Superfood Spotlight: Ginger Root
What You Should Know: Ginger is a perfect example of Hippocrates’ urging that we make food our medicine. Considered a medicinal food in Chinese and Indian cultures for centuries, ginger has a million delicious culinary uses. The versatile root can be sliced or grated fresh into stir-fried dishes and soups, juiced to pack a punch in smoothies and juices or added dry to baked goods and marinades.
Why You Should Try It: Ginger’s popularity in so many foods and recipes is partly due to it’s soothing and anti-inflammatory properties. Ginger is famously soothing for the an upset stomach and can reduce inflammation throughout the body, so much so that many experts now recommend ginger for staving off brain disease. Anti-inflammatory foods like ginger are important to keep in your diet for glowing skin, great circulation and to reduce aches and pains related to inflammation in the joints and tissues. One teaspoon of dried ginger also has as high an antioxidant level as a cup full of fresh spinach.
Let’s Get Together: Fresh or ground ginger provides the perfect base for a great homemade chai tea. Whip up a warming pot to delight Halloween party go-ers in the evening and warm the next day for any tiny tummies that may have indulged in one too many fun-sized treats.
Anti-Inflammatory Ginger Spice Chai
3-4 cardamom pods
1 cinnamon stick
3-4 whole cloves
1 inch slice of fresh ginger root, sliced
2-3 dates, chopped
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3 cups water
1 cup almond milk
2 heaping tablespoons of loose leaf black tea
honey (optional for more sweetness)
Lightly crush cardamon pods, cinnamon and cloves in a mortar and pestle.
Pour filtered water in a pot and add crushed cardamon, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, dates and black pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil, then simmer for 4 minutes.
Remove from heat and let the spices infuse their flavor for another 4-5 minutes.
Add the almond milk to the pan and bring back to a boil. Remove from heat and add the tea. Cover the pot, remove from heat and let it steep for 4-5 minutes.
Use a fine sieve and strain tea into a teapot or directly into serving cups. Add honey for sweeter tasting tea.