Whether you’re at the cottage or doing some camping, knowing how to concoct a comforting drink from ingredients that surround you is an essential know-how. Yes, you could bring your own tea pouches, filled with your favourite flavours and herbs, but there’s no better feeling than creating a tasty drink, all from scratch.
You don’t have to be a natural-born survivalist to gather leaves, but you should be aware of which plants are edible and which are not.
Take cedar leaves for example. Cedar is a medicinal plant and has been used to treat fevers, chest colds, and flu-like symptoms. It also contains a large amount of vitamin C. But like everything, consuming too much of one thing is never good for your body. And in this case, it is recommended that you drink no more than 3 cups of cedar tea per week.
Making cedar tea from scratch requires only 3 simple ingredients. Here’s how you can make tea from the cedar leaves in your backyard.
Collect cedar leaves
You want to harvest fresh cedar leaves from your tree, making sure to only gather as much as you need. You can do this by directly taking the leaves off the branches, or by cutting off the smaller branches. Make sure that you are, in fact, collecting cedar leaves and not similar-looking leaves, such as junipers.
In a pot, place the fresh cedar leaves into the boiling water, and let them soak until the water becomes golden brown. You may decide to dump the first batch of boiled water and make a second one, since the first batch sometimes collects the dirt particles from the leaves.
The cedar leaf tends to be on the more bitter side, so, for many people, adding a natural sweetener like honey or maple syrup makes the drink more enjoyable. But if you’re someone who likes drinking their coffee black, then you might enjoy the tea as is.
So, the next time you’re at the cottage, or even at home, and are feeling up for a new drink, go outside, harvest some cedar leaves, and let your body enjoy some soothing cedar tea.