Vegan Mood-Enhancing Dreamy Azure Latte

April 30, 2021
In my fondest childhood memory, I am lying in the sun on the Sicilian beach listening to the blue-green waves of Mediterranean Sea. My mother and her youngest sister, my zia Stella, are talking—I don’t quite understand the rhythmic pattern of their lively Italian conversation. Between the lapping waves, warm sand, and bright chatter, I feel myself slip into a kind of enchantment.

The Mediterranean Sea runs through my blood. Not only was I born in Sicily, but my mother’s family has lived on the island for thousands of years. I believe there is a connection to land and place that runs deep in our DNA, as though we contain atoms of the very Earth and Waters deep within us. That day on the beach, the Italian words, sparkly sand, and the lulling sea waves blended into a story of my belonging that still comes to me in my dreams.

If you have ever stood on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, you know that it is a mesmerizing shade of blue. In Italian, the word blue is "azzurro." When I first saw a cup of tea made from the butterfly peaflower, I felt that I was staring at the deep blue Mediterranean Sea. It was as though my island sea was speaking to me through the vibrations of color and time.

This Dreamy Seascape Azure Latte is made in honor of the azure-blue Mediterranean Sea. The main ingredient, butterfly peaflower has a host of health benefits. It is a mood enhancer, increases energy and stamina, and boosts collagen production for improved skin tone. It is anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, and it is said to also be an aphrodisiac. The addition of Hawthorn flower and leaves in this recipe adds a mild sedative quality and adds to the anti-anxiety qualities of this tea. These benefits make this latte even more dreamy. This latte includes Sicilian bergamot and vanilla, which will elevate the flavor and health benefits.

As you sip this foamy azure latte, may you be transported to your own dreamy seascape memories and be inspired to connect to your ancestral lands.

Note: herb infusions are called tisanes.

Vegan Mood-Enhancing Dreamy Azure Latte

Recipe Type: Beverages
utensils YIELDS 1 quart of dried tea blend, latte for 4
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  • 1 cup dried butterfly pea flower
  • 1 cup dried hawthorn flower and leaves
  • 1 cup dried mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup dried cornflower
  • 15 drops Bergamot Oil (use food-grade oils)
  • 2 Tbsp dried Vanilla Powder
  • 1 cup warm plant-based milk (cashew milk makes it extra creamy!)
  • 2–3 Tbsp finished dried tea blend (ingredients above)
  • 4 cups boiled water (175–180°F)
  • 1–2 tsp Sweetener of your choice (maple syrup is nice!)
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Directions

To make the herbal blend:

1. Mix the dried herbs and vanilla powder together in a large mixing bowl. Set aside. 

2. Add 15 drops of Bergamot oil to the bottom of a quart size mason jar. Cover the jar and shake so the oils coat the inside of the jar. Then add in the dried herbs and mix. You can cover and shake the jar to evenly spread the oils over the herbs. I find this method gently coats all the herbs in the aromatic oils.

To make the latte:

3. Warm up the milk (stovetop or microwave will do). Make a pot of tea (the tisane) in the traditional manner, using about 2–3 Tbs of the dried herb mix. I prefer to let my loose herbs float in the water instead of using paper tea bags. Let the tisane sit for about 4–5 minutes, then strain. Add the tea, warm milk, and sweetener of your choice to a blender and blend for about 40 seconds. This will give you lots of sea-foam like milk! Pour into a glass made for hot tea so that you can fully enjoy the color of this latte.

You might like to journal about your connection to the oceans and waters as you sip this delightful azzurro dream drink.

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Photo: Angie Follensbee-Hall


Angie Follensbee-Hall
Angie is an artist, creativity mentor, and yoga teacher. She was born on the captivating island of Sicily at the base of Mt. Etna, and grew up running around in the quiet mountains of New Hampshire and Vermont. Angie loves world cultures and has traveled across the US, Europe, and India. Her free-spirited childhood on two continents, cultural inspirations, and love of the natural world are primary influences in her art-making and creative living. Angie's studies include a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and a Master of Arts degree in Education and Creative Practice from Goddard College. She is an Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher at the 500 hour level, teaching for over 14 years, a Reiki Master Teacher, a Certified Traditional Herbalist, an Ayurvedic Lifestyle Practitioner, and an Attunement Energy practitioner. She has led over 5,000 hours of professional classes and workshops. Learn more about Angie and her offerings at her website: angiefollensbeehall.com

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