Tea time means a pause - a chance to zone out for a while, to take a brief sojourn from your desk, to refresh the mind. Here are a few of my favourite herbals. They offer a remedy for some of life's big challenges, especially getting through the cold winter months.
Photo: EDDIE JIM
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- MINT TEA (pictured)
- 2 tsp Chinese green tea
- 1/2 bunch of mint
- 5 cups water
- 3 tsp honey or rice syrup (optional)
- LEMONGRASS AND GINGER TEA
- 1 stalk lemongrass, cut into 3cm pieces
- 3cm ginger, finely sliced
- 6 cups water
- 2 tbsp honey (optional)
- SAFFRON TEA
- 6 cups water
- 7 green cardamom pods, crushed
- 6 strands saffron
- 3 tsp honey
- 8 tsp English breakfast or Earl Grey tea
- 2 tbsp raw almonds, slivered
For mint tea, place the tea leaves in the teapot and pour some boiling water over the top.
Pour out the water (this removes some bitterness). Leave the green tea leaves in the pot and add the mint. Pour in 5 cups of boiling water, add the sweetener and replace the lid. Allow to steep for 3 minutes then serve piping hot. Slurp away!
For lemongrass tea, place the lemongrass and ginger in a pot with the water.
Bring to the boil and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Strain and serve with honey if too pungent. Next time you find yourself over-thinking to the point of paralysis, choose this tea to put fire in your belly.
Another option is to add a clove of garlic to the prepared tea, allow to steep for 5 minutes then strain. Gargle the brew to ward off colds and flu.
For saffron tea, bring the water to a boil and add the cardamom, saffron and honey. Simmer for 7 minutes. Turn off, add tea, cover and allow to steep to desired strength.
Strain and top with slivered almonds. Use to throw off a case of the winter blues. If you like, top up with warm milk.
All recipes make 5 cups