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3 Ways to Prepare Herbal Infusions
By Angela Willard, Cl.H
Angela Willard is a Clinical Herbalist and Co-Founder at Harmonic Arts. She’s passionate about growing herbs, herbal consulting, and sharing her love and knowledge of plants. Angela finds balance between nurturing Harmonic Arts' vision and raising a young family.
The ritual of teatime goes far beyond the act of sipping a tasty drink- the simplicity of letting go and indulging in a warm cup creates a much deeper experience. Tea preparation is an important practice in this grounding ritual. The boiling of water and the steeping of herbs signals a retreat from the busyness of the day.
Passed on through ancient tradition as a key to good health, herbal infusions are an excellent way to reap the benefits of medicinal herbs. Infusions can be prepared in a variety of ways, depending on your mood and choice of herbs.
Not sure where to begin?
When preparing a herbal infusion, consider your needs at the moment. Are you looking for something with deeper nutritional value, or something warm and inviting to ring in a mindful moment? This can help to determine which infusion method is best.
There are three basic preparation methods I recommend to make herbal infusions: Simple, Medicinal and Solar.
Simple Infusion: For lighter, more delicate herbs such as leaves and flowers. Less steep time yields milder flavour, and steeping beyond 5 minutes will strengthen the taste.
How to Make A Simple Infusion:
- Scoop 1-2 tablespoons of your tea blend, dried leaves or flowers of choice into a tea strainer, and place into a teapot or mug.
- Heat water and bring to a boil.
- Once boiled, pour water over the herbs and cover to contain any volatile oils. Steep for 3-10 minutes, depending on preference.
- Strain and pour into your favourite tea cup!
Medicinal Infusion: Some of the more robust parts of a plant such as berries, barks, and roots
require cooking down, or a decoction, to free up both flavour and therapeutic compounds. This method of preparation softens the plant parts enough so that the plant's beneficial properties can saturate the water.
How to Make A Medicinal Infusion:
- Place 3 tablespoons of dried tea or herbs in a small saucepan.
- Cover the herbs with one litre of cold water, and bring to a gentle simmer.
- Once simmering, cover your pot with a lid and let simmer for 15-20 minutes.
- Allow to cool while covered for 10 minutes.
- To sip right away, strain into a teacup and enjoy!
- To save for sipping over the next few days, strain into a large mason jar and seal tightly. Keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Solar Infusion: This process is a slow infusion that subtly imprints both the chemistry and energetic properties of herbs into your tea.Steeped in the sun’s gentle warmth, the herbs open and release their medicinal compounds, making a cup of liquid sunshine! Solar infusions are one of the most delicious and seasonal ways to enjoy a herbal brew in summertime.
How to Create A Solar Infusion:
- Place 2-3 tablespoons of tea or dried herbs in a litre mason jar.
- Using filtered water, fill your mason jar to the brim to submerge herbs.
- Seal tightly, and place your jar on its side in a sunny spot.
- Allow the herbs to infuse for 3-5 hours, or all day.
- Once your herbal tea is rich in colour, strain over ice, sip and enjoy!
All of these methods can be done mindfully, with the intention of cultivating the feeling you need most in the moment. Using tea as medicine for the body, heart, and mind is a rewarding way to support overall health.
Our thoughtfully crafted Artisan Teas are delicious, formulated by herbalists, and versatile for a variety of infusion methods. From forest and field all the way to your teacup, our top-quality herbs infuse your day with ritual.