Cooking, eating, and entertaining... it's why I collect recipes and share them. Plus I'm half Hungarian, which explains a lot.
Mint Leaves for Refreshing Flavor
Mint Tea Medicinal Effects
Even when it is served piping hot, there is something refreshing about the flavor of mint. Mint leaves have an antioxidant known as rosmarinic acid, which is anti-inflammatory and considered for relieving allergies.
It was an important plant in medicinal herb gardens of yore, as well as a delicious flavoring for food dishes. But the tea brewed from the leaves has been the simplest way to enjoy it, and the cooling effect of the compounds found in the essential oils create the refreshing feel on a hot summer's day.
It also has analgesic and anti-spasmodic effects, relieving pain and calming. (1)
In some cultures, it has become a requisite drink that every home serves throughout the day. Moroccan Mint Tea is renowned.
Some like it spiked, and a Mint Julep crossed with sweet tea render a summertime cocktail drink.
Me? My favorite will always be the simplest hot Apple Mint tea brewed fresh from my garden plants.
Health Benefits of Mentha Leaves
Peppermint tea is used for aiding the digestive track. Helps ease heartburn, indigestion, and nausea; although not recommended for pregnancy.
Mints of all types are widely used as breath fresheners.
Vitamins? Yes, Please
Mints contain many B-complex vitamins, besides being a good source of vitamin K. Vitamin A and beta carotene, vitamin C and vitamin E are also found in the leaves..
Nothing is easier to brew than pure herbal mint tea:
Simply pluck a handful of fresh mint leaves, crush them, add about four cups of boiling water, and infuse for about 5 to 10 minutes. Sweeten or not.
If you would like something more complex, try the recipe below.
It combines the antioxidant properties of green tea, with healthful herbs.
Nutritional Data for Spearmint
- Nutrition Facts and Analysis for Spearmint, fresh [mint]
It is a good source of Protein, Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Phosphorus and Zinc, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Riboflavin, Folate, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Potassium, Copper and Manganese.
The Best Way To Brew Mint Tea
Are you making an herbal drink?
If you have dried mint leaves, put them into a tea strainer and place within a teapot full of boiling water. Steep for minutes.
For fresh mint, take 4 or 5 five inch stalks of mint, lightly crush them and add 4 cups of boiling hot water, and brew in your teapot. Allow a full five minutes to brew.
Or Is A Mint Infused Green Or Black Your Preference?
Making a summer iced tea drink is as easy as brewing "double strength" tea of either green or black tea bags. Adding one tablespoon of coarsely chopped fresh mint leaves to the hot tea, and strain after five minutes.
Cool the tea and serve over ice.
For an excellent batch of tea that yields perfect results every time, use the following recipe.
Tips on Growing Mint And Brewing An Herbal Cup
|Prep time||Cook time||Ready in||Yields|
- 1 to 2 teaspoons Matcha Tea, powder
- sprig Thyme
- sprig Basil
- several sprigs Apple mint, crushed
- 2 cups Water
- Crush the sprigs of mint and herbs together.
- Pour hot water over the crushed herbs, brew for 10 minutes.
- Stir in Matcha powder
- Add sweetener if desired.
- Serve either hot or iced.
Types Of Mentha For Teas
Mentha × piperita
Better known as peppermint, is long known as a digestive aid. Its flavor either as an herbal tisane or as an additive to China tea is one of the most popular flavors of mint.
The plant is a cross between watermint and spearmint, it is very easy to grow in the garden or in a pot on the windowsill.
Spearmint is the flavor of choice for many, because of its milder, more mellow flavor. There are many varieties of this popular culinary herb.
Apple Mint is my own personal favorite for enjoying as a tea. It has a rich flavor that is mellow, the plant is super easy to grow, and it has other uses (jelly, eaten fresh, a pretty garnish), too.
"Pineapple Mint" is a variegated variant, but I don't find its flavor is anything near what the wooly, soft green leaves of apple mint produce.
Discover Many Varieties
- Mint 17 Varieties of Mints Organic Mint Plants Choosing, Using and Growing Mint
Don't miss the highly informative videos on this excellent page by Mountain Valley growers. Guides you to all the many mints worth growing, with a discussion of their qualities,etc..
In The Garden
Every garden writer worth their salt will warn you of the thuggery of mint plants. I grow a stand quite well against an out building with strong growing grass edging the perimeter of the planting. The regular mowing keeps the mints in check. But if you have a cultivated flower or herb bed, you might think twice about letting the roots of a Mentha plant have a free run. Better to contain the plant in a pot, buried in the garden.
Grow apple mint as a companion plant near peas, tomatoes, broccoli and cabbage, in the vegetable patch. This is my favorite mint tea flavor!
- My Ten Favorite Herbs In The Herb Garden
My private list of ten favorite herbs; the ones I can't live without. Of course I grow much more than these ten... but this is where I'd begin.
Ilona E (author) from Ohio on January 07, 2015:
Thank you Vellur, glad you liked it. It is one of the most refreshing flavors in the world :)
Nithya Venkat from Dubai on January 05, 2015:
I love mint tea and anything to do with mint. Great hub and information on mint.
Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on November 26, 2014:
Ilona, thank you for the facts on this valuable herb. I was not aware of the Vitamin Be properties. That's really good to know. Thanks.
Yvette Munro on October 21, 2014:
I'm growing chocolate mint at the moment. Trying something a bit different.
Ilona E (author) from Ohio on October 17, 2014:
It is milder than peppermint. I think you would like it.
anglnwu on October 17, 2014:
Yum, mint tea! I've yet to try apple mint but from what you describe, sounds like a good mint to plant. Thanks for sharing.
Ilona E (author) from Ohio on October 16, 2014:
Thanks! I agree that the difference having fresh mint leaves make any method used to grow it worthwhile.
Fay Favored from USA on October 16, 2014:
My mint plants are potted so they don't take over the yard. I like being able to have fresh mint in my iced tea or recipes. It also helps calm my stomach. Pinned this to my tea board.