An infusion is a large amount of herb brewed for a long time. Typically,
one ounce by weight (about a cup by volume) of dried herb is placed
in a quart jar which is then filled to the top with boiling water,
tightly lidded and allowed to steep for 4-10 hours. After straining,
a cup or more is consumed, and the remainder chilled to slow spoilage.
Drinking 2-4 cups a day is usual. Since the minerals and other phytochemicals
in nourishing herbs are made more accessible by drying, dried herbs
are considered best for infusions.
I make my infusions at night before I go to bed and they are ready
in the morning. I put my herb in my jar and my water in the pot, and
the pot on the fire, then brush my teeth (or sweep the floor) until
the kettle whistles. I pour the boiling water up to the rim of the
jar, screw on a tight lid, turn off the stove and the light, and go
In the morning, I strain the plant material out, squeezing
it well, and drink the liquid. I prefer it iced, unless the morning
is frosty. I drink the quart of infusion within 36 hours or until
it spoils. Then I use it to water my house plants, or pour it over
my hair after washing as a final rinse which can be left on.
My favorite herbs for infusion are nettle, oatstraw, red clover,
and comfrey leaf, but only one at a time. The tannins in red clover
and comfrey make me pucker my lips, so I add a little mint, or bergamot,
when I infuse them, just enough to flavor the brew slightly. A little
salt in your infusion may make it taste better than honey will.
Here are some links to other articles I have written that you will
want to read: