Sunday, August 26, 2012

Goji Berry Tea For Sparkling Eyes

Each Sunday I try to find a new herbal recipe to test. I love my Sundays when I lounge at home, listening to the jazz channel and sipping homemade herbal tea while reading.

Today I dug out some wolfberries or "kei chi" or goji berries from the fridge. I am usually running out of space in my fridge because all my herbs go into the fridge.

In this tropical weather, herbs will either dry out or go mouldy if you keep them too long in the cabinets. One distinct way to know if your wolfberries are deteriorating is to see their bright red colour becoming a dull, dirty red. That's why you know your wolfberries can go into the compost bin! (Or maybe you can stick them into some soil and grow your own goji berry plants. I might try this though finding available space in my already thriving garden can be tough!)

This packet of wolfberries is considered Super Grade because each wolfberry is larger than regular itty bitty ones you see in most pre-packed herbal soup packets. My regular Chinese herbal guy recommended that not only is this better grade, it is also recommended that one takes a handful of these wolfberries each day. The back of the packet says this:

wolfberries from ningxia region of china - good for kidneys and liver

The best wolfberries come from the Ningxia region of China. (I first came across Ningxia when I drank some Ningxia Red, a product from Young Living. While I like that the drink packs a power punch of antioxidants, I get really hungry after 20 minutes! That said, Ningxia Red products supposedly contain the powerful wolfberries from the famous goji berry producer, the Ningxia region.) 

Just so you know, Ningxia is the principal region of China where wolfberries are grown. 

dried goji berries from ningxia china

Anyway, today's recipe uses 3 basic ingredients or herbs you can find in any Chinese home. You need a handful of each - dried chrysanthemum flowers, dried longan and goji berries. 

Place these into a pot with about 1 liter of water and let it simmer for 15 minutes on the lowest fire. Drink this as a tea throughout the day. 
dried longan, goji berries and chrysanthemum flowers for herbal tea
From top right: dried longan flesh, goji berries, chrysanthemum flowers

If you're really lazy, you can just steep these ingredients in a teapot but I find simmering on low heat brings out the best in the longan - at least they'll expand properly and release their sweetness into the tea. 

This tea helps with dizzyness and improving the health of your eyes. Highly useful if you (like me) work long hours in front of the computer. 

You may also want to know, how often should you consume teas such as these? I say once or twice a week is good enough. Never go overboard and overdo things. 

Whenever I think of excessiveness, think of this: you should eat something regularly rather than consume a big pot of it at one go. 

Health is about regular maintenance. You wouldn't eat 7 apples in one sitting would you, even if apples are great for health? It's better to eat one apple a day than gobble all 7 on a Sunday night!

Update: add a few goji berries to your hot tea - this way you'll always be eating this superfood!

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