July Tea Blend - Reducing Heat
I won’t lie, the strong and clear sun of summer is not my favorite. Its rays just seem to burn me and make me feel ill if I’m out too long. You’ll mostly find me haunting the deep shade of the forest this time of year loving the way the light illuminates the layers of green leaves like stained glass.
I’ve taken to making a cold brew on the go and adding ice to it throughout the day to keep cool. This month my go to herbs have been Elderflower and Chrysanthemum.
Chrysanthemum is a traditional Chinese herb with a cool, sweet and slightly bitter flavor to it. It clears heat from the body. Tierra says in The Herbs of Life, “The Chinese drink it as a summer beverage for its cooling and refreshing taste and rejuvenative properties.” It happens to be one of my favorite herbs to drink singly, but I wanted to include Elderflower in this blend for its alterative qualities, or blood purifying action as well.
These tiny flowers have a very sweet flavor to them and, according to Wood in The Earthwise Herbal, “Have traditionally been used as a sedative diaphoretic i.e. reducing heat in the body by opening the pores and dispersing the blood.”
Chrysanthemum is an herb easily cultivated in the garden. Strictly Medicinal Seeds in Oregon carries two different species starter plants. I hope to plant some in my garden this year for a nice harvest next year!
For this blend I did a simple 2 to 1 ratio of 2 ounces of Chrysanthemum to 1 ounce of Elderflower because I wanted more Chrysanthemum but you could do a 1 to 1 ratio if desired.
The Elderflowers are so small that they do tend to sift to the bottom of the bag, so make sure you dig deep when making this tea. It’s good in the evening hot or during the day cold brewed.
See standard cold brewing instructions on my last tea blog post here.
You can also be lazy like me lately and fill a big tea ball in the morning and cover it with room temperature water and ice. As you drink throughout the day just keep adding ice when the water warms again.
At the end of the day thank the flowers for their cooling effect and toss them out! Repeat!