Winter Warmers - Fresh Ginger Tea

Why go out and by tea bags when you can make yourself a piping hot cup of freshly brewed ginger tea that's good for your digestion and your immune system.

4-6 thin slices raw ginger 1.5 - 2 cups water Juice of 1/2 lemon or lime 1-2 tsp honey, or to taste

Peel the ginger and slice thinly.  Boil the ginger in water for at least 10 minutes.  For a tea with more 'zing', allow to steep for longer, or use more slices of ginger. 

Remove from heat and add lime or lemon juice, and honey to taste.

Why Ginger for winter?

Ginger (Zingiber officinale), a perennial herb native to China and India, is one of the world's favourite natural medicines and cooking ingredients. During the cold winter months, adding a bit of ginger to your diet is a flavourful way to boost your immune system, help a cold or flu run its course, improve blood circulation, and aid digestion. In traditional Asian medicine, the rhizome of the ginger plant is considered to have warming attributes, which makes it an excellent multi-purpose herbal remedy for the colder months. 

Conventional Western medicine is also beginning to better understand the various uses of ginger, particularly as an anti-inflammatory and aid for nausea. Although ginger is often touted as a remedy for morning sickness and other forms of nausea, pregnant women should use ginger sparingly and only after first consulting their medical professional. Ginger should also be avoided by persons suffering from gallbladder disease. 

Ginger is fairly high in protein and also contains vitamin A, niacin, minerals, and amino acids.  It is available in both fresh and dried forms. Dried ginger tends to be stronger than its fresh counterpart and therefore requires more careful usage. 

When selecting fresh ginger, choose rhizomes with firm, smooth skins that are free of mould and excessive twists and joints. If a rhizome appears wrinkled, it is drying out and may be woody.  To use ginger in cooking, peel and then slice, mince, or julienne.  Fresh ginger is a great addition to hot dishes such as curries and soups but is just as tasty in cold dishes including Asian-style salads and (in its pickled form) as condiment for sushi. Ginger tea induces sweating, which can help fevers run their course.  

~ by Heather Moritz