Rooibos, the wondrous! Rooibos, red bush tea and "wonder tea"
these are some of the names by which this miraculous beverage that has been consumed for centuries by the natives of South Africa is known. Now it has now gained fans the world over, thanks to its special qualities that make it undoubtedly a superfood...
Even though many have attempted to cultivate the Rooibos plant
in different places and soils across the world, they have always been unsuccessful. It grows exclusively in the Cedarberg region, North of Cape Town in South Africa, where the unique subsoil and microclimate of the region allow it to thrive. This year's limited production meant that the already high demand for it skyrocketed.
The most widespread Rooibos variety is the red one, where the leaves get their red brown colour, after a simple process of oxidization and drying, similar to the one followed when making black tea. A rarer type of Rooibos is green, which is processed like green tea, thus retaining the green colour of the leaves and is redolent of the flavours of green tea when brewed.
But why is Rooibos tea so popular? Possibly because of its slightly sweet and nutty taste with hints of berries' aromas which makes it a great favourite. Then again it could be its ability to harmonise perfectly with fruits, spices and herbs. Or the fact that it is caffeine free, making it a perfectly safe choice for toddlers, kids, or indeed adults that either abstain from or want to reduce their caffeine intake, or for those following homeopathy.
Above all, it is its health benefits and contribution to disease prevention that give it its appeal. A wealth of scientific research corroborates the indigenous people's beliefs, confirming its anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory properties. Moreover, it contributes to preventing cardiovascular diseases, heart attacks and cancer, can play a part in healing dermatological problems such as dry skin, acne and eczema and can also help insomnia thanks to the absence of caffeine.
At "Tea Route", apart from organic Rooibos Naturel), you can try a blend series based on Rooibos.
First Recipe: Rooibos poached pears
- 4 pears, peeled
- 750ml of water
- 5tsp Rooibos Massai leaves
- 2tbs honey
- 2tbs lemon juice
Brew the Rooibos Massai tea.
Add the brewed tea, honey, lemon and ginger in a small saucepan. Bring to the boil over a high heat and then reduce the temperature to the lowest scale, add the pears and allow to simmer for about 15 minutes or until the pears are soft but firm.
Remove the pears and let the sauce simmer for about 15 minutes more, until it has turned to syrup.
Drizzle the pears with sauce and serve.
It matches perfectly with Greek yogurt or vanilla ice cream.
Second Recipe: Rooibos Latte
Ingredients for 1 cup
- ½ cup of water
- 3tsp Rooibos Abyssinia leaves
- ½ cup milk (of your choice)
- Honey to taste
- 1 drop of vanilla extract
Brew the concentrated Rooibos Abyssinia tea.
Add the honey and one drop of vanilla extract to the Rooibos tea.
Heat the milk and give it a thicker consistency either with an electric milk frother or a French press.
Pour the hot milk to the Rooibos tea, grate some cinnamon and enjoy!!
*You can try this Rooibos latte recipe
either with our organic Rooibos Naturel or with your favourite Rooibos blends!