Raspberry Leaf Tea:
Raspberry leaf tea has been used for centuries as a folk medicine to treat canker sores, cold sores, and gingivitis in persons of all ages and anemia, leg cramps, diarrhea, and morning sickness in pregnant women, and as a uterine relaxant.
Once you’ve collected a decent amount of leaves, give them a quick rinse and dry them out. I use a dehydrator and just use the herb setting and check the leaves every so often to see if they are dried.
Once your leaves are completely dry, it’s time to break them up. I like to process the leaves in batches, as needed, throughout the year. Freshly broken leaves are more potent than leaves that have been left to sit for months on end, so only use enough for your immediate needs.
There are several methods for breaking up your raspberry leaves. I use a food processor, but use whatever you have. Even your fingers will work. Use a teaspoon or so of broken leaves in an 8 oz. cup of not quite boiling water and steep for 3-8 minutes.
I can’t wait for my tea, so I never can wait 8 minutes. Steep to suit your taste, and add some honey if you prefer a sweeter cup of tea.
Store your leaves out of direct sunlight in an airtight container such as a glass jar with lid.
For more information about raspberry leaf tea there are a couple of books: Gray, B. 2011.The boreal herbal. Wild food and medicine plants of the north. Aroma Borealis Press. Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada.
Schofield, Janice. 1989. Discovering wild plants. Alaska Northwest Books. Washington.
The tea is light and airy even when steeped for 8 mins. I do have a great recipe for fermented fireweed leaf tea if anyone is interested!