I like to make my own herbal homemade tea- infusions. Mainly because I can have whatever flavour I want and one tablespoon of my blend can last a whole day in a thermos flask and all I do is top it up. They are better for the environment than the packaged tea and much stronger.
My first class I set up when I arrived in the UK in 2007 was my morning Holyport class and we always started with some herbal tea. Now keeping a class supplied with copious amount of tea requires some potent mixes so that is where I decided to make my own and they love it. It is the only class I supply tea for as we have a kettle and mugs and it is a big part of the yoga pausing for sips of tea. They are never the same as it depends on what comes out on that first scoop.
My homemade tea is tailored to my own personal taste, and I can play about with the ingredients. If I fancy something spicy then I can put a bit of chilli in. For a fresher taste I add zesty lemon and orange. It depends on my mood or the time of day.
I like to buy mason jars and add all my dry ingredients. That way they can be stored in the cupboard and used just like regular tea or coffee. But you can use any air tight tub or clean jam jar.
I don’t drink any caffeinated drinks, I hardly drink alcohol and I don’t liked chilled or carbonated ones so I am quite fussy. But I have always enjoyed hot drinks no matter that weather. I even take some with me on the river when Stand Up Paddleboarding and to my yoga classes. It’s warm and comforting, especially with the sweet and spicy mulled flavours. If I need a bit of spark then ginger, chilli or pepper is added.
My spiced homemade tea is just great for making up at the start of the day. Then I take it wherever I go in a thermos flask. The tea can keep brewing then as I drink it, I can top it up with more hot water.
What is in the Tea-Licious Tea?
Whatever you want! I have more than one jar made up in my kitchen. The base is Rooibos (or ‘Redbush’) tea. This is a naturally caffeine free tea from South Africa. It has a mild flavour and can be purchased in teabags from most supermarkets. However I buy organic loose Rooibos (pronounced ‘roy-boss’) tea online. Amazon or Woodlands Herbs is a great place for getting herbs and spices.
Once you have your base, you can add whatever you want. This is an example of one of my recipes!
For one jar of tea
- 1 cup of loose rooibos tea
- 1 cup liquorice root cut
- 1 cup of fennel
- 1 cup green cardamon pods
- 1/2 cup dried lemon peel or
- 1/2 cup dried orange peel
- 2 or 3 broken up cinnamon sticks
- a few star of anise
- a pinch of pepper corns
- a pinch of chilli flakes
This is easy. Simply put all the dry ingredients in your jar or container and mix it all up. Ensure you container is air tight.
Boil some fresh water and add a teaspoon of your tea-licious tea to a thermos flask and fill with your boiled water. If you want a stronger flavour then add more tea to the flask.
You’ll need to allow it to brew for half an hour or so before drinking, but keep it with you when you are out and about or at work.
Use a tea strainer to avoid getting the ‘bits’ in your mug although finding a piece of fennel between your teeth I quite like.
Do I have to add all those ingredients?
The beauty of this tea is you really can adapt it to suit your own taste. If you don’t like chilli or don’t fancy having peppercorns, then don’t add them. There are many people who do not like the aniseed, fennel and liquorice family so just omit them and perhaps focus on the lemon and orange peel or you could use fresh mint or dry mint instead.
Or you can leave out the lemon and orange and keep it spicy.
Other flavours you could have are ginger – perfect with lemon. Or vanilla or fennel. If you have a favourite flavour of herbal or fruit tea that you buy from the shops, then use those ingredients. Just mix up several jars and label each one with what is in it.
If a mason jar is too big then use smaller containers and half the recipe.
The choice is endless!