In Greek: τσαι του βουνου (pronounced TSAH-ee too voo-NOO)
Greek Mountain Tea is made using the dried leaves and flowers of Sideritis plants (ironwort). The tea is aptly named: the plant used to make it is found on rocky slopes at elevations over 3,200 feet (1000 meters). These plants are hardy flowering perennials that have adapted to survive with little water and little soil. Only one type of this plant, Sideritis raeseri, is cultivated – and only in Greece; otherwise, this and other types are gathered in the wild.
1/2 ounce of the dried leaves and flowers
1 quart of boiling water
Pour boiling water over the tea and let steep for no longer than 10 minutes.
Strain and drink (with honey, sugar, or plain).
Serving suggestions: Serve Mountain Tea at breakfast or before retiring at night, with Kalamata (black) olives, feta cheese, and crusty bread.
Greek grandmother’s rule of thumb: At least one cup a day! Here’s to your health!