- Food and Cooking
Some Favorite Herbal Teas
My Favorite Herbal Teas
I am not much of a tea drinker. I am not much into drinking any caffeinated beverages for that matter (unless you count the tiny amounts in cocoa).
But I do like some herbal teas...which technically isn't really tea (since they are not made from tea leaves)...the correct term should be tisane, but few people nowadays have ever heard the word tisane. Just so you know tisane means, "an infusion (as of dried herbs) used as a beverage or for medicinal effects" (source).
I find herbal teas especially nice in fall and winter as they not only help warm me up, many kinds can also help soothe a sore throat and cough (especially with honey added). But I enjoy them almost any other time as well because they are often soothing and relaxing. For me they can be a special treat (that doesn't bother my health like sugary sweets do). They are a way of pampering and indulging myself now and then in a not so decadent way.
Like many people who have tried herbal teas I like the commonly found ones, like peppermint, chamomile, ginger, etc. But the ones I like the most are a little more exotic...or at least to me they are. So below is a (short) list of my favorite herbal teas that I have discovered so far. While these teas may have some health benefits to them, for me they are favorites based more on flavor and how calming and soothing they are to me.
Yogi Tahitian Vanilla Hazelnut Tea
I used to buy a similar tea to this from another brand, but they stopped making it and I was very, very sad, because I loved it so much. But then I found this version. It is somewhat spicier than the kind I used to buy (it actually has black pepper as well as ginger root that gives it a bit of kick...black pepper in a tea sounds strange to me, but it is good!). This tea is like a Dessert to me. It is sweet and almost candy like, but not too much so. And it goes nicely with shortbread cookies and such. On a cold winter's night I usually prefer it over hot cocoa.
The blend of herbs in this includes chicory root, carob pod, cinnamon bark, cardamom seed, ginger root, stevia leaf, clove bud, and black pepper. It also has the additional ingredients of "natural butterscotch flavor, natural vanilla flavor. natural hazelnut flavor, natural cinnamon bark oil."
Organic India Tulsi Cinnamon Rose Caffeine Free Tea
Tulsi is a popular and revered herb in India that is also known as "Holy Basil." It is thought to have many excellent properties.
The first tulsi tea I had actually was cold and came in a bottle. It was tulsi and lavender and it was divine. In the same shop that I bought it from they also had boxes of several tulsi tea varieties, alas none of which also had lavender in it. So I got this Cinnamon Rose Tulsi tea instead. And I love it so Very much! While I hope someday to get some lavender and tulsi tea to brew myself I am glad I also came across this one. The combination of rose with cinnamon and tulsi is very fragrant. Of course the scent of roses makes it "romantic" and really quite charming as well. For some reason it makes me think of a quaint, old fashioned cottage.
The packaging says that it is "stress relieving and healing." I can't vouch for the healing part, but I personally find that it is certainly soothing and stress relieving.
The tea is made from a blend of three kinds of tulsi leaves (Vana, Krishna, and Rama), as also cinnamon, cassia, rose petals, peppermint, stevia, cardamom, and chamomile. And it also has the additional ingredient of "natural Egyptian Rose flavor."
The product is also produced by Organic India which works with many small family farmers, So buying it helps to support these small organic family farms as well.
Yogi Honey Lavender Stress Relief Tea
This is probably the most relaxing tea I have ever had. Just inhaling its scent before I take a sip makes me begin to feel calm, but the calmness really starts with that first sip. The calmness fills me quickly, like the pouring of water into a cup, as I sip it. Lavender tea is unlike any other tea I have had before. I really get the floral taste as I drink it. It is quite lovely. It makes me feel like I am in a pretty flower garden when I drink it, although I am not.
The first I had of it I received as a sample, and I liked it so much I had to order a whole box so I could have more.
The packaging says that it helps to calm and ease tension. And I certainly think it is excellent for that.
The blend of herbs in it includes not only lavender, but also rooibos, chamomile, lemon balm, spearmint, lemongrass, peppermint, lemon myrtle, sage, and stevia. And it also has, "natural honey flavor, organic lavender flavor, natural vanilla flavor."
Herbal Tea Consumption Poll
How Often Do You Drink Herbal Tea?
Sweeteners, Milk, Lemon, Etc.
Some herbal teas include herbs that also act as natural sweeteners, such as licorice or stevia leaves. Because of that and because I have less of a sweet tooth than I used to I do not add much sweeteners to my tea. But when I do it is usually honey (preferably local). Honey has some nutrients in it, and while it has its own subtle flavor it doesn't change or effect the flavor of the herbal tea too much...enhancing it rather than imparting its own flavor on the drink.
For the Tahitian Vanilla Hazelnut Tea I like to use "raw sugar" (it's not really "raw" though) as it is less processed or refined than white sugar, so it has some small amounts of nutrients in it still, but I also like the more mellow "brown sugar" like flavor it imparts that I think compliments this particular tea.
With the Vanilla Tahitian Hazelnut Tea and the Tulsi Rose Cinnamon I will sometimes add milk if I am in the mood.
I haven't tried adding lemon juice to any of these herbal teas. It might be nice in the Honey Lavender? I'm not sure I would like it in any of these particular teas, but some might be adventurous and try it, as it is certainly nice in some herbal teas.
The spirit of the tea beverage is one of peace, comfort, and refinement.— Arthur Gray Content
Do you have a favorite herbal tea that you like to drink? Please share!