Tea for non-tea people: Rooibos!

I have recently discovered a wonderful tea that I can’t get enough of, even though I have always been a die-hard coffee drinker. I found it in my neighborhood grocery store, of all places–they put in a bulk tea dispenser last year, and I can now buy all manner of exotic leaf teas. Never one to scoff at culinary adventure, I bought myself a tea ball, and little sample-sized bags of several different flavors of tea.

What I have discovered is that I sometimes enjoy jasmine tea, but I ALWAYS enjoy Rooibos. Rooibos means “Red Bush” in Afrikaans, and rooibos tea is also called “Bush Tea” in some places in southern Africa. (If you are a reader of the wonderful novels about the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, set in Botswana, by Alexander McCall Smith, you will recall that Mma Precious Ramotswe drinks bush tea.)

Well, I happened to mention to my friend Ellen, who grew up in Africa, that I had discovered rooibos tea, she exclaimed, “Oh! That is so GOOD for you!” So I went and googled “health benefits of rooibos tea”, and it turns out there are a good many. It’s good for chronic upset tummies, for colicky babies, for stress, for troubled skin, and many other things. It’s also chock-full of anti-oxidants, and aids in the absorption of several crucial minerals.

As well, Rooibos is an Attractive tea. It comes as very fine strings of dark red, and brews into a rich, dark golden liquid that smells deep and earthy, and tastes as golden as it looks.

If you cannot find Rooibos in your local grocery store, you can look here for it.