Jamaican herbal teas are botanical teas made from spices, roots, seeds leaves, barks, and flowers of local plants.
Herbal teas are referred to as tisanes or infusions. However in Jamaica they are simply called bush teas.
The 5 Popular Jamaican Herbal Teas
There are countless herbs for tea that grow on the island. We picked five herbal teas that are most well known.
If you are not a native of you island you may know these teas by other names. In any case they are used in the same way.
Fever Grass Tea
It is commonly known as lemongrass, in other places. Jamaican Fever grass tea is one of the island’s most popular herbal teas.
Fever grass tea is made by boiling the stems and blades of the plant for about 10 minutes.
Even though one would expect this tisane to have a grassy flavor, the flavor is more citrus like.
Fever grass tea is used to relieve, colds, fevers, headaches and indigestion.
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Jamaican Peppermint Tea
This herb for making tea is a rare plant that grows in only a few locations. It is more of a shrub.
Although Jamaican peppermint bush is not a “real” mint, it does have a strong mint flavor.
Jamaican bush mint tea is a staple in most Jamaican households. This is one of the go-to Jamaican herbal teas to ease indigestion.
The leaves and stems can last for a long time when they are dried and stored.
Jamaican Sarsaparilla Herbal Tea
Sarsaparilla tea is made from the root of the Smilax ornato plant. The dried roots are cut into small pieces or pulverized and brewed.
Sarsaparilla tea is believed to releive many conditions. Some of these conditions include lethargy and tiredness, low testosterone production, and brain fatigue.
As would be expected this tea has heavy woody flavor. So many times other herbs are combined with sarsaparilla to make this Jamaican herbal tea.
Quaco Bush Tea
Quaco bush tea is the name given to tea made from the Mikania mircrantha vine.
This tea is generally used to treat diarrhea, stomach cramps and other stomach ailments.
Jamaican quaco tea has a bitter taste and an unpleasant grassy flavor. The tea us made by boiling the fresh leave for about five minutes.
Mikania mircrantha vine can be found growing just about anywhere in Jamaica so it is easy to make quaco herbal tea.
Jamaican Cerasee Tea
Cerassee tea is possibly the most popular of all Jamaican herbal teas. Why is Cerasee tea so popular?
It is believed that Cerasse is tea with many benefits. These Cerasee tea benefits include a number of vitamins and minerals.
What Is Cerasee Tea? Cerasee tea is a herbal tea made from the Cerasee vine. The biological name of Cerasee is Momordica Charantia.
The tea is made from the leaves and stems of the Cerasee plant.
Cerasee tea can be made from fresh or dried Cerasee leaves.
This a bitter tasting Jamaican Cerasee tea that is usually sweetened with sugar or honey to make it more palatable.
Others are heavy, bitter, grassy or even floral flavored.
Then there are loose leaf and roots teas for anyone serious about their infusions.
Jamaican herbal teas are normally caffeine free tea. However, they come in have variety of flavors. Some bush teas are pure and clean tasting.
Tea vs Bush Tea
There is an endless list of herbs that can be used for making Jamaican herbal teas.
These herbal teas are generally thought of as health teas since it is believed that these are teas with benefits.
Then there is the matter of characteristics. Herbal teas are flavored teas. They take on the flavors and aromas of the tea herbs they are made from.
On the other hand traditional tea is made from one plant-Camellia sinensis– otherwise known as the tea plant.
While real tea can be found in different flavors, the difference is often related to how tea leaves are processed or what ingredients are added to the tea.
These are just a few of the herbal teas and infusions that can be found on the Island.
Commercially sold Jamaican bush teas come in three formulations. There are easy to steep tea bags and powered formulas for the beginner.
They can be purchased from local health stores and online market places.
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