That is a simple foraging recipe for the nourishing and vitamin C-packed pine needle tea.
I’ve been pining for pine.
Reading: How to make pine needle tea
Awhile again, I used to be studying a foraging cookbook (as one does), and noticed a recipe for pine needle easy syrup.
I apologize to the cookbook author- I can’t keep in mind which e-book it was in.
I instantly began attempting to find pine timber, however on the time, I lived in West Virginia. West Virginia is pine tree poor.
I couldn’t discover a single pine tree.
After which, we moved to Kentucky.
Kentucky has tons and tons of pine timber.
There are pine timber all over the place!
And so- my pine tree experiments started.
In search of extra foraging concepts? Strive making crabapple butter, honeysuckle easy syrup, and honeysuckle vodka.
Why Drink Pine Needle Tea?
As a substitute of pine needle syrup, I’ve been making pine needle tea. Largely as a result of I’ve had a chilly, and pine needle tea is a scrumptious option to get some vitamin C.
It additionally feels wonderful on a sore throat.
Be taught extra in regards to the dietary worth of pine needles right here.
Establish the Pine Tree Earlier than Harvesting
The primary rule of foraging is to positively establish the plant. Don’t skip this step- not all forms of pine are edible.
We’ll speak about one kind of pine that you would be able to undoubtedly forage for pine needle tea, and a few extra forms of pine (and pine look-a-likes that you must keep away from.
Use a subject information that can assist you positively establish the kind of tree you’re taking a look at. I like to recommend the Audubon Society Subject Information to North American Bushes.
Should you’re planning on utilizing a sort of pine tree for pine needle tea that we don’t talk about, be certain that to perform a little research in regards to the particular kind of pine that you just need to forage.
Edible Jap White Pine
For my pine needle tea, I used needles from the Jap White Pine tree.
The Jap White Pine has edible needles, and is straightforward to establish.
Take a look at how the needles are shaped on the tree- Jap White Pine timber develop needles in teams of 5.
Remember that needles additionally fall off the tree, so it’s a good suggestion to verify a number of needle clusters for the grouping sample.
Be taught extra in regards to the Jap White Pine, or watch this pine tree identification video.
Inedible Pine Bushes to Keep away from
Some forms of pine have toxic needles.
Keep away from harvesting from the Ponderosa Pine, particularly for those who’re pregnant or may be pregnant.
Be taught extra in regards to the Ponderosa Pine right here.
Keep away from harvesting from any kind of Yew tree. Yew timber will not be really pine, however they’re usually confused with pine.
Be taught extra in regards to the Yew Tree right here and right here.
How one can Forage Pine Needles
After you’ve positively recognized the kind of pine tree, and are positive it’s edible- it’s time to forage.
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You’ll be slicing off inexperienced pine needles, not the brown ones which have fallen to the bottom.
If among the needles are a lighter inexperienced than others- use these. They’re the freshest development.
Subsequent, take away the inexperienced needles from the woody department. Trim off any brown, dried off needles.
If you would like, minimize the needles into smaller items.
How one can Make Pine Needle Tea
Making pine needle tea is just like making different natural teas (like mint tea, ginger tea, or catnip tea).
Merely deliver water to a boil, after which let the water cool for one minute.
I wish to keep away from pouring boiling water immediately on the needles to protect all of the vitamins and nutritional vitamins.
Pour the water over the tea, after which steep lined for about quarter-hour.
You may steep the needles in a lined saucepan, teapot, or make a small batch in a teacup.
Subsequent, pressure out the needles. I do that by pouring the tea via a mesh sieve.
Tip: You can additionally use a tea ball or tea bag, however for the reason that needles generally is a little lengthy and unwieldy, I normally simply go away them unfastened.
Need extra tea concepts? Take a look at this information to natural teas.
What does Pine Needle Tea style like?
Pine needle tea is an gratifying if barely bitter tea.
It jogs my memory of holy basil tea or nettle tea.
It’s additionally a really delicate tea- so as to add extra taste, attempt including additional herbs (like mint or thyme).
For a stronger tea, you may add additionally extra pine needles than the recipe requires, and steep it longer.