Interested in making elderflower tea with fresh elderflowers? Then look no further as this guide will give you the easiest way to make this delicious tea. This elderflower tea is a delicious herbal tea that you can make from the elder bush or tree in your yard.
What Are Elderflowers?
Elderflowers are a type of flowers on a bush or tree that is known as Sambucus Nigra. These elderflowers are the same ones that eventually grow elderberries later in the summer. When spring starts, elderflowers generally start to bloom and you will find them to be large spawn of creamy white small flowers. When you put your nose close to it, you should be able to smell a strong floral scent.
Why You Should Try Elderflower Tea
It is a delicious herbal tea that actually offers a variety of health benefits. In fact, elderflowers are known to be used to help with the common cold, flu, sinuses and other conditions. In particular, it is known to help with supporting your respiratory systems. Some people who practice complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) suggests that elderflowers can also help reduce allergy symptoms.
Because elderflowers are known to help with the flu, the flowers are usually used in traditional tea to help with soothing and relieving a fever. In fact, some herbalists would use a collection of elderflower, mint and yarrow to help their patients fight their fever.
Elderflowers can also contain ingredients that might have a positive impact on those with type 2 diabetes. According to studies done, elderflowers can potentially prevent type 2 diabetes. The flower contain bioactive ingredients that might help increase the uptake of glucose in your muscles and stimulate the production of insulin.
How to Make Elderflower Tea From Fresh Flowers
First you need to forage the fresh elderflowers. Make sure you find the elderflowers that are completely open and in a nice shade of white. Avoid those flowers that have turned off white or brown. Ideally, it would be best to harvest them from around late spring to early summer.
Try to pick your elderflowers in areas that is away from traffic. This is to ensure that the flowers can remain as clean and safe as possible. Sometimes, car oil and smoke might leak onto plants and affect the quality of the flower. Once you pick the flowers, you should use it as soon as possible as they do go bad quickly after plucked and will lose their flavour.
The pollen in the flowers carries the scent and flavour of the flower. This is why a lot of people prefer to not wash the flowers. You can use your hands to remove the dirt and bugs from the flowers. Give it a good shake over your sink might help as well.
Make sure you remove all the leaves, stems and twigs as those are not safe for you to consume. This is because the leaves, stems and twigs contain minor amounts of cyanide and this can lead to a toxic buildup in your body. If you want to be particularly safe, you can pick off the petals from the elderflowers to make the tea.
Pour boiling water over your fresh elderflowers and let it steep for around 10 to 20 minutes. Use a fine mesh strainer to strain out the elderflowers from container and then pour it into a cup for you to enjoy. Some people might enjoy the elderflower tea with a splash of lemon juice or honey.
If making elderflower tea from fresh flowers seem a lot of work, you could always try elderflower syrup (these are super delicious) or boxed dried elderflower tea. These are both good alternatives to making it yourself.
Tried this tea and loved it? Try making dandelion tea next!
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