Homegrown Herbal Tea

Phaedra

Garden Addicted
Joined
Jun 26, 2021
Messages
2,593
Reaction score
12,330
Points
205
Location
Schleiden, Germany USDA 8a
It's snowing and raining, 0 degree C; however, those tea MUMs are blossoming.

Well, my reasonable guess - those are hardy MUMs in general, just people found their taste is good for brewing herbal tea.
14325.jpg
 

digitS'

Garden Master
Joined
Dec 13, 2007
Messages
25,625
Reaction score
28,291
Points
457
Location
border, ID/WA(!)
Does anyone know about Milk Thistle for tea?

It doesn't grow here but does over the Cascades within @Dahlia 's wild harvesting territory ;).

Milk Thistle is an ingredient in some commercial, herbal tea blends.

:hu Steve
 

Dahlia

Deeply Rooted
Joined
Nov 24, 2020
Messages
1,273
Reaction score
3,279
Points
195
Location
Pacific Northwest
Does anyone know about Milk Thistle for tea?

It doesn't grow here but does over the Cascades within @Dahlia 's wild harvesting territory ;).

Milk Thistle is an ingredient in some commercial, herbal tea blends.

:hu Steve
That's one I haven't tried! I haven't seen it in my favorite foraging books either...
 

Phaedra

Garden Addicted
Joined
Jun 26, 2021
Messages
2,593
Reaction score
12,330
Points
205
Location
Schleiden, Germany USDA 8a
I wonder if mum tea would be similar to dandelion flower tea?
Mum tea has a much stronger and more distinct fragrance, and dandelion flower tea is milder. My harvest this year isn't much, but different colors have slightly different scents.
14529.jpg

I just tried the one in the middle, pinkish purple ones and brewed them in 90C hot water for about 5 minutes. Wow, it smells so great, and I also like the tea!
14543.jpg


Next year, I will transplant some in the hoop tunnel to protect the flowers. When we were young, it's easy to find a shop selling chilled and sweetened mum tea and black tea in the local markets. I am very satisfied to grow my own collection.
 

digitS'

Garden Master
Joined
Dec 13, 2007
Messages
25,625
Reaction score
28,291
Points
457
Location
border, ID/WA(!)
DS sent me a box of stevia.

It is from an Asian market and in tea bags. Perhaps several of us have experienced stevia that has been processed and looks much like white sugar. This appears to be the whole herb. In fact, the only English words on the box are "Sweet Herb" and "stevia." It's different.

There is flavor beyond sweetness but, yes, it is very sweet. I have left out the customary dried cranberries in my herbal tea, which provides sweetness but little if any flavor to the tea. These tea bags of stevia provide flavor even when used in 3 cups of hot water. Missing any cranberry flavor in the other mix, this adds a certain pleasant complexity.

I see that @Alasgun uses stevia regularly and Phaedra grew it this year. I had a few plants several years ago and honestly didn't know what to do with them. Only as a child did i put sugar or honey in my tea (Camellia sinensis). The cranberry use was with the hope of having that fruit flavor but it doesn't seem to happen. The sweetness has some value but the over-sweetness of stevia had not been appreciated until now.

Stevie, who failed to resist opening DS's gift package that arrived a couple of weeks early but did the stevia "analysis" thru those weeks before submitting to peer-review :D
 

Phaedra

Garden Addicted
Joined
Jun 26, 2021
Messages
2,593
Reaction score
12,330
Points
205
Location
Schleiden, Germany USDA 8a
DS sent me a box of stevia.

It is from an Asian market and in tea bags. Perhaps several of us have experienced stevia that has been processed and looks much like white sugar. This appears to be the whole herb. In fact, the only English words on the box are "Sweet Herb" and "stevia." It's different.

There is flavor beyond sweetness but, yes, it is very sweet. I have left out the customary dried cranberries in my herbal tea, which provides sweetness but little if any flavor to the tea. These tea bags of stevia provide flavor even when used in 3 cups of hot water. Missing any cranberry flavor in the other mix, this adds a certain pleasant complexity.

I see that @Alasgun uses stevia regularly and Phaedra grew it this year. I had a few plants several years ago and honestly didn't know what to do with them. Only as a child did i put sugar or honey in my tea (Camellia sinensis). The cranberry use was with the hope of having that fruit flavor but it doesn't seem to happen. The sweetness has some value but the over-sweetness of stevia had not been appreciated until now.

Stevie, who failed to resist opening DS's gift package that arrived a couple of weeks early but did the stevia "analysis" thru those weeks before submitting to peer-review :D
Yes, I am also pretty surprised about Stevia is sooooo sweet! I still keep two daughter plants propagated from cuttings in the greenhouse. So far, they are doing pretty well.

The fresh one is much milder, and I usually pick one or two leaves for one pot of tea (about 600ml).
 

digitS'

Garden Master
Joined
Dec 13, 2007
Messages
25,625
Reaction score
28,291
Points
457
Location
border, ID/WA(!)
monk fruit sweetener. For me, that is the only no/low cal sugar alternative I've tried that doesn't taste "off"...
I should gain more familiarity, having only had munk fruit in the processed and premeasured packets. It was sweet and that's all I know. Being able to grow it is, of course, out of possibilities. Proved that I could grow it, at least ;).

It would have been helpful if I had tried the stevia that I grew in a cup of tea. I honestly don't remember what was done with it (about 2-3 plants) just that the sweetness was overwhelming.

The purchased dried leaf stevia is supposed to arrive today. I'm very anxious to learn if it contributes the pleasant flavor once it is steeped in hot water. Could drying make it flavorful? Do i know that the bagged herb sent to me by DS was not adulterated with something else? No, I don't know.

Anyway, I will come right back here and report on my experience with the dried product. :)

Steve
 

digitS'

Garden Master
Joined
Dec 13, 2007
Messages
25,625
Reaction score
28,291
Points
457
Location
border, ID/WA(!)
The stevia was delivered Saturday afternoon and I immediately made some tea along with a little stevia, the dried orange peel, licorice root, and dried mint. Too little difference was noted.

Yesterday and this morning, I tried again. I think that I now have a good idea of the amount require – about a level tablespoon per 3, 10 ounce cups. Sweet, of course, and that in itself may enhance other flavors. I don't really know anything about how we taste flavors. And, of course, I enjoy the sweetness.

My impression of the flavor may sound like a strange one: the scent of a pile of maple leaves in the Autumn. There is more than the sweetness. Having only just tried the processed stevia, my idea was that it was only sweet with essentially no flavor. What I did with the little stevia I once grew, I don't know but I didn't dry it. I'm not sure if the fragrance of dried tree leaves would have made me think that it would be good with licorice, citrus and mint flavor in a tea but I have learned, I LIKE IT :).

Steve
 
Top