Poppy Tea is an opiate-containing beverage made by boiling ground up poppy heads in water. Alcohol may also be used to make a "tincture" that is much stronger than opium tea; I, however, have no experience making this version of the drink.

The legality of poppy tea is mind-bending, as you can purchase dried poppy heads (or pods) in many flower shops across the United States. Illicit opium is illegal in all its forms. However, many people (garden and craft enthusiasts, mostly) are fond of opium-containing poppies. Poppies are used in flower arrangements, grown in gardens for their luscious beauty, and used in all kinds of craft decorations, as the dried heads of poppies are beautiful and go well with many wreath designs and dried floral arrangements.

If you plan on making poppy tea, heed this word: What you are doing is illegal, and if you are caught you may face serious judicial consequences. Having said that, here is my recipe for Poppy Tea:

Once you have your poppy heads, dry or fresh, proceed to crush them up or put them in a blender for a few seconds. The smaller the pieces, the easier it will be for the opium to be released into the water.

Now, poppy heads vary in size, and strength, so the type of poppies you have may require a variation of this formula, but you will be satisfied with the results if you use about 2 cups of water for every 5 poppy heads you crush up. This can make either one or two servings, depending on how much opium you are planning to ingest.

Add the crushed up poppy heads to boiling water and IMMEDIATELY remove from heat. Too much heat may destroy some of the opium and result in a low-quality finished product. Stir the mixture around occasionally for about five minutes. By then, the water should have extracted a significant amount of opium.

Strain the mixture(save the ground up poppies, as you may re-use them with about half as much water for another round of tea) and drink up!

Like I said, two cups could be one or two servings, depending on how much opium you want, so I would suggest starting out with one cup and finding out how much tea is best for you.

Important - Do not drink alcohol while you are under the influence of this tea... alcohol and opiates can be a deadly combination, see: respiratory depression.

While cooking the tea, lemon juice may be used. It is said by some to help release the opium, but I have never used it, and it is not required to have a good glass of tea.

The tea will be the most disgusting drink you've ever had, but it will certainly live up to the opium poppy's ancient Sumerian name "Hul Gil" meaning "plant of joy".

I strongly recommend researching the opium poppy and its many constituents before experimenting with poppy tea. Remember, knowledge is power.

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