Have you all seen this beautiful blue tea all over the internet? I exaggerate, but it is definitely everywhere on the instagram map! In my mind, it had got to be something truly exotic, imported and awfully expensive, till I decided to dig a little deeper ( believe me, I didn't have to go far!). And ladies and gentlemen, this is my grand discovery - Clitoria ternatea, also known as Aparajita, Butterfly pea, Asian pigeonwings or Blue pea, is a flowering plant that bears white and blue flowers. It's a commonly growing creeper in India ( and in some South East Asian countries) in our gardens and in the wild too!! Its been right here all my life and I just noticed, oh well, better late than never!
All parts of this plant are used for medicinal purposes in Ayurveda. It's widely used in the Panchkarma treatment - for detoxification and balancing all the doshas.
It helps improve memory, learning and reducing stress. Alleviates internal inflammation due to its anti-inflammatory properties. Great for enhancing digestion and helps with the absorption of nutrients. Blue tea flower tea is also full of antioxidants and protects against free radicals. Studies have also shown that this tea is able to increase collagen production and skin elasticity, which would give them excellent anti-aging properties. It causes the levels of the neurotransmitter, acetylcholine to increase. Acetylcholine is one of the chemicals in the brain that decreases the most with age. Acetylcholine helps to facilitate communication within the brain itself. Lowering blood pressure, strengthening the respiratory system and relieving general pain, are few of the other healing properties of this plant.
It also has another magical property, add a few drops of lemon juice to the tea and watch it go from blue to a mesmerizing purple! It tastes pretty much like a green tea, best described as "earthy". We enjoy it, unsweetened, warm and cold ( though these days iced is my preference). I also like to make a little infused water concoction with the tea, a few slices of cucumber and a teaspoon of saunf or fennel seeds. Fennel seeds further aid digestion and keep the bloating at bay. Keep the pitcher in the refrigerator and enjoy chilled glasses throughout the day.
Many of the south-east Asian countries, use this as a natural food color too. Though I haven't personally tried any of the dishes myself, I'm happy to experiment a bit a bring some to this blog. If you don't have fresh flowers available for making this tea, you can easily order it online now. Or maybe you can grow the plant in your garden or balcony. Please do check with your local nursery if you can get the seeds.
I’d love to hear from you! Please tag me on Instagram @tashasartisanfoods, using the hashtag #tashasartisanfoods. You can also FOLLOW ME on INSTAGRAM, PINTEREST for more fabulous recipes! Do subscribe to Tasha’s Artisan Foods so you’ll never miss a recipe!
Blue Pea Flower Tea
- 2 cups Water
- 5-6 Dried flowers
- 1 tsp honey Optional
- 1 tsp Lemon juice Optional
For the infused water:
- 4-5 slices Cucumber
- 1 tsp Fennel seeds/ Saunf
For the Tea:
- Bring the water to a boil. Pour over the dried flowers. Steep for about 10 minutes, till the water turns blue.
- Add some honey and lemon juice if you like. Its great warm, but I really liked it unsweetened and cold. Enjoy!
For the Infused Water:
- Add a teaspoon of saunf/ fennel seeds to the water. Let it come up to a boil. Proceed to make the tea. Once the tea is cooled, add cucumber slices. Refrigerate the pitcher. Enjoy chilled!