Chrysanthemum is popular as a summertime tea ingredient in southern China, but the flower grows in Canada’s climate, too. In fact, most mums prefer longer nights, so we can enjoy them into the autumn. If you grow honeysuckle, choose a non-invasive variety.
Dried blossoms or teas of both—believed to have a cooling effect on the body—can be found at traditional Chinese medicine suppliers and some health food stores.
While the blossom of the honeysuckle flower and its sweet nectar are edible, most honeysuckle varieties have poisonous berries.
2 Tbsp (30 mL) dried chrysanthemum flowers
2 Tbsp (30 mL) dried honeysuckle blossoms
3/4 cup (180 mL) unsweetened apple juice, plus 1/2 cup (125 mL) for ice cubes
1 Tbsp (15 mL) peeled and grated fresh ginger
Pinch of cayenne (optional)
Place dried chrysanthemum and honeysuckle in jug or jar that holds at least 4 cups (1 L).
In medium pot over high heat, bring 4 cups (1 L) water, 3/4 cup (180 mL) apple juice, and ginger to a boil. Boil uncovered for 2 minutes. Pour over dried flowers and steep for 10 minutes.
Strain solids out of liquid and return liquid to jug or jar. Chill in refrigerator for 3 to 8 hours.
While tea is chilling, prepare ice cubes by mixing 1/2 cup (125 mL) apple juice with 1/4 cup (60 mL) water and cayenne (if desired) and freezing in ice cube tray.
Serve chilled tea over ice.