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28 January 2016

Rosemary and Lemon Herbal Tea


Also known as tisane, herbal tea is a beverage made from the infusion of spices, herbs or non-toxic plants (leaves, rind, etc.) in hot water. Going back to the ancient times in Greece and China, it has a medicinal value but it is enjoyed nowadays for its flavors. It can be served hot or cold and it usually doesn't contain caffeine. Do not confuse it with tea because tea uses cured leaves of tea plant Camellia Sinensis. There is a wide variety of plants that can be used for herbal teas but one thing that we have to watch out for is that some can have different effects from one person to another. Pregnant women are not advised to drink any. Also, a relatively safe plant can give harmful effects if taken in large doses. So do check first before you start infusing anything. Wikipedia has valuable information about this topic.

I am tea drinker but I only discovered drinking tisane when I was visiting friends in France some years ago. After meals, we would usually have a cup of hot tisane, sort of like how we would do with espresso in Italy. It has a nice relaxing effect especially after (over)eating. Well in France, it's quite easy to eat more than you should anyway because you want to eat everything! During that time, I couldn't find any fruity tisanes in the Italian supermarkets so my friend from France would stock me up by sending boxes of my favorite flavors. It is a nice and healthy habit especially after dinner when you want to relax. 

With this Rosemary and Lemon Herbal Tea (or Tisane), I used only fresh rosemary needles and lemon rind to infuse in the hot water. The sweetener depends solely on you whether you want to put it or not. I like putting just a tiny bit to give it a light sweetness but not too much that it covers up the flavors of what I am drinking. 

Why rosemary? Once, I had a foraging course in the countryside outside Rome and I learned about the health benefits of the wild plants growing everywhere and one of them is rosemary. Apparently, rosemary has very good health benefits. Frequent drinking of rosemary tisane can actually help relieve stress, tiredness, improve the memory and help purify the liver. Imagine that. I have been looking for herbal remedies to help me with stress and tiredness when my answer is just resting outside my window. My potted rosemary is just there, waiting to be discovered. Adding lemon zest adds a wonderful citrus hint to the tisane plus it also has health benefits of its own. It is anti-inflammatory and it boosts immunity. Adding citrus zest is great for flavoring and for its vitamins and in another recipe with rosemary tisane, I mixed it with orange zest. One very important reminder is that the rosemary and the lemon should not be chemically treated (pesticides) at all so make sure you get them from sellers that you trust.

For the recipe of this Rosemary and Lemon Herbal Tea, you can get it at Skinny Ms. where I create recipes. It is a site that is focused on healthy life with tips on staying fit and a lot of healthy and simple recipes. For more of my healthy recipes there, please check out my Profile Page. Enjoy!

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