Planting Our First Tea Bush For Making “Twig Tea”

Planting Our First Tea Bush For Making “Twig Tea” by David Briscoe

Sunday, May 18, 2014 , we planted our first tea bush in hopes that some day we can make our own kukicha “twig tea,” as well as green leaf tea. Our goal is to little by little attempt to make as many of the foods as we can that are usually imported for use in a traditional macrobiotic diet. Of course, it’s possible to have a macrobiotic diet without using twig tea, but we thought it would be fun and interesting, and more economical, to grow the tea that we personally like to use often.

The tea bush pictured is one of five we will be planting to make a hedge that we hope will produce enough tea for us and our family. The variety we chose is the kind that is commonly cultivated in Japan. It produces smaller leaves and more stems.

One of the benefits of twig tea that we appreciate the most is its alkaline support in the body
When properly prepared, the twigs release their minerals into the water, creating a mineral-rich alkaline brew. We make twig tea from the loose twigs, not from kukicha tea bags. The tea bags don’t release the same amount of minerals into the water, since simply steeping the tea bag in a cup of hot water doesn’t allow much of the twigs mineral content to be released. We prefer cooking the loose twigs for 15-20 minutes. Loose kukicha tea twigs can be purchased at many natural foods stores, or bought online. If the resulting tea seems too dark or too concentrated for you, simply add more water until it’s the color and dilution that you prefer.

We hope you’ll come and visit us at the Macrobiotics America “Whole Way House” in Oroville, CA, to share a cup of tea with us!

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