The Ginger Bomb

Who knew cola could be a medicinal drink? When I had the sniffles or a sore throat as a child, I was given a hot drink of cola, boiled with ginger and lemon.  And, by gosh, after drinking this delicious concoction I seemed to feel better.  Once in a while, I order this drink, which is still served at Hong Kong style cafes, and let it transport me back to my childhood.

Now, instead of hot cola, my husband and I make a hot drink with ginger when we feel under the weather.  “Shall I make you the concoction?” offered by my wonderful husband is music to my ears when my nose is runny and my chest is congested.  After a cup or two of this drink, the congestion loosens up and I am able to expel the, ahem..mucous.  Since this drink does such a good job of chasing away those nasty symptoms I am calling it the Ginger Bomb!

Ginger Drink 2 Kake2kale

Ginger is a rock star in the superfood realm, it might not look very pretty with its knobby physique, but it is packed with medicinal and therapeautic properties.  You may think of it as a root, but in fact is the subterranean stem of the plant, called a rhizome, from which roots and shoots extend from.  It has been used in China for thousands of years, and spread to many other cultures via the Silk Road.

It is full of antioxidants like zingerones and gingerols, as well as having antibacterial, antiviral, anti-parasitic, and antiseptic properties.  Ginger may also be just as effective as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in helping with pain relief.  Studies have found a significant decrease in pain from muscle soreness in women athletes, and a reduction in migraine headaches and even in menstrual cramps.  It is also well known to be effective in reducing nausea and upset stomachs.  It is also great for coughs because it helps drain the lungs of mucuous, which is why it is in our concoction!

Ginger is usually sold in pretty large chunks, so when I can’t use it up fast enough, I put it in the freezer, and just grate what I need.

Naturally, you can enjoy my Ginger Bomb concoction even if you don’t have a cold or the sniffles!  It’s a cozy and healthy drink anytime of year.

Other Superfoods in the recipe:
Pineapple – Contains Vitamin C, bromelain which is a digestive enzyme.
Lemon – Contains Vitamin C and lots of phytochemicals.
Honey – May help in treating seasonal allergies if you take a daily dose of honey made from your local area.  It fights infections, in particular manuka honey, which is made from the tea tree plant.

Ginger Drink Kake2kale

The Ginger Bomb serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cup water
  • 5 slices ginger*
  • 1 cup pineapple juice
  • 2 T. honey
  • 2 T. lemon juice

Directions:

  • Put ginger slices into a pot of water and bring to a boil for 10 minutes.
  • Add pineapple juice and heat through for about 2 minutes.
  • Then add honey and lemon juice. Serve immediately while hot.

*You may save the ginger slices to be used for another bomb.

Eat well and stay healthy!  {Kake}

From the Culinary Trail – Grilled Romaine Lettuce on the Sunshine Coast

I love the summertime in Vancouver!  There is a plethora of outdoor pursuits to enjoy and wonderful spots to enjoy them – such as Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands and top of my list is the beautiful Sunshine Coast.  Just a 40-minute ferry ride from Vancouver, this idyllic coastline is dotted with quaint villages, cottages and resorts. Welcome Beach in Halfmoon Bay is likely the best kept secret along the coast. It is a terrific spot to rent a beachfront cottage, which is what I did recently.  While at the cottage, I made one of my favourite summer BBQ items – Grilled Romaine Lettuce.  Most people eat romaine raw in a salad, but grilling it gives it a twist and is surprisingly not that common.  And, in case you weren’t aware, romaine lettuce’s nutritional value is one of the highest in the lettuce family.

sunshine coast Kake2Kale

Romaine lettuce (also referred to as cos lettuce) is a heart-healthy green.  It is considered to have more vitamin C than an orange.   It is an excellent source of vitamin A, K, and a variety of Bs (1, 2, 3, 5, 6 and 9).   Romaine lettuce is also a source of iron; but has other minerals such as potassium, manganese and copper.  It contains omega-3, calcium and fiber while being low in calories and low on the Glycemic index.    With so many health benefits, romaine lettuce easily made it onto our list of favourite superfoods.

Grilled Romaine Lettuce – one lettuce head per person, as an appetizer or as an accompaniment

Directions: Cut the lettuce head in half, length-wise.  After rinsing it, drizzle or brush inside and outside with an oil of your choice.  I like olive or rice bran oil. Then, season with salt and pepper.  Grill the inside cut area first until charred but not wilted.  Flip to grill other side.  I often dress the grilled lettuce with shaved Parmesan cheese and baked porchetta bits, but I also like making a blue cheese butter sauce (by melting the two ingredients together). And, it is also fine without a dressing.

Happy summer grilling! – {Kale}

romaine lettuce Kake2Kale