Summer has arrived in Halifax, and we’re making the most of it at Bloom Institute!
We iced several infusions of medicinal herbs and conducted a taste test at the office.
We tasted each individually throughout the day, and evaluated them for flavour, as opposed to medicinal value.
Here are the infusions we tried.
6. Raspberry leaves
Raspberry leaf tea is one of our most popular remedies, being great for female reproductive health, and reducing period cramps.
It turns out it’s also pleasant as an iced tea, although it didn’t top the charts. It has a slightly fruity smell, and mineral taste that Savayda says tastes like oysters.
5. Red clover blossoms
For this infusion, we used the blossoms, and only the top leaves that cup the blossom.
This is a nice iced tea that is subtly sweet, and not bitter at all. It doesn’t have a very distinctive flavour on its own, but it would be great to throw into a mixed infusion to add a bit of sweetness and because it looks great if using a clear glass vessel for steeping the infusion.
4. Ground ivy
Ground ivy, or Creeping Charlie makes a very fragrant, slightly peppery tea. This infusion tastes just like the plant smells – slightly minty, grassy, and a bit floral.
I tried a hot infusion and a cold infusion of fresh rose petals for this taste test. I didn’t find the cold infusion very flavourful, it could be steeped in hot water then iced. It adds beauty to any infusion.
2. Apple mint
Apple mint is not in the usual repertoire of medicinal herbs, but we tried it because it’s growing in my garden. It’s not as minty as peppermint or spearmint so it’s not as potent as a flavouring in cooking; it’s not as medicinal as other mints, and it’s not that great to eat raw because it’s so fuzzy, so it seems kind of lost in the world until you realize that iced tea is apple mint’s true calling.
It’s sweeter than peppermint, with a subtle fruit flavour. Definitely add this one to your list of iced teas to try.
Savayda said “Refreshing and uplifting”
Benna says “Mmmmmmm”
So which herbal iced tea was our favourite?
If you arrived here from our newsletter, you might have guessed it. Sweet Woodruff was the clear winner of the Bloom Herbal Iced Tea Showdown!
It has a vanilla flavour that is delicate and almost creamy, without a hint of bitterness. Benna thought it was a little reminiscent of cucumbers, which are known to be great for summer drinks. To me it smells refreshing like a forest, in a good way.
For an exotic treat, try making an infusion of rose and sweet woodruff together. This was a delicious vanilla-rose tasting delight. It’s floral, and creamy, and feels luxurious to sip. Rosewater is popular in Middle Eastern desserts, and I think this would pair well with baklava and a vacation to Istanbul.
One herbal tea that wasn’t worth it
Try at your own risk! We tried wormwood just because it’s abundant in my garden, but it is extremely bitter. I mean, I knew that…..but I thought maybe it would be different iced?
Nope. It’s still extremely bitter.
We wouldn’t drink it on its own as an iced tea, but the bitter flavour is cooling, so if you’re serious about beating the heat, you could add a tiny sprig to your iced tea blend, or something less powerful like mugwort.
Have you tried any of these? Let us know what you think in the comments.