I am a great believer in making things from scratch by one’s self. That way, you know what exactly is in it ergo what you are putting into your body by way of ingestion or absorption (through the skin) You can also then easily adapt things to your taste. I will post some of the things that I make under the category Make It Yourself.
I made some Ginger tea today. I wanted a hot drink and needed something with a bit of a kick, not my usual fruit tea.
These are the ingredients I used:
- Hot Water
- Ginger (chopped)
- Lemon juice (squeezed from a lemon, not from a bottle – this is from scratch remember?)
- Maple Syrup or Honey to sweeten
For utensils I used a
- Chopping Board
- Juicer (the cheap manual type).
- A jug
There are several ways of making Ginger Tea but today because I just wanted a quick drink, I did it the quick and easy way.
Here are the steps I followed:
- Peel and chop up your ginger. The alternative way (which would have taken me just a bit more time, not significantly more) would have been to grate the ginger. This is an even better method as the more surface area of ginger that is exposed to the water, the more potent your ginger drink will be.
- Put the ginger, whatever form you decide –grated or just chopped up, into your jug and pour hot water over it. Let that sit for a while. I usually keep it that way for a few minutes until the water has cooled enough to drink. You can also steep your ginger in a proper teapot which will keep the water hot for a long time and thus increase your immersion time. I wanted something in a hurry so I used a glass jug. The longer you immerse your ginger in the water, the more the ginger flavor and goodness it will impart.
- When you are done steeping your ginger, sieve if you used grated ginger or just decant if you chopped it up. Pour the resulting tea out into cups and then add the lemon and maple syrup/honey to individual taste.
It is not advisable to pour your lemon juice into hot water as that will result in a loss of nutrients/enzymes. That is the reason why I put in the Lemon juice after the Ginger tea had cooled down significantly.
What I typically do is to make this to taste. Not everyone likes the taste of lemon or even honey/maple syrup so I do not put it in the jug with the ginger tea. I instead pour the ginger tea into mugs and have the maple Syrup and lemon juice available so that my fellow tea drinkers can adjust to their individual taste. Me, I like plenty of lemon and just a little maple syrup.
A quick look at the benefits of this tea. Ginger contains potassium, magnesium, copper, manganese and Vitamin B6. It has anti-inflammatory effects which are useful for those that have rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis. These people actually have reduced pain levels and an increase in mobility if they regularly consume ginger. Isn’t that amazing? Ginger also boosts immunity against colds. It also helps with nausea and vomiting. Do I spy some pregnant women running to the kitchen to make some Ginger tea?
Lemon contains a lot of Vitamin C which not only neutralizes free radicals in the body, it also boosts the immune system. I got my lemon at ShopRite. I can’t remember how much they cost now, but a tip for choosing them will be to choose those with thin skins as opposed to thick skins. That way you get more juice for your Naira.
I use Maple Syrup and Honey interchangeably. Maple syrup is all natural – it is actually made from the sap of a maple tree. 1tsp of Maple Syrup contains fewer calories and a higher concentration of minerals than a teaspoon of Honey. Unfortunately, I have not been able to find a shop that sells Maple syrup in Nigeria. If anyone knows where it is sold, please let me know. I could use the baggage space it will free up for a dress or something 🙂
So there you have it, cheap and easy to make plus full of vitamins and minerals. You can serve this to your children and even swap out packed juices in their lunch bags with this tea twice a week or so. Children tend to share germs really easily and usually if one child comes down with a cold, which is contagious, others pick it up really easily. It will be good to know that your child has all that extra vitamin C coursing through their little bodies and strengthening their immune system.
Due to the fact that you can serve this tea hot or cold, it can be served any time of the day. I like it best in the morning.