Recipe : Tea to cool the heat & Chinese herbalists

My church friend gave me a packet of this dried flowers with chrysanthemum and kum choe (liquourice bark). I did not catch the Chinese name of it but managed to Google out what it is:

Honeysuckle flower (Jinyinhua)

Pharmaceutical Name: Flos Lonicerae

Botanical Name : 1. Lonicera japonica Thunb. L.; 2. Lonicera hypoglauca Miq.; 3. Lonicera confusa DC.; 4. Lonicera dsystyla Rehd.

Common Name : Honeysuckle flower, Lonicera flower

Source of Earliest Record: Mingyi Bielu

Part Used & Method for Pharmaceutical Preparations: The flower buds are gathered in the beginning of summer and dried in the shade.

Properties & Taste: Sweet and cold

Meridians : Lung, stomach and large intestine

• Detoxicate; Clears away toxic substances.
• Kills or inhibits the action of germs.
• Cools and reduces fever and heat.
• Reduces ulcers, swell, sore throat, skin infection.
• Clears the lungs and strengthens general health.

Functions : To clear heat and release toxins (source from Herbal Shop)

I had used chrysanthemum with licorice all the while but this honeysuckle is new to me. My church friend told me that during the SARS outbreak, the honeysuckle flower was in great demand and sold out. It is rather cheap, at RM1 for a large packet. She gave to me for my family to ‘cool’ down due to the current hazy season and also unpredictable weather which cause my children and I to cough. (Yeap, see a doctor first, this Chinese herbs is just complementary)

I added some rock sugar and boil the bunch of flowers and barks in a pot of water over slow fire. Nice drink! So, the next time you go to your favourite herbalist, ask for Jinyinhua to be added to your chrysanthemum.

There is an extensive write up here about prevention of the flu using Chinese herbs. But still, see a doctor first if you are sick and enjoy sipping the tea just for that extra pick-me-up. And do not allow your sick little babies and children to be treated with Chinese herbs because their health are fragile. I know of one Chinese sinseh who gives out a standard powder for children with any kind of ailments and parents love it because the medicine put the children to sleep! Scary, man!

Post Author: Lilian

Food, travel, recipes. Chinese Malaysian, blogger, photographer and writer.

8 thoughts on “Recipe : Tea to cool the heat & Chinese herbalists


    (August 7, 2006 - 7:31 pm)

    Don’t eat too much fresh Honeysuckle flower otherwise you will get diarrhea. However, those toxin neurtralise after the drying process.


    (August 8, 2006 - 9:37 am)

    i usually boil this once in a while, the honeysuckle is supposed to be cleansing one wor


    (August 8, 2006 - 12:34 pm)

    babe – It gives a nice fragrance to the tea too. I like it.

    moo_t – You seems to know everything!

    Erina Law

    (August 8, 2006 - 1:18 pm)

    This honeysuckle is good. Of course, everything we consume it should have a limit. Still remember during the sars time, the price shoot up so high. Many purchase them to boil and drink. But, I were also advice by the ‘sinshe’ (chinese doctor) that the liquourice bark and honeysucker can be boil and used to shower – for kids that had got rashes due to heatiness. I did that and it work for my 2 kids last time. What I do were boil them the night before and keep till the next day. When, I wanted to used it the next day I will just heat up and add with some cold water. It also help to take away the heat in our body. Chinese herbs are beautiful and too sad not many of us know and appreciate it – some think it’s so old fashion (‘lau’ e-ah’), messy and too much work.


    (August 9, 2006 - 7:21 am)


    I’m a new reader – and I’ve been devouring your blog entries since Ive discovered them :p. Thanks for sharing so much – your blog is esp great for me coz I’m in Aust at the mo’ and miss Msia so much :p



    (August 20, 2006 - 9:48 pm)

    Please take note that one with G6PD Deficiency should avoid taking Honeysuckle.

    For more information, please go to


    (August 21, 2006 - 12:10 am)

    Pauline – Thanks alot for that info. I have posted a warning to all the mothers in my parenting forum. We have a thread on G6PD.

    Ling – Tks!


    (November 10, 2006 - 3:25 am)

    ah, my mum and grandma (both whom are cantonese) call this kum ngan fa (jinyinhua in canton i guess).

    i am mildly phobic of this drink from the enormous amounts i was made to consume during the SARS scare – i’ve mild respiratory problems and i guess mum was going by the rather safe than sorry adage.

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