GINGER

Written by Asia Suler

 

Earthy, citrusy, spicy … The flavor of ginger can be hard to describe. Cultivation of ginger root can be traced back to some of the earliest Chinese and Indian medical texts and to this day, it is still one of the most prescribed herbs by Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners.

Ginger is unparalleled in its ability to combat colds, ease upset stomachs, and reduce bloating. This fiery root can be used for nausea, morning and motion sickness, high blood pressure, and arthritis. Due to its warming and stimulating nature, ginger increases circulation, helping to heat cold hands and feet and enhance brain activity. Compresses made from ginger can also alleviate the pain of menstrual cramps and muscle aches. The herb is an excellent detoxifier. Purifying and powerful, it can help flush long-held toxins from our body’s system.

To awaken your body, mind, and spirit from wintertime slump and slumber and reignite the fire in your blood, you can incorporate ginger in your diet. Try adding some fresh or dried ginger to your meals or smoothies. Want something more potent? Knock back a lemon and ginger shot, or take a swig of a cold kicker fire cider (recipe below). Wishing you a happy, healthy, and flavorful New Year!

Lemon-Ginger Shot
Ingredients:
Juice of 1 lemon
2-3” chunk of ginger
Juice all the ingredients. Pour into your favorite shot glass. Sip slowly or knock it back in one go for a blast of invigoration.

Cold-Kicker Fire Cider
Experiencing the first signs of a cold? Take a swig of some homemade fire cider and feel your symptoms melt away…
Mix:
1 quart apple cider vinegar
½ cup fresh ginger root, chopped
½ cup fresh horseradish root, chopped
½ cup onion, chopped
1/8- ¼ cup fresh garlic, chopped
1 tsp cayenne
Optional: honey
Cover ingredients with apple cider vinegar and allow your mixture to sit for at least 2 weeks before straining and imbibing.
Fire cider is also delicious to use in salad dressings or on cooked greens. When you are done with your first infusion, keep the original herbal mixture and continue to add more ingredients and vinegar for a continual supply of fire cider. Experiment with other medicinal herbs or roots in your cider to find your own perfect elixir.

Ginger Detox Drink
Ingredients:
1 oz chopped ginger
8 oz water
Juice of ½-1 lemon
Honey or maple syrup to taste.
Directions: Add ginger to water and bring to a boil. Let root boil in water for at least 10 minutes. Turn off heat, cover, and let steep for and additional 10-20 minutes. Strain and add: lemon juice and honey or maple syrup to taste.
Optional: ½ tsp turmeric, ¼ tsp cayenne and a pinch of black pepper

Enjoy!