This family-friendly tea will help sooth and ward off illness during cold and flu season
I'm mixing up my go-to winter herbal tea this year. For ages I was devoted to what my mother called "hot lemonade" —lemon and honey in hot water. But these days I'm trying to consume less sugars (even natural ones like honey) outside of when I really value the sugar (like in chocolate, or baked goods. 😉😇) Plus, I often find the taste of honey cloyingly sweet. Not often something I want in my drink. But, I love to keep a warm beverage going throughout the day. It feels better to my body than a cold glass of water, end ensures I get the hydration I need in the driest months. Enter ginger-orange tea. I honestly fell in love with it one Friday night when I spiked it with whiskey in a nod to a Hot Toddy. But after that first cup with "sauce", I kept refilling with just my hot water and was hooked.
Orange is a wonderful alternative to lemon, as its natural sweetness means no additional sweetener is needed. I like Navel or blood oranges for my tea, but you can try it with any orange you like. Not a fan of ginger? Don't worry. Because the ginger isn't crushed, the flavor is quite mild. Even my kids love this tea. Packed with vitamin C and tummy-soothing ginger, this tea is a hit throughout the winter.
Here's how I make this truly simple and delicious drink:
- 2 wedges of fresh Navel or blood orange
- 2-4 slices of fresh ginger (no need to peel it, just make sure the ginger is clean)
- Optional: for more flavor add extra aromatics—cinnamon, star anise, thyme and rosemary would all be great additions.
- Squeeze the orange wedges into a cup, add ginger and any aromatics.
- Fill cup with hot water. Multiple cups of hot water will still result in a tea with nice flavor. I find that the ginger can go all day for me. I eat and then replace the orange after about 3 cups of tea.
- Waste reducing tip: save your peels in a jar with vinegar to make your own countertop cleaner.
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