Pennywort: A Sage's Beverage (Gotu Kola)
As an herbalist, I am not a doctor and do not intend the following as any way to treat or diagnose any disease or sickness.
This week, I had the pleasure of embarking on an herb journey with my great friend, @flowerboyrob. Read along for his account on the lovely pennywort.
Let me tell you a story when I fell in love with two things in Saigon — pennywort juice and…my cousin. Just kidding, Minh (the cute guy who drove me around a romantic city and bought me literally 10 different drinks a day. How can you not fall in love on the back of his motorbike?). Out of those ten drinks, pennywort juice kicks wheat grass shots and American pressed juices to the curb due to the affordability paired with the impact it will have on your sweet little bod. Wondering why? Let’s dive in, boo.
Pennywort , or rau ma in the Vietnamese tongue, is an ancient herb that resembles little lily pads or the body of a frog. The miracle herb dates back to many ayurvedic practices as they were processed as tools for overall mental health. These mediation aids help to heal the crown chakra by balancing out both hemispheres of the brain. As a flowering and medicinal weed, Mandukaparni (en Sanskrit) grows in wetlands of most of Southeast Asia. If you plan to grow pennywort, keep the seedlings in a warm environment with plenty of hydration. Pennywort can be found annually and don’t be afraid to eat both the leaf, stem, and root! You can find these herbs in bag bundles at Vietnamese supermarkets for about $2 or the actual juice at Vietnamese sandwich shops and restaurants for around $3 a cup.
Ask any sage or tai chi master about this drank and they will tell you it’s an elixir for the body, particularly for memory and vitality (winky face). Momma says (and from personal experience) it’s a blood purifier, liver detoxifier, and cools down the body when there is too much inflammation (CC – acne breakouts). This cutie of an herb blooms in plenty of B vitamins (1,3, and 6), so expect lots of energy production and regulation of the nervous system.
Start cleansing and rinsing, gurrrr! Wash, blend, and seep the green mush that is the aftermath. Get creative and sub for coconut water and honey to balance with a sweeter taste because this will definitely taste very green. Pour this baby over ice and enjoy after a long night of partying, hot yoga shenags, or when you need a skincare SOS.
eat your flowers and weeds & xo,
rob / @flowerboyrob