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Winter Lemonade

Winter Lemonade recipe by SeasonWithSpice.com

It’s the simple combinations that will see you through the cold and flu season -

Chicken noodle soup with nutmeg.  Ginger tea with lemongrass.  Beef stew with clove and bay leaves.  Ginger tonic with a splash of rum.

Or a bottomless glass of Winter Lemonade with honey and cinnamon…

honey, lemon, and cinnamon - ingredients to fight a cold or flu

Served hot like tea, this Winter Lemonade is a combination of three cold soothing elements – lemon, honey, and cinnamon.

Lemon is of course packed with Vitamin C to strengthen your immune system, and along with the high acidity level, lemons will help clear mucus and cleanse the body.

Drinking a straight glass of lemon juice may be too much for your stomach, so mixing in a tablespoon of honey will help balance the flavor and acidity of the lemon.  Honey also provides its own set of cold fighting benefits that go far beyond just soothing a sore throat.  Honey is full of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids, as well as the healthy, natural sugars that give you the much needed energy when you’re feeling so worn out.

You could stop there with the classic mix of lemon and honey, but for a Winter Lemonade, you need a warming element – a warming spice.  Fresh ginger is wonderful if you have it on hand, but if not, choose a warming spice from the cupboard like a couple of star anise pods, or a pinch of cayenne or nutmeg.  Or a cinnamon stick.

Winter Lemonade recipe by SeasonWithSpice.com

The warming properties of cinnamon have been long known in Traditional Chinese Medicine as an effective way to fight feverish colds. This warming effect is from the essential oils in the cinnamon, notably Cinnamaldehyde, which also gives cinnamon its strong aroma and flavor.

Vietnamese cinnamon (Cinnamomum loureiroi) has a high essential oil content of about 5%, giving it a much sweeter, stronger flavor than the cheaper Indonesian cinnamon sticks (Cinnamomum burmannii) that are generally sold in the grocery store.*

So if you are feeling feverish, or just cold for that matter, add a Vietnamese cinnamon stick into your lemon-honey drink for a warming, Winter Lemonade.
buy quality vietnamese cinnamon at season with spice shop

Winter Lemonade by Season with Spice 

Ingredients:
1 Vietnamese cinnamon stick
1 organic lemon
1 tablespoon of honey per glass

Process:
1. Heat a glass of water to the boiling point.
2. Cut the lemon into thin slices. Using the cinnamon stick as a skewer, slide on each lemon slice. Then place it into the glass, crush the lemon slices a bit with a spoon, and allow to steep for 5 minutes.  Then stir in a tablespoon of honey.
3. Once you finish drinking the first glass, and are ready for another, just fill it up with very hot water, let it steep again, and stir in another tablespoon of honey. The essential oils of the lemon and cinnamon will continue to be extracted all day as you refill it with hot water. A bottomless glass of Winter Lemonade to help you feel better.

Notes:
*Ceylon cinnamon – “true cinnamon” – has lower levels of Cinnamaldehyde compared to the three types of cassia (Indonesian cinnamon, Chinese cinnamon, and Vietnamese cinnamon), so for the most warming cup of Winter Lemonade, stick with cassia.

7 comments:

Laura said...

Question: Why do your ginger tea recipes suggest to peel the ginger? I usually wash it, just wondering if there is something important that Im missing. Thanks!

Season with Spice said...

Hi Laura, good question. It really comes down to preference, so you can absolutely leave the skin on. (I actually wrote a little about that in a prior post - http://blog.seasonwithspice.com/2012/07/zucchini-pasta-with-teriyaki-salmon.html).

I was introduced to using fresh ginger while living in Asia, where people generally remove the skin, so I just followed by example. But if I buy organic ginger, I sometimes leave it on for drink/tea recipes.

mjskit said...

Oh I could have used this this afternoon! Well, there's always tomorrow. It's really, really cold here and this warm lemonade sounds wonderful. I've been drinking tea all day and this lemonade sounds like a warm refreshing change.

Season with Spice said...

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Season with Spice said...

If it's above 0 there, then we are definitely colder here;) Enjoy the drink, MJ!

mjskit said...

Oh my! You're below 0??!?? Well, please keep it up there! :) We're actually warmer up this week into the 40's and I'm loving it. Stay warm!

justonecookbook said...

I drink hot honey lemon tea all the time, but I didn't even think to include cinnamon! I bought so many cinnamon sticks (not Vietnamese kind though... I got the huge bag in Indian store) so I'll give it a try!

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