February...the shortest yet seemingly longest month of the year So cold. So dark. So sleepy. February is like the month of the home stretch, when the last bitter cold days of winter finally end, and spring is oh, so close. In my February Steep, I crave lightness, and flavor and bright cups of color. I fight off stagnation (both mentally and physically) and need an extra burst of motivation almost every day to get me one day closer to spring. I want to sip the flavors of spring and smell the earthy sweetness of things just about to sprout. I want quiet tea moments with simple, cheerful herbs. Dandelion root, rose petals, peppermint & orange peel every day, from now until the month when we herald in the first days of spring...


This month is simple for tea, and I'm doing a little something I often like to do with herbal preparation: Decoctions + Infusions. It may seem like just one more step, but once you've done it once or twice it's cake. Hardier parts of herbs (like roots, rhizomes, barks or stems) require a little more than just a simple little steep to get all the good medicinals out of them. They need a decoction preparation, which means you simmer those hardier parts in water for about 10-15 minutes. On the other hand, more delicate parts of herbs, such as flowers, petals, seeds or leaves do just fine with a gentle, normal steep. When I blend the two methods together it's not only usually delicious, but extra medicinal because taking the time to make tea this way is totally worth it






February Steep

1.5 cups filtered water
1 tsp dried or fresh orange peel
1 tsp dandelion root
1/2 tsp dried rose petals
1/2 tsp peppermint leaves

Combine water, orange peel and dandelion root in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cover, and let simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat, and add the rose petals and peppermint leaves. Give it a stir and let sit, covered, for 7 minutes. Remove lid and strain into your favorite mug and sip consciously. 

 

Where to find it: I often purchase dried herbs (when not locally available) from Mountain Rose Herbs, Avena Botanicals, Zack Woods Herb Farm or Starwest Botanicals