Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Fresh Chamomile Tea

Here's what Farmer John had for us at the Beachwood pick-up this week:

Fresh chamomile
Tat soi
Bok choy
Romaine mix
Mizuna
Red radish
Spinach
Chicoria
Turnip tops
Fresh garlic
Baby dill
Arugula

What a delight to have fresh chamomile for a steaming cup of tea on a windy afternoon! If you've never made tea from fresh herbs or flowers, here's your chance to check it out. Fresh chamomile has a naturally sweet flavor with a hint of apple and a beautiful yellow color.

For the most fragrant tea, use only the flowers. Pull off the flowers and compost the stems. Measure out a rounded 1/4 C of fresh flowers and place them in a teapot. Bring 4 C of cold water to a boil. Pour the hot water over the chamomile flowers in the teapot and steep for 5 minutes. Serve hot, or cool the tea, then refrigerate it and serve it cold.

Dried chamomile is perfectly fine, too. You can dry the flowers by hanging them upside down in a warm spot until dry; or you can pull off the flowers and dry them on a mesh screen set over a rimmed cookie sheet to facilitate air circulation. Once they're completely dry, store them in a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid or a metal cannister. To make tea with dried chamomile flowers: Use about 2 rounded tablespoons of dried flowers to 4 C boiling water. Steep for 5 minutes.

Enjoy!

Shelley

2 comments:

  1. Thanks for the suggestions on what to do with fresh chamomile. I recently scooped it up at my local farmers' market and am now in love.

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