It's that time of year when the common cold seems to move through the house like wildfire, inflicting nearly every family member with a stuffy nose, a lingering cough, a headache, sleepless nights, etc. I'm knocking on all of the wood around me, as I've not yet come down with it. But should I, this is my go-to tonic for treating a nasty bout of flu, which I read about on Remodelista a few years back when I was stuffed up and desperately seeking a natural cure. (I'm no fan of drugstore cold medicines.) This tasty brew contains lemongrass, ginger, honey, chili peppers and tea and packs a flavorful and spicy punch. I'm headed to the store right now to get some fresh lemongrass (since I used it all in last night's batch of Chicken Curry), as Stephan's been under the weather all week.
- Quart of water
- Fresh ginger root (peeled and sliced thin). The more the better (about 1/4 cup or a good-sized chunk before slicing)
- 2 lemongrass stalks (stem and tip cut off and outside first layer removed), sliced in half lengthwise and then cut in 3-inch long pieces.
- 1 small red chili pepper, sliced very thin
1 small green serrano chili pepper, sliced very thin
1 good shake of crushed red pepper flakes
Honey to taste and to balance the heat from the chili
2 tea bags of preferably lemongrass tea, but any black tea will do as well
- Bring a quart of water to a boil in a large saucepan and add all of the above ingredients.
- You can keep this on a low simmer for a long time; just add a bit more water as needed.
- Drink as desired throughout the day.