Insufions, or “teas”, can be invigorating or relaxing, and can be made of tea, spices, dried fruits, herbs, dried peels, or some combination. In India I discovered the joys of very simple infusions – a couple of spices, water, and a delicious, calming, gentle beverage is born. One that can be drunk hot from the pot, left to cool to room temperature or on our 45C summer days, iced from the fridge.
The spiced infusions (we call them teas, although that is not technically correct) have their genesis in Ayurveda. According to this ancient Hindu medical system, every person has a dosha. Your dosha is often called your “type”, but really it is your imbalance. There are 3 doshas – vata, pitta and kapha, and you can be one of these, or a combination of them. Your dosha represents the “types” that are strongest for you.
BUT (and many don’t get this important point), having a type stronger than the others means that it is out of balance. In Ayurveda we strive for balance. If, for example, a person’s dosha is vata pitta, it means that they pay attention to keeping vata and pitta in check and raising the balance of kapha as required.
As Spring arrives, we turn from the hot milky drinks to lighter drinks that suit the weather more. One favourite is infused from cumin seed, coriander seed and fresh ginger. This is a vata drink for sure, although also gentle enough for other doshas to benefit from too.
Here are some suggestions. Please try them, even if you don’t know what dosha you are. There may be some that you don’t quite like, not because of the taste but because of something that you can’t quite put your finger on. This will mean that it is not quite right for your type. Try another infusion variety.
I often make my teas in a tea flask from T2. You can put the spices or tea directly into an insert that goes into the flask, and its special filter means that it strains the tea as it is poured. I can take the tea with me to the office or in the car for a road trip. It is very very handy. (I have not been asked to or paid to endorse this product.)
- Use 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon of each spice. Bruise them slightly and add hot almost boiling water.
- If you have a combined dosha, you can drink either tea or combine the spices from both doshas.
- Of course, life sometimes mean that our doshas become temporarily and differently out of balance. Choosing a tea for your current circumstances can help alleviate them.
Vata Tea : fresh ginger slices, cumin seed, coriander seed. Optionally add ajwain, nutmeg, cayenne pepper or black pepper (not tooo much) or/and 1 cinnamon stick.
Pitta Tea: cumin seed, coriander seed, fennel seed. You can optionally add fresh green coriander and dried rose petals.
Kapha Tea: fresh ginger slices, cinnamon stick and 2 – 3 cloves. Optionally add dill seed, turmeric and/or fenugreek seed.
Tridosha Tea: benefits all doshas. coriander, cardamom, fennel, cinnamon, spearmint.
**Note that I am not an Ayurvedic practitioner. Please also conduct your own research.
browse some of the Teas recipes
- A Balinese Ginger and Lemongrass Tea
- Cardamon, Cinnamon and Clove Tea
- The Making of Herbal Teas
- The 4 C’s Golden Spiced Tea
- Yogi Tea