Herbal Tea Recipe: PNW ‘Winter Day’ Blend
Western Red Cedar leaf blended with wild blackberry leaf, echinacea, rosemary, sage, and lemon balm. Good for colds, respiratory infection, concentration, stimulating the immune system, or just to brighten up these gloomy Pacific Northwest winter days.
I have been loving this tea!
This is the first time I’ve tried cedar leaf in an herbal tea blend, but it won’t be the last. It lends that distinctive cedar-woodsy, sharp note to the tea which compliments the rosemary and sage nicely. A touch of honey to sweeten my cup and I’m in tea heaven. Why did I not learn of cedar tea until now?
A note of caution, care must be taken with the internal use of western red cedar. It is not for extended use by those with kidney weakness, or for use during pregnancy. If in doubt, consult your health care professional before partaking. That being said,
Enjoying a small amount of cedar leaf in a cup of tea now and then is a pleasure that has long been enjoyed by the First Nations of this area, and I plan to join them. =)
Here is my recipe. If you try it… let me know how you like it!
Most of these ingredients probably grow in your garden or backyard already, but in case not, you can always buy the herbs bulk and make your own blend. That is what I do when my personal stock runs low on a particular herb and I need to replenish before my harvest time rolls around again. (I ran out of lemon balm this winter… can’t let that happen!)
For good quality dried herbs, I like to shop at one of two places. If I have to order online, it is Mountain Rose Herbs, but if I have a trip to Pike Place coming up I love to stop by Market Spice. Not sure if Market Spice carries cedar leaf, though. Cedar, however, is one medicinal plant that I will never be short of where I live.
PNW Winter Day Herbal Tea Blend
- .5 oz wild blackberry leaf
- .35 oz echinacea (leaf, flower, and/or root)
- .35 oz rosemary
- .35 oz sage (I used pineapple sage)
- .35 oz lemon balm
- .35 oz western red cedar tips (thuja plicata)
MEASURE dried herbs by weight into a mixing bowl and toss together to blend. I like to reduce the size of the herbs, without breaking them up more than necessary, to a size that allows them to blend nicely together for even distribution. I use clean fingers or sharp scissors to do this.
STORE in an airtight container until ready to use.
TO USE, pinch one generous teaspoon per 8 ounces of hot water and combine in your tea brewing device of choice. Allow to steep for 10-15 minutes. (I will sometimes brew a teapot and drink from it for several hours. But then, I don’t mind a strong tea.) Strain, add a touch of local raw honey if you prefer it sweet. Enjoy!
A note of caution: Care must be taken with the internal use of western red cedar. It is not for extended use by those with kidney weakness, or for use during pregnancy. If in doubt, consult your health care professional before partaking.
FOR MORE ABOUT WESTERN RED CEDAR IN TEA
The absolute best resource I have found so far for using wild medicinals is Michael Moore’s book Medicinal Plants of the Pacific West.
Here is an interesting post from a student of the Practical Herbal Pharmacy Class Project at Pacific Rim College on making a fresh conifer tea infusion using Western Red Cedar (including toxicity warnings).
This information is for research and educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Do your research!
You might also be interested in…
…this post I just published earlier this week, PNW Medicinal Tea Garden – 14 medicinal plants for herbal tea that you can grow! It talks about a few of the herbs included in this recipe and a little about why I like them.
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Disclaimer: This information is for research and educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Do your research.
Moore, Michael. “Red Cedar.” Medicinal Plants of the Pacific West. Santa Fe: Museum of New Mexico, 2011. 209-12. Print.
Riverdave. “Fresh Conifer Tea Infusion By Riverdave Practical Herbal Pharmacy Class Project Fall Term 2010 Pacific Rim College Victoria, British Columbia.” THE BORDER LIFE. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Feb. 2016. <http://theborderlife.com/Fresh-Conifer-Tea.php>.
“Mountain Rose Herbs: Cedar Leaf (Tips).” Cedar Leaf (Tips) – Mountain Rose Herbs. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Feb. 2016. <https://www.mountainroseherbs.com/products/cedar-leaf-tips/profile>.
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