Remember this plant? The one that’s growing in the tea garden, and I took a nice photo of, but didn’t know its name, but I liked the photo, so I still put it on the internet in a previous blog post?
It turns out this is Mamaki, a plant that is only native to Hawai’i and is known for its medicinal qualities. Mamaki is commonly made into a cleansing herbal tea, which is good for digestion and general relaxation. (That sounds like code for “a laxative that will get you high,” but it’s not.)
I was told by some of the other farmies (folks who work here) that just a few leaves would make a nice tea, so I picked three good-looking ones. One of my friends here said that the best way to make Mamaki Tea was to crush up the leaves and let them steep for at least five minutes.
I gave it about 15 minutes, having heard that Mamaki is a light tea, and wanting to be sure to extract as much flavor as possible.
I worried about not adding any sweetener, especially when I smelled the tea and it didn’t seem all that appealing. So far, none of my herbal teas have been great successes, so I took a sip apprehensively.
Amazingly, it had a nice flavor! Mamaki tastes similar to a light green tea — smooth and easy to drink.
A successful Tea Tuesday — what a nice change of pace.