boldo is an evergreen tree that grows in the Andes region. It’s not the evergreen with needles that you are used to in the United States. If you would like to try this tea, you’ll have to order the leaves online.
You can learn more about chai and find chai recipes here.
There are different types of chamomile (camomile). Used as far back as the Ancient Egyptians, chamomile has many uses, including creating a delicious tea. You can find a recipe here.
Caraway is used to enhance flavor in a meal as a cooking spice but it also can be used to make tea. To make caraway tea, you’ll use ¾ T to 1 ¼ T of seeds, depending on your preference.
Catnip, like most members of the mint family, is relatively easy to grow. And yes, cats love the plant. Use fresh leaves or dried.
This plant is natural growing in the Southern United States. A handful of leaves from this plant can be used to make tea.
This beautiful flower comes in shades of red, yellow, orange, pink, and white. Snip the flower’s bud and let it dry. As you are steeping, keep in mind that the water will remain clear or only change slightly. Use one cup of dried chrysanthemum for every cup of tea. Steep for 4 – 6 minutes.
You can make cinnamon tea using the powder or the stick.
Don’t throw those peels away! Use orange or lemon peel, along with the juice. You can also add mint for additional flavoring. Use fresh peel for the best taste. Remove the peel from the fruit and slice into small pieces (less than half an inch). You’ll want 2 – 3 T of peel. Once you have the proper amount, add it to boiling water. Once you’ve added the peels to the water, turn off the stove and let steep for an hour.
Cloves, lemons, cinnamon, and oranges are some of the additional flavors you can add to cranberry tea. Most recipes ask for a significant amount of sugar. We found one with as little sugar as possible here.
This plant is found in the deserts of the Western United States (among other places). Mix the leaves and flowers into boiling water.