Goji berry tea

It belongs to the herbal tea section: a type of red fruit dried to the size of the eraser at the end of an HB pencil, but skinnier and wrinklier. I’ve had dried goji berries before at a Chinese herbal medicine stores, and it was salty like salted plum. It was good, I almost got a bag home to munch. Steeped in boiling water for quite some time (2-2.5 minutes), this goji berry tastes nothing like that salted goji berry, but it’s still excellent. The “tea” shines a topaz color, tastes gently sweet, as I described to Mutsumi, “like a kind of grassy plant with hollow stalks that grows near water bodies, in the same family or genus as bamboo or reed…”

– Wow that’s really specific! – says Mutsumi – The closest thing I can think of is sugarcane juice.
– Well, it’s close to sugarcane juice, but sugarcane is more sugary.

The conversation halted there, I couldn’t remember the name of that plant even in Vietnamese, but I knew I had drunk this flavor before. When I asked my mom, she immediately said: “Mía lau. I used to boil buckets of it for you. The drink cools the body really well.” Some people call mía lau “dwarf sugarcane”, but I don’t agree (it looks more like “super skinny sugarcane” than “dwarf sugarcane”), and I haven’t pinned down its official English name yet, if it has one. But I know for sure it belongs to the bamboo or reed family. And the amazing thing is that this red little berry makes a drink that tastes exactly like that plant!

I tried to outsteep it. Three times, 5 times, 7 times. Then my tummy just got too full and the berries showed no sign of losing flavors. Goji berry: 1. Mai: too much tea.

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1 comment for “Goji berry tea

  1. Minh
    August 14, 2012 at 3:46 am

    Sang nay Bi day ngoi san sau nghe chim hot mo ra trang web con thay ket noi internet tot. Mo ra xem bi co hieu gi dau, nhung van mo xem choi.

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