How to Make Fennel Tea Using Seeds
Making Fennel Tea
If your experience of making tea is only using a teabag, I'll show you how simple it is to make fennel tea from seeds. Don't be misled by sites which say you have to grind the seeds; you don't need to do this.
When I make fennel tea, I normally make half a teapot. That will give me enough for two large mugs of tea. I fill a medium-sized saucepan a third full of tap water. This is about 20 ounces or 600 ml.
Into this, I sprinkle two teaspoons of fennel seeds. These seeds are left whole as in the photo below. I don't grind them or crush them. I cover the pan and bring this to a boil. Once the tea has boiled, it will have a greenish hue, and an anise smell will tell you that the seeds are reacting with the boiling water.
I pour the boiled water and seeds into my teapot. My teapot has an internal strainer, which is called an infuser, that prevents any particles passing through into my cup.
That's all there is to making fennel tea. You don't need to try and source fresh fennel bulbs; there is no chopping or pounding involved and no mess! I just tip the boiled seeds into my compost bin.
Although I don't sweeten my tea, you can use a sweetener such as sugar, honey, agave, or stevia.
Since arriving in Brazil, I've been introduced to many different things, one of which was making various medicinal teas. Don't get hung up on the term medicinal because you don't have to be ill to enjoy a cup of fennel tea.
When I looked on the internet about fennel tea, most of the pages I saw were using the fine leaves or cutting up the bulb and making tea with this. For me, this wasn't helpful because in all the time I have lived here, I have never seen the bulb for sale. I live in a provincial area and rarely go to a large supermarket.
For me, using the seeds was the only option. Here too, I looked on the internet and was surprised to see people weren't making the tea the same way I was. I don't crush the seeds, as it's unnecessary.
Medicinal Uses of Fennel
Fennel has been used for centuries in many countries for its curative properties. Some of these have documented studies to back up fennel's effectiveness, and some are passed down through the generations.
I personally drink it as a warming tea but have made it for people who visit and complain of feeling nauseous. For me, I have seen benefits to digestion problems in myself and my children. When I lived in the UK, I bought gripe water which is sold as a traditional remedy for intestinal wind and colic. Gripe water is made with a base of fennel. Sometimes it contains ginger, lemon balm, and even charcoal to help soothe a baby who is irritable due to having a tummy ache or trapped wind.
That is as far as I will go without seeing concrete studies proving more.
I have seen wild unsubstantiated claims that it will:
- Burn fat by speeding up the metabolism
- Help with weight loss because of its diuretic properties
- Clean the kidneys
- Treat liver disease
The list goes on and on, and although I search those pages for references of medical sites confirming their validity, there doesn't seem to be research data to back up these claims.
A Cure for Toad Venom
Here in Brazil, fennel tea has other uses. A few years ago, we had an incident where my husband was removing cane toads from our farm. Cane toads secrete a poisonous substance when they feel threatened, and some of this hit my husband in the eye. He quickly rinsed his eyes, but he still felt there was something wrong. I drove him to the hospital where a doctor examined his eyes. He said there was no permanent damage.
After speaking with a friend who was a nurse here in Brazil, she came over to help my husband. The first thing she did was to put fennel seeds in a pan of water for tea. She carefully rinsed the eyes with a gentle eye wash solution and then applied human breast milk using an eye dropper! Apparently, here in the rural area, I live in, the application of breast milk to eye problems is normal. Needless to say, I was surprised but thankful for this local knowledge.
She said that the milk would neutralize the venom and the drinking of the fennel tea would remove toxins from the body because of its diuretic properties.
My husband suffered no long-term effects from his ordeal other than remembering to be more careful when removing them.
After reading this will you be making fennel tea?
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© 2018 Mary Wickison