Sunday, December 21, 2008
Spicy Tomato Tea, from Earth Clinic
Our winter festivities have begun. Last night we had a big, fancy communal dinner, which was really lovely. But my throat had started to feel pretty sore and my voice was scratchy, nose runny, eyes watery. Oh oh. I HATE getting sick during these five days or so where we all get together a lot to have fun in various ways.
I started my usual "have a cold" therapy: garlic, goldenseal and echinacea, vitamin C in huge doses, lots of liquids, and all that. Chicken broth, hot baths, lots of rest...
But I also zipped over to Earth Clinic to see what they had listed for "cures" for colds. I had read of this one before, and have used it and recommended it to people, but I hadn't read all the various responses that people have sent in from around the world. First I'll give you the classic recipe, first sent in back in 2003, and then my recipe.
Spicy Tomato Tea
It works fast (in most cases) and tastes great! These ingredients are well-known serious herbals for their medicinal properties... Used together they do wonders for sinus/ear infections, colds, coughing and sore throat. We've even found it to kill flu germs and strep throat (with no antibiotics).
TOMATO TEA RECIPE
2 cups V8 Juice
2-3 cloves Garlic crushed (use more if you can)
2 T Lemon Juice
Hot Sauce (the more the better, so as much as you can handle)
Mix and heat in a pan or in the microwave. Sip slowly and re-warm as needed to get the full effects of the fumes. Let it sit in the back of your throat to bathe it. Suck the fumes through your sinuses and also down into your lungs. Its all natural and healthy, so drink as much of it as you want or need until you are SURE the infection is gone. This is past the time when you "feel better."
This appears to be the best recipe, but from the comments, people often don't have the right ingredients. Don't let that hold you back. Use whatever you have available. Below are some substitutes that may not work as well or as fast, but will still help. I've listed them by their likely effectiveness:
V8 Juice - tomato juice, vegetable juice, canned or fresh tomatoes crushed, tomato soup (if really desperate, try another kind of fruit juice, vegetable soup or even chicken soup . you're aiming for high Vit C content)
Garlic - garlic in olive oil, dehydrated garlic, garlic salt (aiming for the strong anti-bacterial/fungal effects)
Lemon Juice - Fresh lemons, bottled juice, limes, lime juice, oranges, frozen lemonade
Hot Sauce - ANY kind of hot sauce works, fresh hot peppers, cayenne pepper, dried pepper flakes (if really desperate, try horseradish, black pepper or even mustard . you're aiming for the highly anti-bacterial/fungal properties of capricin which is found in hot peppers, and its effectiveness at clearing out the sinuses.)
My Spicy Tomato Tea Recipe
2 cups tomato juice
8 cloves garlic minced (I love garlic anyway and always use it in illness)
1/2 tsp cayenne powder
1 tsp horseradish
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
3 tbsp lemon juice (I used the bottled lemon juice from concentrate as I didn't have lemons)
1 tsp tumeric (anti-inflammatory)
herbs: oregano, parsley, celery salt and seed for flavor
Heat it all up on the stove, ladle it into cup and sip the stuff. My nose has already cleared and I'm feeling better--all in a half an hour. Not bad!
I've gotten myself used to cayenne pepper a bit more. I'm taking the cayenne tincture daily--it's hot but now bearable and I like the effect of it. It opens my nasal passages and makes me feel warm all over.
A Fun Shakespeare Show
I'll share this with you just for fun. I found a neat compilation of phrases and one-liners from Shakespeare's plays and sonnets on the web. You can read it here. If you click on the phrase, it will tell you where the original came from, and where in Shakespeare it is found. I thought we could do an interesting audience participation thing with the phrases.
I printed out the list and got some friends to help me provide some dinner entertainment last night. While everyone was noshing away at the fabulous feast, we put on our Shakespeare hats, jester's hats with the bells on the tips, and we read the lines to the folks. It is really amazing how many of these phrases originated in Shakespeare--"dead as a doornail," "give the devil his due," "pure as the driven snow," etc. If we thought the line familiar enough, we'd read the first part of the line, and wait for the audience to provide the rest. We had a blast! The folks really got into it. If you're ever called upon to provide entertainment for a group, this one is fun!