Want to stay well this winter? Thai healing traditions promote staying in sync with the seasons by cooking with seasonal ingredients and "eating to balance the four basic elements of life; earth, water, wind and fire," says Vegetarian Times Magazine. "Winter is dominated by the earth element, so foods that heal right now include "earth" items: buttery root vegetables and warming root seasonings, such as onion, ginger and garlic. Citrus and greens enhance benefits by helping prevent respiratory illnesses." This spicy Ginger Tea is from the January 2010 Vegetarian Times. Ginger is a warming rootstalk with multiple health benefits such as soothing and aiding the digestive system, having anti-inflammatory properties, boosting the immune system, improving circulation and calming the mind. Honey stimulates antibody production, soothes the throat and calms coughs. Together it makes for a "Simple Saturday Sipper" that is both preventative and restorative, as well as delicious.
Vegetarian Times says: "Ginger is Mother Nature's protective cloak, shielding us from sickness on winter days. This tea is very spicy--if it tastes too strong, dilute it with more hot water and honey. Traditional advice is not to drink more than 2 cups of ginger tea a day unless you are using it as a treatment for a bad chest cold."
Vegetarian Times January 2010
(Makes 2 Cups)
12 thin slices fresh ginger, pounded with mortar or rolling pin
1 Tbsp honey
Put ginger and 3 cups water in a small saucepan, and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer 20-25 minutes. Strain out ginger slices and discard. Stir in honey, and serve hot. Tea can be reheated if necessary.
Notes/Results: Spicy and good, this is the perfect drink for a cold day or night. It is blanket weather at night here right now and this drink warms from the inside out. I used local ginger and my favorite local honey from Big Island Bees,‘Ohi’a Lehua Blossom. I like the spiciness of the ginger but it can be diluted down easily if you want something milder. A bonus--when cooled down and mixed with club soda and a little lemon, this "tea" makes a wonderful ginger ale drink.
What foods make you feel in balance this season?