Making tea from freshly cut herbs from your own yard is an easy and rewarding task. Some of the most commonly used herbs are Peppermint and Spearmint. Both of these herbs are extremely easy to grow and usually provide more than enough leaves for making tea many times throughout the year. But just about any herb you grow can be brewed into a delicious tea.
Some of my favorites are Sage leaf, Chamomile flower, Rosemary leaf, Lemon Balm leaf, and of course Peppermint leaf. Also, starting with one herb as your primary flavor and throwing in a little bit of another herb can create an interesting tasting tea. For example start with mostly Peppermint leaves and add a bit of Sage leaves or try adding the petals from a rose.
Herb teas made from fresh herbs tend to be a bit weaker tasting than those made from dried herbs. So, I usually gather more herb than I think I’ll need and then actually use all of it that way my tea will have the stronger flavor that I prefer. I suggest gathering enough herb to make at least a pot of tea (about 4-6 cups). It helps if you can take the same pot you’re going to brew your tea in (or a bowl about the same size) out to the garden with you then cut enough herb to fill the pot about 3/4 full. If possible cut your herbs in the morning to ensure the best flavor.
Easy steps for making your own Peppermint or Spearmint leaf tea:
1.) Cut the stem off close to the ground leaving at least two sets of leaves on each stem so your plant will continue to grow or select only the tender new leaves at the top of the plant
2.) Avoid yellowish or spotted leaves
3.) Wash the herbs under cold water or dunk them into a sink of cold water and shake off excess water
4.) Remove the leaves from the stems for the best flavor and put them in a pot
5.) Pour boiling water over the herbs to just covering the herb
6.) Use a long spoon to carefully bruise the herb by pressing the spoon into the herb against the sides of the pot
7.) Place a lid on the pot and let steep for up to a half hour
8.) Strain the tea through a mesh strainer or colander
9.) Pour into a container of storage
10.) Chill and enjoy
A pot of tea can be refrigerated for about five days.
Maria Roderick is the Production Manager at Cheryl’s Herbs.
She makes or supervises the making of all the fine Cheryl’s Herbs products.