Tangy Tea: Dandelion Root & Ginger with Raw Honey
by Chaya @ Pantry Paratus
This is a powerhouse of a tea to perk you up and calm your digestion at the same time! Build your immune system and fight inflammation in the most delicious way—tea!
I had to wrestle my cup back from the 8 year old, but he didn’t save any for me. Between the flavor he enjoys and health benefits he so desperately needs—I couldn’t be upset! Now, if he (or I) had any medical complications or were taking medicine, we’d consult our health professional before making this a part
of our routine. Please do the same, as herbs are strong enough to interact with medications (especially in the case of diabetes and hormonal medications).
What the Ginger is Doing For You
The anti-inflammatory compound found within ginger is so notable, it’s even named after it—“gingerol”—that is often suggested by physicians (such as these naturopathic oncologists) to those suffering from
Ginger has another fascinating quality that leads to sweating out bacteria! This is one of those weird-cool factoids that you can use to your advantage: Dermcidin is produced in your sweat glands and its job is to push out bacteria, fungus (including Candida Albicans) and many other illness-inducing attackers. While your sweat glands produce Dermcidin, you can find it as a natural component in ginger! This means that it’s a purifier and probably the most natural way to detoxify your system. This detoxification property is what gives ginger tea a “warming” sensation.
Everyone knows the whole ginger-for-upset-tummy factor. I passionately hated ginger until morning sickness overwhelmed me. I would carry around a bottle of the essential oil to waft under my nose every time a smell overcame me; I’ve enjoyed it ever since.
Best known for its anti-nausea properties, doctors encourage patients to take ginger after
surgery, after chemotherapy, for motion sickness, and other digestive problems. Just remember that there is a limit on how much of a good thing is good. There can be contraindications for overdoing it.
What the Dandelion Root is Doing For You
Dandelion Root is easily found in your health food store, but believe it or not, I actually dig my own up! Some people see them as weeds, I see them as an extension of my herb garden.
All over the yard.
To the chagrin of my neighbors.
Dandelion Root runs about $20 a pound, but you only need a few ounces so you can choose which source (purchasing it or digging up your own roots) works best for you. I figure that I’m lowering my overall population, give the impression to my neighbors I actually care, and nourishing my family at the same
Everything about the dandelion is medicinal; and if you’re a geek like myself, you’ll find it interesting that the real name for dandelion is Taraxacum officinale…”Disorder” and “Remedy” in Greek. The flowers are very high in vitamins; the dandelion greens are too, but you have to harvest early in the season or they are way too bitter.
Several Native American tribes called it the “Spice Flower” because of its use to flavor drinks, and there are several coffee substitutes on the market made from it.
Along with delivering vitamins A, B, C, and D, you’ll get a healthy dose of iron, potassium, and zinc, too. Like ginger, dandelion root is anti-inflammatory and also alleviates many digestive problems, including gall bladder and liver trouble.
Herbalists use the root to detoxify both the liver and gall bladder, and for overall improvement of the immune system. It is used to alleviate water retention (it’s a diuretic) and works as a laxative if your quantity is large enough of it, so please be modest. Don’t make a whole pitcher of this as iced tea for hot summer days, or anything!
What the Cloves are doing for you
We’re carrying on the anti-inflammatory trend by adding some cloves, which are also excellent to help with digestion, among other things!
What the Cinnamon Stick is doing for you
Not all cinnamon is created equal; in fact, not all cinnamon is even cinnamon! Ceylon cinnamon (“true cinnamon”) is my favorite, although all cinnamon will give you some of that great anti-inflammatory assistance you obviously need, if you’re still reading this far into the blog! You’re also getting
some more anti-oxidants to help, which is probably why it’s also shown to protect against cancer. Bacterial and viral infections both hate cinnamon—so if you’re having digestive problems, this addition to the tea just might be the final one-two punch that you need to deliver to whatever is ailing you!
Cinnamon sticks are just comforting to me, anyway. It feels elegant and indulgent in some ways to me, and reminds me of holidays, too. I let them dry out and re-use them numerous times, so I find that they’re quite cost effective for me in the end when I’m getting them from Pantry Paratus in bulk.
What the Honey is doing For You
Always add honey.
Just do. Antibacterial, antimicrobial, anti-fungal, and perhaps nature’s most perfect food, honey also evens out the slightly bitter tone to this healing tea and, depending on how heavy your hand, will make it perfectly sweet.
What about the flavor?
I wondered when you’d ask. Well, I’m biased. So I asked my 8 year old to take a sip. He downed it. “I like it!” But then again, my kids are really quite used to herbal tea. And if yours aren’t, you can typically get them there going the Bubble Tea route!
The amounts given in this recipe make a fairly light tea. If you want to drink more in volume than a traditional teacup (going for the “Go-Big-or-Go-Home” morning coffee cup), then you will want to double it.
Dandelion Root & Ginger Tea with Honey
- 1 “stick” dried dandelion root, dehydrated & broken (approx. 1 tsp)
- 1 oz dried ginger or ½ oz fresh ginger
- 3 whole cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 Tbs Raw Honey
Steep in boiling water for up to 2 minutes; remove your tea ball, but keep the cinnamon stick in there if you’re feeling fancy!
Chaya and her husband own Pantry Paratus, the kitchen self-sufficiency store for food production, preservation, and preparation. Check out their blog and store, and sign up for their newsletter while you’re visiting so that you’ll get in on her great how-to classes!