Peach and vanilla infusion, description and properties:

The penetrating aroma of vanilla blends with the enveloping sweetness of peaches, in a refined blend with a delicate, summery flavour. Infusion with a soft and well-balanced flavour, with a strong aroma but sweetened by the notes of vanilla and the summery and velvety tone of peach. A thirst-quenching and tasty drink which, prepared cold, will be ideal for a regenerating break on long summer afternoons.

In winter, the exotic fragrance of the hot drink with vanilla and tropical notes (pineapple, papaya, hibiscus) will bring the sun in an extraordinary combination of aromas. In every season, you will be able to savor the fruits and ingredients of the mixture, thanks to the "drink and eat" formula of this infusion.

Peach and vanilla infusion: properties and benefits

By taking this infusion, you will be able to enjoy the detoxifying benefits of the mixture. In particular, pineapple and peach promote diuresis, counteracting water retention and facilitating the expulsion of excess toxins in the body. With their draining properties, the elements of the infusion help in weight control, for those who want a detox effect that helps during slimming diets. The infusion is also a rich source of vitamins and minerals, including potassium, calcium and fluoride. Their presence allows the infusion to give its remineralizing and restorative qualities. After a summer day in which water and minerals are lost, an invigorating drink like this peach and vanilla infusion is excellent. Even in winter, the properties of some ingredients help the immune defenses and our well-being. Various minerals are beneficial for maintaining healthy bones and teeth, while there is no shortage of vitamin C (rosehip, hibiscus, peach, grape) and carotenoids (vitamin A) useful for the cardiovascular system and the skin. At a digestive level, apple, papaya and pineapple help the assimilation of food and intestinal transit. The infusion reduces irritation and facilitates intestinal movements, supporting the well-being of the digestive system as a natural remedy in case of constipation, gastritis or colitis. Vanilla contributes to digestive well-being, stimulating the production of gastric juices - as well as generally relaxing our body. The peaches, grapes, hibiscus and other ingredients in the blend are an excellent source of antioxidants, phytochemicals that protect cells from free radical damage and help our natural defenses.

Origins and history of cultivation

Vanilla, which comes from a plant of the Orchidaceae family, is a tropical climbing plant famous for the aroma of its pods. The plant is native to the eastern coast of Mexico, in the tropical forests where it began to be planted during the colonial period. The particular Bourbon Vanilla was born from a process of manual fertilization of the orchid on the island of Bourbon, today called Réunion Island. Since then this variety was exported to Madagascar, and today vanilla is cultivated in many other countries.

The Bourbon variety is excellent for flavoring milk, desserts and duck dishes with its floral aroma with cocoa notes. The flowers of the orchid are very important, as they are part of the particular process to obtain vanilla. They only bloom for 6 months of the year, during flowering, when the plant has reached about 3 meters in length. Only one flower opens per day, which opens in the evening and never opens again. It is the flower's only opportunity to be pollinated by insects, and if this does not happen, it falls. When pollination is successful, the fruit forms, a slowly ripening pod. It is harvested unripe, but still needs several months to reach a length of approximately 20 cm. The collected pods are subjected to maceration in hot water, dried in the sun and then dried. Storage must take place indoors to maintain humidity, which gives the flavoring principle to these parts of the plant. The crystallization of the vanilla seeds occurs in this phase, in small dark needles, obtained from the slow manufacturing process.

Bourbon Vanilla gives odorless fruits, but they obtain their typical aroma by undergoing a fermentation process on the plant. Other varieties are Mexican vanilla, Java vanilla (less sweet), Thaiti vanilla with a sugary flavor, and Guadeloupe vanilla (floral). The peach is a tree that probably derives from China, widespread in cultivation as far as the Mediterranean and in other parts of Europe, up to the American continent. Cultivated beginslly in the noble gardens, the spread of the peach tree and its fruits on the table began during the nineteenth century. Peach orchards are cared for and replanted often, given that the plant has a short life (8-10 years) compared to other fruit trees, as well as being intolerant to cold and excessively mild winters. Among the many varieties developed are yellow-fleshed and white-fleshed peaches. Through various grafts and crops, peaches are now grown and sold all over the world. They represent very important fruits on a commercial level, especially for the main producers: Italy, China, Spain and the United States.

Fruits and flowers

The peach plant is Prunus persica, of the Rosaceae family. Peach trees are usually small to medium in size, displaying glossy green leaves and usually pink - occasionally white flowers. Some varieties of the plant are grown for the succulent, sweet pulp of the fruits. Peaches usually appear red with yellow shades and various shades, with more or less intense colors in these shades.

Vanilla derives from the vine Vanilla planifolia, the most important species among the 110 of the Vanilla genus. They all belong to the Orchidaceae family. These plants display numerous flowers, from creamy white to pale green, which open in turns and last only one day. The fruit is a long capsule: it gives pods from which seeds and vanilla aroma are extracted. They derive from various types of orchids including Polynesian Vanilla x-tahitensis and the Bourbon Vanilla present in the infusion, which grows in Madagascar and on Reunion Island (formerly Bourbon Island).

The rosehip is the false fruit of some species of rose, a perennial plant of the Rosaceae family. It often derives from the Rosa Canina but also from the Rugosa, Acicularis or Cinnamomea species. There are thousands of rose cultivars, in the form of upright or climbing shrubs, and most derive from Asia. The flowers change shape, size and color, while the rosehip appears oval, fleshy and red. Rose hips represent the mature ovary that remains on the branch after the flower, and inside they contain approximately 3 small seeds.

The apple is botanically known as Malus domestica, a plant of the Rosaceae family. It is a tree native to Asia, now widespread throughout the planet. The fruits differ in colors and in many varieties, which distinguish the many apples by color, size and consistency of the pulp. Ananas comosus is a plant of the Bromeliaceae family. It grows not very tall, better on well-drained soil, exposed to the sun. It gives the fruits that appear with the shape that resembles a pine cone. Pineapples are formed by the union of the flowers and berries of the plant, which create a single fruit.

The hibiscus plant, the Hibiscus sabdariffa, belongs to the Malvaceae family. It grows in tropical and subtropical regions around the world, and is used in different parts. The calyx and flowers are used for hibiscus tea, as well as for creating flavors and colorings.

The Carica papaya is a tree of the Caricaceae family. The tree, with little branching, reaches up to 10 meters in height, growing best in a warm or temperate temperature. The fruits are distinguished by color between green, yellow, orange and pink. They can reach up to 30 cm and weigh 9 kg. The grape comes from the Vitis vinifera L. plant, a genus belonging to the Vitaceae family.
It is a vigorous climber, which can easily cover walls and surfaces. It displays large leaves and tiny green flowers. The famous fruits are collected in bunches, different based on the variety of the vine. Nutritional values of the peach and vanilla infusion. There are mineral salts that perform important functions in our body such as potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, phosphorus. The infusion makes vitamins A, C, E, some of group B, and antioxidants such as beta-carotene available.

How to use the ingredients in the infusion

The infusion is obtained by placing approximately 3-5 grams of the peach and vanilla mixture with water at 100 °C in a cup (250 ml).

Leave to infuse for 10 to 12 minutes before drinking. Add honey or sugar, if desired.

Peach and vanilla infusion: side effects and contraindications

To avoid unwanted effects it is necessary to respect the recommended doses and not exceed the consumption of the infusion for too long periods. Excessive intake can cause digestive disorderssuch as diarrhea, flatulence, nausea, as well as symptoms of headache. It is recommended to check all the ingredients of the infusion for those suffering from food allergies, given that some fruits including peach can cause itching and swelling of the mouth. Caution advised for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

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