You can make herb tea without heating by soaking the herbs in water overnight or placing in a sunny spot outside all day in the summer. Not all herb teas extract well this way so try it and compare to see if the taste is as good or as strong as you would like. The reason we use this method is because more nutrients may be preserved without exposing the herbs to boiling water plus it is easier. In this recipe the oranges and lemons are raw too; the nutrient levels remain higher for many foods when not heated. This recipe features holy basil tea which supports the immune system and passion flower which is calming and anti-anxiety. It is not high in sugar since stevia is used to sweeten and the natural fruit sugar in the orange juice is diluted by the tea. This drink provides a refreshingly low-sugar way to enjoy the health benefits of these herbs. One other benefit—being a fluid it contributes to your 8 or so cups of recommended fluids a day so it helps with good hydration.
Holy Basil Tea
3 juicing oranges
1/2 cup dried holy basil (or 8 teabags of Tulsi tea from a health food store)
¼ cup dried passionflower leaf (available from herb supply stores or health food store that can special order—we get it from www.frontiercoop.com)
stevia extract to taste
3 qts. pure water
Place the herbs in a ½ gallon glass canning jar. Add the water and cap and leave overnight. An alternative is to place the jar in a sunny location outside in the summer for a full day. Next, strain the tea. Juice the oranges and lemon and add the juice to the tea. Add stevia to taste. Keep refrigerated.