I’ve always loved gardening, and have been looking forward to the day I can grow a multitude of my own produce, including a broad range of plants not only for cooking, but for making my own teas and tisanes too.
I’m not 100% there yet… I won’t be until the day I have my own place and can transform the yard into an edible paradise. I’d do it now, save for the fact that I have to remove anything I plant when I leave my current abode, and I’m restricted to using the current garden beds, which don’t allow for a whole lot of space.
There are of course ways around that, and I have managed to grow pumpkins for the first time, much to the dismay of my boyfriend.Those dark green vines with pretty yellow flowers have managed to creep about 10 metres along the fence line over the lawn. In the other direction, they’ve crawled a further five metres or so up under the fence into the front yard. Thus he threatens to mow over them on an almost weekly basis.
What is a relationship however without compromise? Being the good boyfriend that he is, he has agreed not to mow the vines to shreds (though I can see from the glint in his eyes that he’d thoroughly enjoy doing so), if I keep the grass short.
How I hear you ask? With scissors of course, and yes, it is as painful as it sounds, though definitely worth it. Especially when I see my pumpkins getting bigger and bigger each day.
Ah but I digress. As I mentioned above, I have very little garden space available. I do however have room for rosemary, and what a wonderful herb it is.
One of my favourite ways to enjoy this fragrant perennial herb is as a tisane. Tisane because technically it’s not considered a tea… even though it looks like one, and tastes like one.
For starters, it’s not as hard as it sounds. A tisane is basically an infusion of herbs/flowers/roots and hot water. For this one, all you need is fresh rosemary, hot water and a lemon.
So, here’s how to make rosemary and lemon tisane…
Pick a smallish sprig of fresh rosemary off your plant, roughly the equivalent of about one tablespoon’s worth of leaves. You can rub the leaves a little if you so choose. Sometimes I do and sometimes I don’t. Doing so, will help release more of the oils, and therefore make the flavour a little stronger.
Place the sprig/leaves in your tea cup and add about 250 ml of hot water. Leave it to infuse for a while, then add a small squeeze of lemon juice. It’s as simple as that.
I don’t really measure the amount of infusion time, as normally I set it aside while I’m doing something else, then come back to it. In saying that, you should wait for at least five minutes or so as a minimum. The longer you leave it, the more it’ll infuse and the stronger it’ll taste.
One of the benefits of this infusion is the stimulating effect it has. Rosemary aids in concentration and keeping the mind clear due to the increased supply of blood to the brain. Plus it has some exceptional antiseptic and antibacterial properties. Combined with the lemon makes it a great way to start the morning, or as an aid for a sore throat.
Note: Tisanes or any infusions for that matter, should be consumed in moderation. As too many coffees can have negative effects, so can tisanes. Responsible drinking people. Even if it is just tea… ahem tisane.