Cranberry Ginger Tea (Vegan, Refined Sugar Free)

December 15, 2014
Missed previous recipes in this series? Here's the first and second day.

Happy third day of Christmas!

Let's talk about this tea. It's chock full of good-for-you whole foods and high in antioxidant power. Feel a little cold coming on? Cranberries are packed with vitamin C, and the lemon honey mix is perfect for a sore throat. Stomach a little upset? Ginger is great for that! Getting crampy? TEA. Cranberries are one of the healthiest foods out there and they're cheap. So are lemons and ginger. I threw some rose hips in, which were free because I picked them in the bush, but you can leave them out if you don't have any on hand. They're not required for this recipe, but they add a little health boost. Three rose hips have the same amount of vitamin C as an orange. Embrace inexpensive whole foods and dump your superfood powders that cost an arm and a leg.

I know cranberry juice is often touted as a way to prevent or cure bladder infections, but this won't really work for that. If you have a UTI you need 100% pure cranberry juice, no sugar added, and not blended with any other juices. As well, if you find yourself getting a lot of UTIs, just pee right after you have sex. Not the most romantic, I know, but it should prevent the majority of infections. Increase your water intake too. Sugar contributes to UTIs, so pop and juice aren't good options. (Is this appropriate for a holiday drink post? Why not.)

This drink is a beautiful deep pink colour and tastes a little tart and spicy, but isn't quite what you expect during the holidays. It can be served either hot or cold. If you serve it cold, pop a few frozen cranberries in there for pretty ice cubes that won't water it down. You could probably throw some booze in there too and make it into a healthier cocktail.

I just had to race around the house trying to find the envelope I wrote this recipe on. It was on the other side of the envelope I wrote yesterday's recipe on. I need a better system.

4 cups filtered water
1 cup washed fresh cranberries
1/3 cup lemon juice
Lemon rinds (from juicing lemons)
Two thumbs fresh ginger, cut into 1 cm pieces
1/4 cup dried rose hips (optional)
1/2 cup honey or maple syrup

In a large pot, combine the water, cranberries, lemon juice, lemon rinds, ginger, and rose hips (if using).

Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Stir in the honey or maple syrup. Turn the heat off and let it steep for a further 10 minutes.

Serve hot or cold.

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