Lemon verbena tea is a refreshing and soothing beverage that has gained popularity in recent years for its invigorating taste and many health benefits. While it can be purchased at specialty stores, learning how to make lemon verbena tea at home is easy and cost-effective. In this article, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to make lemon verbena tea using fresh or dried leaves.
To make lemon verbena tea, you will need the following ingredients:
- Fresh or dried lemon verbena leaves
- Sweetener (optional)
Fresh lemon verbena leaves can be found at local farmers’ markets or specialty food stores. If fresh leaves are not available, dried leaves can be purchased online or at health food stores.
Preparing the Lemon Verbena Leaves
If using fresh leaves, gently wash them under cool running water and pat them dry with a towel. To dry the leaves, place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and leave them in a warm, dry place until they are completely dry. This may take several days depending on humidity levels. Alternatively, you can dry the leaves in the oven at a low temperature (around 90°C/200°F) for 2-3 hours.
Boiling the Water
Fill a kettle or pot with the desired amount of water and bring it to a boil. Once the water has reached boiling point, remove it from the heat and let it cool for a minute or two until it reaches around 90°C (194°F). This is the optimal temperature for steeping lemon verbena leaves.
Making the Tea
Place 1-2 teaspoons of fresh or dried lemon verbena leaves in a teapot or infuser. Pour the hot water over the leaves and steep for 5-7 minutes, or until the desired strength is reached. If using fresh leaves, you may need to steep for a little longer. For a stronger brew, you can add more leaves or let it steep for a few extra minutes.
For those who prefer sweet tea, you can add a drizzle of honey or any sweetener of your choice. A slice of lemon can also be added for an extra zesty flavor.
Serving the Tea
Once the tea is ready, strain the leaves and pour the fragrant liquid into cups for serving. Lemon verbena tea can be enjoyed hot or cold, depending on personal preference. It pairs well with light snacks such as citrus-infused pastries, shortbread cookies, or fresh fruit. To enhance the presentation, you can garnish the tea with a sprig of fresh lemon verbena leaves.
Learning how to make lemon verbena tea at home is a simple and enjoyable process. By following these steps, you can enjoy a cup of refreshing and healthful tea anytime. Experiment with different variations by adding other herbs and spices to create your own unique blend. So, why not indulge in a cup of delicious lemon verbena tea today?