The Homemade Homestead Apothecary~ Tea Love

by Wendy

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Making tea is a wonderful start on your path to herbal healing and wellness. Tea can be a wonderful soother for a busy, stressful days.  Making ‘tea time’ a family tradition is a wonderful way to include the kiddos, as is learning, gathering, growing, blending and preparing herbs and herb for tea.

The boys love to blend their favorites.  Their intuition often amazes me in their selection of herb.  It is always fun to see what they choose, and gives me a little insight into where they are emotionally, and physically.  A wise Mama knows she can use all the help she can get….especially when things get tough, boys often choose not to communicate, but their herbal language speaks volumes.

Often we have tea in the evening after supper, before bedtime.  It has become an accidental tradition, that my boys will ask for, especially after very hectic days.  It is a wonderful gift to connect as a family over steaming mugs of herbal tea prepared and brewed with love.

To continue with our Homemade Homestead Apothecary series I would like to list a few of our favorite homestead herbal tea blends.

Davey’s Bear Tea

This is my youngest son, David’s, absolute favorite tea.  It is based on the Celestial Seasonings blend, SleepyTime Tea, hence the name ‘Bear Tea.’  If you have ever seen the box for Sleepytime Tea you will know that it has a cute bear in a nightcap sleeping peacefully in his chair in front of the fireplace.  Sounds lovely to me.

This tea is wonderfully soothing to the nervous system, it is gentle and relaxing to body and spirit.  If I were going to name it, I would probably call it Peace Tea because of its peaceful and rejuvenating effect.  It soothes tension and anxiety, and is exceptional at repairing frazzled nerves after an overstimulating day.

It is simple to blend and prepare as it only has three herbs.

To make the tea you will need:

chamomile flowers

spearmint

lemongrass

Prepare tea with the steeping method, as described here.

  • You can blend a big batch ahead if you like, or you can custom blend your tea right into a reusable tea bag or ball for each pot or cup of tea.
  • Blend these three herbs in equal parts for the basic ‘Bear Tea’ blend.  For example if I am making just one cup of tea, I will use 1/3 t. of each herb in my tea bag.
  • Serve gently sweetened with raw honey, if desired.
  • To mix a pint, or quart, simply divide the jar into thirds, by pouring in one herb at a time, into 1/3 of the jar, trying to keep the amounts equal.  Pour the jar into a bowl to stir.  Once the herb is well blended in the bowl, simply scoop it back into the jar, place a lid on the jar to store in a cool, dark place.
  •  Makes wonderful gifts for friends and family.

Original Yogi Tea

This is the original tea blend as given by Yogi Bhajan.  It is a very healing and balancing blend of herbs and spices that is rejuvenating to the entire system.  It is my favorite tea.  It is a warming chai tea that is wonderful in the winter months, and around a campfire in the summer!  It makes a big batch, so is great for a family, or company.

Prepare tea with the simmer method as described here

In a large kettle with a lid, add 2 quarts of water.  Bring to a boil and add:

20 whole cloves

20 whole green cardamom pods

20 whole black peppercorns

5 sticks cinnamon, or about 1 heaping teaspoon of cinnamon bark chips

1 heaping teaspoon dried ginger, or one fresh root, sliced

  • Simmer for 20-30 minutes, then add:
  • Add 1 tablespoon of any black tea, or roobios tea, let steep for 10 minutes.
  • Remove from heat, strain, and  add 1 quart of milk, heat back up to the boiling point.
  • Enjoy with a little raw honey.
  • It is also exceptional with coconut milk, almond milk, or oat milk, if you do not use dairy.  You may also omit the milk and drink it plain.

I also found a recipe for a single serving if you are the only tea drinker in your home.  I usually make a big kettle to sip all day, but sometimes a smaller batch is nice.  Here it is.

3 whole cloves

4 green cardamom pods

1/2 stick cinnamon

1 ginger root sliced, or 1/2 t. dried ginger

1/4 t. ground black pepper

10 oz. water

1/4 t. black tea, or 1 t. roobios tea

1/2 c. milk

raw honey to taste

  • Use the simmer method to prepare this tea.
  • Simmer spices in water for 10-15 min.
  • Add tea and steep for 2 min.
  • Add milk and heat back up to the boiling point, do not boil.
  • Remove from heat, strain, and add honey to taste.

 

Mama’s Bedtime Tea Blend

I have recently started using valerian in my bedtime cup of chamomile tea.  To help make it more palatable, I have also added some spearmint echoing the recipe for Davey’s Bear Tea.   Though I am finding I like the taste of valerian just fine, which tells me that the herb resonates with my body.  I feel this tea is appropriate for adults and teens who need help relaxing for sleep, and also battle with insomnia, but not necessary for younger children.  It would be an extreme case that chamomile would not be strong enough for a child’s restlessness.
Valerian is a very strong sedative so please take care when using it.  This herbal blend is extremely  relaxing.  I would not drink it any other time except when I am ready for sleep.  I have been known to fall asleep in my large cup of tea before it is gone!  It is also good for those nights when sleep just won’t come, or is fitful.
Valerian is has the ability to soothe nerves, and release anxiety.  It is very calming especially when paired with chamomile.  Spearmint is just plain ol’ yummy, and good for digestion.  It helps to tie the others together and makes a very smooth cup of tea.

To Make the Tea you will need:

chamomile flowers

spearmint

valerian root, cut

Prepare this tea using the steeping method.

  • I usually just make it cup by cup.
  • Using the rule of thirds again, I make it the same as Davey’s Bear Tea above.
  •  Use equal parts of all three herbs.
  •  1 teaspoon of herb to 1 cup, or 8 ounces of water.

 

Afternoon Aaahhh…Tea

This is a perfectly blended tea best enjoyed with friendly conversation.  It is relaxing and soothing, calms anxiety, and releases stress, tension, and nervous energy, restoring balance to mind, body, and soul.  Kind of like a good friend.  So call a girlfriend, brew up a cup and chat away.

To make the tea you will need:

jasmine green tea

lavender Flowers, whole

Prepare this tea using the steeping method.

  • To 1 c. of water add 1 teaspoon of Jasmine Green Tea, 1/2 teaspoon lavender flowers.
  • Gently sweeten with raw honey if desired.

 

Mama’s Healing Tea

This herbal blend is our homesteads go-to for colds, and flus.  It is has antiviral and antibiotic properties, it is calming and soothing, and high in vitamin C.

To make the tea you will need: 

1 t. comfrey root, cut and dried

1 t. ginger root, fresh or dried

1/4 t. whole cloves

1/4-1/2 cinnamon stick, or 1/4-1/2 t. cinnamon bark

1 t. rose hips

1-2 T. lemon or orange juice, freshly squeezed

raw honey, to taste

Prepare this tea using the simmer method.

  • To 2 cups of water add herbs and bring to a simmer.
  • Simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Strain and add freshly squeezed lemon or orange juice.
  • Sweeten with raw honey.
  • Sip all day, for ease of cold and flu symptoms and enhance general well-being.
  • You may replace the comfrey with echinecea if desired.

Enjoy blending your own homemade homestead teas with your family, and who knows, maybe you will start an accidental tradition of your own on the path to wellness!