Turmeric Tea Latte/Haldi ka Doodh
THEME:#183 INDIAN SUPERFOOD
Missing two very exciting previous themes for FoodieMonday made me feel sad, so I thought come what may I have to participate in this one. I nearly didn’t as I’ve just arrived into Bangalore and with the house shut for a few months, it takes time to get it up and running.
Wedding shopping in Mumbai for my niece’s wedding was fun and a good way to spend some time with my sister in law and niece, but we all came down with coughs and colds. It was this situation that prompted me to make the famous but very easy to make haldi ka doodh or what the western world calls Turmeric Tea Latte or Golden Turmeric Milk. While every family has its own recipe and they all vouch theirs is the best for every ailment under the stars, I hated the concoction that my mum use to make for us whenever we were sick. I’ve had it pushed down my throat, had to pinch my nose and drink it, have retched a few times with mum’s stern looks and forced it down the tummy. Freedom from this concoction came when I got married. I could make it the way I liked, without salt. My mum would swear by the traditional addition of salt to the haldi milk for full benefit.
Why am I talking about turmeric milk? Well, this week Vidya who blogs at MasalaChilli very thoughtfully suggested Indian Superfoods as our #183rd theme and gave us three options Turmeric, Makhana (Foxnut) and Moringa.
Turmeric or Curcuma longa is a famous and common spice widely used by Ayurveda. The roots from the curcuma longa are used in the fresh form or the dried and powdered form. The yellowish orangish powder is commonly used in cooking in all homes in the Indian Sub Continent. No masala tin or dabba will be without turmeric powder or haldi or hardar as its commonly known. Turmeric is also very much a part of any pooja or havan and some traditional festivals.
Why is turmeric or the golden powder so famous and widely used for ailments? Well because it has so many benefits and hardly any side effects. Have you ever heard about not consuming too much turmeric? I haven’t.
Here are some of the health benefits of turmeric. The secret weapon in the turmeric is curcumin:
- Curcurmin is believed to halt enzymes that may be responsible for turning environmental toxins into carcinogens.
- Curcumin improves digestion of fats and sugars.
- As a powerful anti inflammatory, it helps find inflammation therefore helping the body fight germs, stomach ailments, gum diseases etc.
- Helps to relieve arthritic pain.
- Beneficial for the heart and the circulatory system
- Helps in certain skin ailments like itchiness and psoriasis.
- Helps in the proper functioning of the liver.
- Turmeric paste wards off pimples and acne.
- Improves skin complexion and hair health.
Whenever we have cuts or grazes, immediately a paste of turmeric is applied as an antiseptic and to stop the bleeding. Turmeric powder is used in homemade facial masks. I use to apply a paste of chickpea flour, turmeric powder and yogurt on the whole body for my kids when they were young. Not only does it help the skin complexion but also helped to reduce the effects of sun burns and chlorine on their skin from swimming pools.
While I would have loved to use fresh turmeric for this recipe, I couldn’t find any at the greengrocers near my home so had to make the turmeric tea latte using turmeric powder.
Turmeric Tea Latte/Golden Milk/ Haldi ka doodh is usually enjoyed piping hot to ward off colds, coughs, fight infections, general wellness and is a great way to consume turmeric. Consuming this milk on a daily basis is not harmful for the body. I remember having this golden milk every day after my pregnancies as a way to heal the body and is beneficial when breast feeding the babies.
Our family recipe for the haldi ka doodh/golden milk was to add ajwain and ghee or butter if one was suffering from bad chesty coughs. My grandmother always claimed that the butter or ghee would help to smoothen the throat.
Check out this healthy hot drink and include in your daily diet. This is the version that I enjoy. One important point to remember is that it is recommended that one consumes turmeric with black pepper. Piperine in black pepper increases the absorption and effects of curcumin.
TURMERIC TEA LATTE/GOLDEN MILK/HALDI KA DOODH
Makes 1 cup
¼ cup water
1 inch fresh turmeric root or ½ tsp turmeric powder
1 inch cinnamon stick
6-8 pepper corns
¾ cup milk (dairy,vegan)
1-2 tsp honey
1 tsp butter/ghee
¼ tsp ajwain (carom seeds)
- Add water into a pan and put on medium heat.
- Lightly crush cinnamon, cloves, peppercorns and cardamom with a pestle and mortar.
- Add this mixture to the water. Lower the heat.
- Let the spices simmer in the water for 5-8 minutes.
- Strain the water. Return the spicy water to the pan.
- Put the pan over medium heat.
- Add milk and turmeric powder or root. If you are using the root, wash it thoroughly and grate it finely or crush it. Remember to use utensils that will not stain like glass or steel ones.
- Let the milk and turmeric come to a boil and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes.
- Add honey and mix well.
- Pour the golden milk into a serving cup.
- Melt butter or ghee in a small pan over low heat.
- Add the ajwain and let it roast for 2-3 seconds.
- Pour the butter or ghee into the golden milk.
- Sip it hot.
- If you are using fresh turmeric, you may drink it with the crushed or grated turmeric or strain it and then drink.
- I add the other spices for health benefits and also for the taste as just adding turmeric alone makes it taste slightly bitter.
- Adding butter/ghee and ajwain is totally optional but it helps to relieve colds and coughs.
- Use brown sugar, jaggery or maple syrup instead of honey.
- For a vegan version use almond milk or cashew nut milk with jaggery or maple syrup.
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