Hey everyone. Now that we’re beginning to enter the luxurious and windy season of fall, I decided that it was a good time to do a post that will let you warm yourself to the core in these upcoming cold months. In today’s issue of Track Much?, I will show you how to perform the surprisingly simple process of making pine needle tea!
No joke, a 8 year old could probably make it, given proper instructions. This is one of my favorite teas I’ve ever tried, and it is simple to make. If you’re wondering about the taste, I would say just make the tea and try it! But I’ll tell you anyways 😉 . It actually smells like a Christmas tree and I don’t really know how to describe the taste. It tastes like Christmas or pine is really the best I can explain. Towards the bottom of the cup it will taste a little resiny, but if I am correct, that’s where a lot of the vitamins are. This tea is rich in vitamins A and C. If you are bent on it tasting like pine sap and being disgusting, you won’t like it. But if you are willing to be open to a (very) new taste, are willing to not set high expectations, and just accept it for what God made it to be, then you will probably enjoy it 🙂 .
Here’s everything that you will need:
- A handful of pine needles
- Cutting knife
- Cutting board
- 1-1/2 cups of water
- Small pot
- Cup, glass, or mug
- Something to stir with
First, find a small pine tree that is about head hight, preferably young, and has plenty of pine needles. Find some of the younger (light green) pine needles and gather about a handful or so, being careful not to gather too many from one branch. Older ones (Darker green) work as well, but I personally like younger ones better. You can even gather from many different pine trees if you want, but it may taste slightly different than needles gathered from one tree. Please do not gather pine needles from the Yew and the Ponderosa Pine. These are poisonous pines.
Remember, it’s not a chemical equation. Also, do you want to fully know the taste of pine needle tea? Experiment with different amounts of needles, colors of needles, sweeteners, and the amounts of water.
After you’ve gathered the needles, you need to remove the little, brown, papery thing attaching the needle to the branch. Rather than ripping it off, try sliding it off so as to not waste the needle you just spent time to gather. After you’ve removed these, you will want to cut the long needles into anywhere between half an inch to an inch in length pieces. Remember, it’s not a science!! But know that the smaller you cut the needles, the more taste you will get. I like to cut mine into about 3/4 of an inch pieces.
After that, go ahead and put about 1 and a half cups of water on the stove and once it’s boiling, you can take it off. That’s the temperature I like, but if you like yours less hot, then take it off before it boils. Again, experiment with the hotness of the water to suite your tastes 🙂
After the water is taken off the stove or fire and no longer boiling, pour it into a glass or mug. Then, gather all the pine needles you just cut into tiny pieces, and put them into the water. Allow them to steep/rest there (undisturbed) for about 4 minutes or so, and then stir it for another 2. When you’re done, most of the pine needles should have sunk to the bottom of the cup.
It should look something like this when finished steeping and stirring. Ignore the tiny glass elephant in the middle of the mug 😀
After that, if you want to experiment with different sweeteners, feel free to! I don’t sweeten it because I like the regular taste and I don’t want to negate the healing properties of it, but if you just want a good tea, then go right ahead! I don’t know quite how good these would taste, but maybe consider trying stevia, sugar, or honey.
After that last step, there is one more step that remains….
I hope you guys liked this post and I DO HOPE that you try it out. If you don’t have pines near you, then that’s ok, but most people have some nearby if they don’t live in the arctic or desert. If you would like to see more posts like this with flour, tea, fritter, and all sorts of other wild recipes, please drop a comment below or send me an email letting me know. I do not believe I am in any shortage of running out of recipes to try, so if you want to see more, then please let me know via email or comment.
Keep calm and track on!