So why the name fireweed? It is one of the first plants to emerge after a forest fire.
Fireweed tea isn’t just dried but fermented. After fresh plants are foraged, leaves are allowed to cure in a glass jar. The fermentation process allows a deeper, fruity flavor to develop.
Quick Steps to Making Fireweed Tea
- Collect Fireweed plants.
- Remove leaves and smash with your hands.
- Let ferment for 2 days in glass jar.
- Dry in oven for 20 minutes.
- Brew for a delicious and healthy beverage!
- Forage for 1 lb fireweed leaves. Collect them just below the blossom using scissors or a small knife. Do not use leaves too near the ground as they can look weepy and do not ferment as well.
- Using your hands, smash leaves so they are “broken.” Place in glass jar with lid. Store in humid environment for 2 days, shaking once or twice a day and quickly discarding any sign of molding leaves.
- After 2 days, place leaves on a cookie sheet. Preheat oven to 350F and bake leaves for 20 minutes until they are completely dry. Let cool and store in a air-tight container for up to a year.
- Brew tea to desired strength following the same method that you would for other loose tea leaves.