Reduce Inflammation With Food!
This hot, beautifully golden-hued drink features anti-inflammatory spices in a creamy, frothy format that is ideal to sip on in the morning, savour for an afternoon, or enjoy as a bedtime snack. Turmeric (Latin name: Curcuma longa) has been used as a healing herb for hundreds of years in Ayurvedic medicine and other Asian medicine systems. By present day scientific standards, it has demonstrated potent anti-inflammatory properties. A study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology in 2008 found that curcumin, the prized compound in turmeric, suppresses the IgE mediated allergic response (aka histamine response) and blocks mast cell activation (the cells that secrete histamine).
Turmeric and coconut milk, together at last!
I make this latté in a base of coconut milk, as dairy (cow) is one of the key high-histamine food groups to avoid. Some people may also find nuts are a histamine sensitivity trigger food as well, so rather than almond milk, I find coconut or rice milk are safer (and equally tasty) alternatives. Cinnamon may also be a histamine trigger, so I replace it with cardamom, which is a delicious spice, used in chai and in Indian cuisine. Ginger and black pepper also have anti-inflammatory carminative (relieves flatulence) properties, and lend their wonderful spice to this healing elixir.
I like to store some fresh turmeric and ginger root in a sealed container in the freezer – then when I want to use them, I take them out for a few minutes to thaw a bit before grating with a zester. This way I still get the benefits of that fresh grated flavour and avoid getting sprayed with juice, which in the case of turmeric can be quite staining! I use the fresh roots if I have them on hand or in the freezer, but if not, the powdered ones work well – in fact, if you have someone in your family sensitive to textures, the powdered spices would be best as even in a high powered blender the grated roots don’t get 100% puréed.
- 1 cup coconut milk or rice milk
- 1 tbsp fresh turmeric root, grated (or use 1-2 tsp turmeric paste*)
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger root, grated (or 1 tsp ground ginger)
- 2 tsp coconut oil
- pinch of black pepper
- optional: ¼ tsp cardamom
- honey to taste
*To make the turmeric paste: combine 2 tbsp turmeric powder with 1 tbsp boiling water. Store any extra in a glass jar in the fridge for a week.
- Warm the coconut milk in a small saucepan, but do not boil.
- Stir in turmeric and ginger.
- Add the coconut oil and a pinch of black pepper, and gently heat together until melted and heated through.
- Stir in honey to taste.
- To create foam, use a wire whisk or immersion blender. For an extra frothy latté, use a high-speed blender.
- Sip, savour and enjoy the golden goodness!