Fresh Ginger Tea With Lemon and Honey

23 Sep

ginger_tea_iconI’m still not sure what the disease I dealt with this weekend was. I felt run down, with a minor sore throat and a bit of a fever at a couple points (100.4ºF/38ºC was the highest spike), and had aches that corresponded to the spikes in temperature. But altogether it wasn’t that bad. During breaks of my impromptu Disney Movie Netflix Marathon, I had enough energy to get up to make myself food and keep the kitchen in reasonable order.

But this experience made me realize how over-sensitized we paleo people can get to sickness when we’re not getting sick all the time. My new standard is one, maybe two, colds a year, with symptoms on the medium-to-low range of things. I still want to rest and take care of myself, of course, but if something serious in my real life came up, I would still be able to pull myself together and deal with it. So when something comes along that gives me the first fever that I’ve had in three years, part of me couldn’t help but panic and think I was dying.

It’s basically the paleo version of “The Man Cold”:

During the worst part of it, I was texting my friends to say I was dying of brain amoebas, which I must have contracted while we were swimming in a river the week prior, and if I died Kara could have my Le Creuset pots but for the love of god don’t use metal utensils or wire scrubbing pads in them. They all told me I was fine and I should just STFU and watch more cartoons. I was like, “Okay 😦” and figured if I was dying I might as well watch Treasure Planet cause there wasn’t anything else left in my Netflix Disney queue that I hadn’t seen yet (and was shocked to discover that it’s actually really good, I don’t know why it’s gotten a bad rap over the years, it’s totally worth even a non-deathbed viewing).

AAAAAAANYWAY. The point I am leading to is that this weekend was an excuse to practice some of my sick-care routines earlier than normal. One of my favorite home remedies is fresh ginger tea with lemon and honey. It’s fabulous for sore throats and headaches. I also make it as a delightfully warming, caffeine-free drink even when I’m not sick. I post it as a “recipe” but it’s so simple it’s barely a recipe; more a basic protocol that you can adapt to your own liking.

ginger_tea

INGREDIENTS AND MATERIALS:

  • French coffee press (Mine is about 17 oz so the proportions I give below are what I like to use for that size, but adjust to your liking as needed)
  • Fresh lemon (I use about 1/2)
  • Fresh ginger (I use about 2 inches)
  • Honey or preferred sweetener to taste

Step 1: Grate the ginger and put it in the press. As I discussed in the gingerade gummies, I like grating ginger with a cheese grater to open up more surface area for steeping, but finely dicing will work too.

Step 2: Zest the lemon peel into the press (optional), then slice the lemon thinly and put into the press.

Step 3: Fill press with freshly boiled water, cover, and let steep for about 5 minutes.

Step 4: Press the plunger down to filter the tea then pour into mugs. Sweeten to taste, or drink as-is.

That’s it. It’s so simple I even make it at work in our tiny office kitchen. This basic recipe can also be jazzed up in interesting ways. Lately I’ve taken to making it “chai” by adding a couple whole cloves, a cardamom pod, and a few dashes of cinnamon. You can also toss in a bag of black or green tea to make it a real ginger tea. As I suggested with the ginger gummies, you can also play around with different citrus. This weekend I kind of got into grapefruit in a big way. You can also take it to the next level by adding in some turmeric and black pepper to really help fight inflammation (FYI: In my experience, though, ground turmeric is small enough to sift through the filter and can leave a sludge in my mug that I dislike. I sometimes grate fresh turmeric when I can find it and it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg).

Stay tuned for more home remedy recipes as fall progresses. Wishing everyone good health as we all (or at least, us in the Northern Hemisphere) approach the Sickness Season!

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