December 2007 Issue
Winter Pine & Cranberry Tea - matsu to kuranbericha
Pine needle tea is high in vitamins A and C. In fact the fresh green needles have five times the amount of vitamin C found in one lemon! Dried Cranberries make for a nice marriage as the sweet and tartness from the cranberries help to offset the overpowering flavor of pine. All pines share basically the same medicinal qualities, however the main medicinal varieties are scotch and white pine. The parts of the tree that are highly medicinal are the needles, inner bark and sap. Throughout the centuries, people have literally survived on pine-needle tea as well as cured themselves of scurvy by drinking a tea of both the needles and inner bark of the pine tree.
Pine is also considered an excellent remedy for any ailment having to do with the throat, sinuses, and lungs. Pine Needle & Cranberry Tea makes for a delightful and soothing tea with a refreshing forest fragrance. When cooled down this tea can be used as an effective antiseptic gargle for sore throats. A heaping handful of needles can be placed into a large pan of boiling water, allowed to steep covered for 10 minutes, and then used as an effective steam inhalation for clogged sinuses. Not only does it work quickly to break up and expel trapped phlegm, it helps kill infection and reduces inflammation in the upper respiratory tract through its natural antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties.
Makes 1 Serving
- Chop 1 heaping Tablespoon of fresh Pine needles into small pieces
- Combine with 2 Tablespoons of Dried Cranberries and bring to a boil in 8 oz. of spring water
- Steep for 15-20 minutes, then strain and drink hot.