We've always been interested in finding natural solutions when we are feeling bad. Some packaged cold remedies make us feel like total poop, which is no good if we have to go into the office. Here are a few of our home hot drinks that help us beat both the chills and the sniffles:
Honey Lemon Tea In a glass teapot in the microwave, boil 4 cups of water, juice of ½ a small lemon (preferably a Meyer lemon), and 3 tablespoons of raw, unfiltered honey. Add your favorite teabags (2 should do it; green tea is a favorite), and drink while still hot. Steam your face in between sips if you have nasty congestion. Variation: Brew Bigelow Constant Comment tea with a little honey. Slice an orange, add a couple of rings to your cup, and top with hot tea. Mmmmm.
Chili Ginger Tea Boil 4 cups of water in a glass teapot in the microwave with 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper (or cayenne), and a teaspoon of peeled ginger (quartered). Add 2 teabags and honey to taste. This one is a tummy soother (ginger is good for digestion), and the peppers and honey help soothe a sore throat.
Spiced Apple Cider Traditionally, you would get real apple cider (you know, the fresh stuff in the refrigerated section) for this recipe, but regular apple juice works all right here. There are many variations on spiced/mulled cider, but this is a simplified version. Heat 3 cups apple cider, 3 cinnamon sticks (slightly broken up), 3 cloves, and a few grates of fresh nutmeg in a saucepan on the stove over medium heat. When the cider begins to boil, ladle out and drink hot. If you want to sweeten it up, use a little honey.
Hot Lemonade Ahh, the drink of our youth. It's simple, but Northern mothers (and choir directors) swear by the stuff. A nice shot of Vitamin C and warm soothing sweetness will do the trick in most cases. It's easy: Fill your mug with cold lemonade (Simply Lemonade is our favorite), toss it in the microwave for 2-3 minutes, and sip warm. This is also good with a sprig of mint -- kind of like a warm mojito.
So what are your remedies to beat the weather blues?
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