Red tea or rooibos tea is an infusion-type drink that originated in South Africa. Consumed since the dawn of time by the natives who appreciate it for its medicinal virtues, it has seduced the hearts of Europeans for some years. Its nutty flavor and properties give it many advantages both in terms of taste and health.
The name " rooibos " comes from the patois of the first African settlers and means " red bush ". Nowadays, rooibos is the national drink in South Africa. It does not contain any theine and can therefore be consumed at any time. This does not detract from its many benefits to the body. It is called " red tea " because of the color it takes on when it is made, but in reality, it is not really part of the tea family. Rooibos is more like an herbal tea or an infusion.
Rooibos tea is an infusion from a variety of broom endemic to South Africa
Rooibos tea originates from a mountainous region 200 kilometers from Cape Town in South Africa. It comes not from a tea plant or Camelia Sinensis but from a shrub of the broom family called Aspalathus linearis. Rooibos is therefore not strictly speaking a tea but is in fact closer to an herbal tea sinceit contains neither theine nor caffeine.
This is a great advantage since rooibos can be drunk at any time of the day. In the evening, you can drink red tea without fearing difficulties to fall asleep, as it is sometimes the case with theine or caffeine.
Red rooibos is mostly cultivated in South Africa, in high altitude plantations. It has been consumed there for several centuries. It was then exported all over the world and became a very popular drink in our country, for its many virtues. Just like tea, rooibos is a real health ally.
Preparing rooibos tea, the traditional South African recipe
Rooibos tea has asweet hazelnut flavor and can be used to make very tasty infusions. It is traditionally drunk plain with milk and a little sugar like the traditional English tea. ThisSouth African tea is becoming more and more popular in Europe where tea lovers also like to drink it plain or to enjoy its benefits in combinationsflavored with spices, flowers or citrus fruits.
The preparation of rooibos is quite similar to that of tea. Simply steep the leaves in hot water, using a filter or a tea ball. To enjoy the unique flavors of red tea, it is important to respect the infusion time and water temperature. This information is indicated on the package and may vary from one type of red tea to another. Rooibos has a naturally sweet and mild taste: no need to add sugar. It also allows you to enjoy a drink with absolutely no calories! It can be drunk hot or as an iced rooibos tea.
What is the origin of the red Rooibos tea?
Red Rooibos tea comes from an endemic species of broom in South Africa. It is traditionally consumed by the natives for its numerous medicinal virtues.
The plant at the origin of the rooibos tea is none other than the Aspalatus Linearis. The leaves are harvested at the beginning of the year and then oxidized. They are then dried in the sun: it is there that they take the characteristic color of rooibos. The red tea can be packaged as is: it is then plain rooibos. But to vary the flavors, there are many mixtures. The rooibos is then married with different flavors, often fruity, to compose unique and original tastes: vanilla rooibos tea, orange lemon rooibos organic ... You have the possibility to vary your drinks according to your desires.
Rooibos, red tea, rooibos infusion: what are the differences?
The rooibos tea is also called the rouge in French, wrongly because it is not a tea. It should be called rooibos infusion since it contains neither caffeine nor tannins.
You often hear different terms for it: rooibos, red tea, infusion... Is there a difference between all these names? To tell the truth: no. It is important to remember that it is not correct to call it "tea" because there is no theine in this drink. You can then speak ofinfusion or herbal tea rooibos. Note also that rooibos is not always red: there are other variants. Green rooibos, for example, is a non-fermented variation, which is becoming more and more popular for its exceptional virtues. In this case of course, talking about "red tea" is no longer coherent.
Fermentation process of rooibos tea
Like tea, rooibos tea is picked and then its leaves are dried before being consumed. Once dried, they have a characteristic needle-like shape and a beautiful garnet color.
There are different manufacturing processes. Red rooibos, the most famous, is made with leaves to which water is added. Thus, they oxidize, in a process that can last from 8 to 24 hours. In other cases, there is no fermentation and it is called green rooibos. This variety dries directly in the sun, without adding water. The leaves keep all their benefits. The rooibos comes in the form of small pieces of leaves, which are then packaged. Loose rooibos tea can be combined with other flavors to create blends.
Why choose organic rooibos?
Organic rooibos is an organically grown red tea, meaning it has not been treated with harmful pesticides. Only organic teas and herbal teas assure you a high level of quality and a safe consumption.
But what is really the point of consuming organic rooibos red tea? You have no idea what you can find in your cup when you choose a tea that is not organic. In fact, the leaves are not washed before brewing, so when the tea is full of pesticides and chemicals, you ingest them directly! So you can see whyyou should choose an organic rooibos tea: it is not aggressively processed. In addition to the obvious benefits for your health, the taste of organic rooibos is also much better. So why deprive yourself of it?