Turmeric in the Tamil language is called Manjal, which when directly translated means yellow. Obviously the name came from the colour of the spice. Not only was Turmeric or Manjal a commonly used ingredient in almost all our south Indian preparations , it is also often used as a home remedy.
When we were little and hurt ourselves when playing,and there was blood involved, the wounds were washed and dressed with a mix of crushed small shallots and turmeric.Women applied turmeric paste on their faces to protect the skin from acnes and other skin blemishes. The most common medicinal use however, is for common cold and cough.
Whenever we got the sniffles or scratchy throat, during the monsoon season in India, my mum always made manjal paal aka turmeric pepper milk for us to drink . Although I did not appreciate it much during childhood, I appreciate it a lot now as I find it very smoothing with its amazing healing properties for cold , sore throat and cough during Winter here.
Since Winter is the season where these ailments are largely rampant in most homes, I thought I will share this simple but very effective time tested Winter remedy with my readers here today.
Ingredients to serve 1
Milk : 1 cup
Turmeric :1/2 tsp
Black Pepper: 1/4 tsp
raw sugar/honey or palm jaggery to taste.
In a small saucepan, take milk.Heat on medium heat uncovered, until almost boiling.Add in turmeric and black pepper. Stir well.Reduce heat and and let it simmer for five minutes. When the spices have blended evenly with the milk , remove from flame.Add raw sugar/honey or palm jaggery to taste. Serve warm.
Turmeric milk also aids with getting a goodnight’s sleep at night.
Growing up in a home dominated by staunch coffee drinkers, I cannot remember where my love for a good cup of tea came from.I did not fancy the karupatti kappa that was offered at evening snack time , so skipped drinking coffee altogether.J is not a coffee or tea drinker either and so I did not have the need to make ritualistic early morning coffee in our home.
It was in Pondichery that I was introduced to masala chai along with a spicy plate of kothu parrota .Still there was never the ritualistic tea making in our home until we came to NZ!
A couple of years back,when we were in India ,my aunt introduced me to Red Label Nature Care tea and it turned out to be my go to drink during the really cold first winter in Christchurch. My comfort drink for homesickness and warmth !
When I had finished the tea stash I brought with me from India,my search for Nature Care Tea all over Christchurch came to nothing. I was relieved I found the Red Label tea here. I just add ginger or cardamon and I’m good to go!
Since I have grown to love my cup of chai so much I thought I will share it on the blog for my readers (if any!) to make at home as its pretty easy and quick.
Ingredients to serve 2
Water : 1 1/2 cup
Milk : 1/2 cup
Fresh Ginger : 2″ piece
Tea Powder :2.5 tsps
Sugar as per taste
Crush the ginger. Add it to the water in a saucepan and allow to boil till you can smell the aroma of the ginger come through.Add the tea powder and allow to simmer for a couple of minutes. Add in the milk .Switch off the flame. Let it sit for a minute. Strain into a cup with a tea strainer.Add sugar as required. Serve piping hot!
Cook Book Scribbles
- A good cup of ginger chai goes well with a hot plate of pakoras or bhajis.
- Any loose tea dust can be used to make this tea.