At work, these are the gorgeous Ayurvedic teas I offer to my clients. I choose the tea specifically for them based on the season, their constitution, or to balance aggravated doshas. For example, the combination of Cinnamon, Fennel Seeds, Cloves, Black Pepper and Ginger in the Kapha tea (Re-Energise Tea) makes it very warming and therefore pacifies Kapha (water + earth elements).
At home, we like to mix it up… When you open my kitchen cupboards, you’ll find a disorganised array of jars, boxes and spices amongst the teacups. The icebox in the freezer is filled with pretty icecubes, like so many miniature icebergs with plants and flowers trapped inside, waiting to be thawed.
Making a pot of tea in our house is an occasion. The children have learned to medicate themselves with herbs and spices and it really works. Grazed knees are soothed, sore throats and bad moods eased – all with the help of a teabag, or some dried herbs foraged in the summer or fresh herbs from the garden. Our favourite tea time is whilst supper is cooking – we’ll have a pot of tea on the table and homework or playing cards out and we’ll play, drink tea and just hang out, waiting for the food to cook. In a house with four children, the kitchen is a busy, social place and I absolutely adore it. Over a cup of tea we discuss deep matters of the soul, hopes and dreams or we laugh about the time when…
My eldest is 16 and it won’t be long now before he is absent from our social tea times, and it makes my heart ache to think that there will soon be an empty chair at the kitchen table. But I know that I have taught him well. There will be plenty times, I’m sure, that he’ll be hung over in the future, or feeling dull and heavy from too much junk food – but I know that he’ll be able to whip something up to make himself feel better – a cup of tea, heal-all kitchari or a heartening stew. He’ll be OK.
Dear parents: make time for fun and silliness with your children. Have adventures, teach them about plants, their duty of care to the Earth and then come together as often as possible to just hang out and bond. At a time when technology seems to be taking over, it is heartening to see my children sitting around the kitchen table – not a phone in sight.