Wars have been fought over spices. Explorers set out to find the strange and exotic lands where they were found. Some spices were more valuable than gold and silver. Spices have been associated with beauty, health, and in some cultures, witchcraft! Today, in addition to being added to foods and dishes we make, spices are used in oils, cosmetics, preservatives and flavorings.
Spices contain some of the most potent antioxidant compounds on earth, called phenols, which block damaging compounds. They are a low calorie and fairly inexpensive way to add antioxidant and anti-inflammatory power to your diet. Some rank even higher in antioxidant activity than some fruits and vegetables!
I recently found a few good tasting and easy drinks that can help you get some of these phenols into your eating and drinking plan. As the weather cools, try a few of these to refresh you and keep you spicy!
To Your Vitality!
High Powered Coffee
- Coffee (about 10-12 oz – a LARGE mug)
- 1 T coconut oil
- 1-2 T grass-fed butter
Add a few of these:
- Coconut milk
- Cacao powder
- Dark chocolate
- ½ t. vanilla
- Cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger
- Dash of stevia.
Blend and enjoy!
Hot Cocoa Mix (bring on the snow today!)
- 3 T. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 t. cinnamon
- 2 T. coconut sugar or 1 T stevia (try hazelnut or another flavor)
- 1/8 t sea salt (or omit)
- Mix together and add to 1 cup of almond or coconut milk. Yummy and smooth!
Chai Tea – a delicious, warming tea for any season!
Chai tea gets its name from a mix, referred to here as Chai Masala, that includes numerous spices:
- ½ T black pepper
- 2 T cinnamon
- 2T ground ginger
- 1 T cardamon
- 1 T ground cloves
- ½ T nutmeg
To make Chai Tea:
- ½ cup water and ½ cup almond or coconut milk
- 2 t. black tea
- ½ t. Chai Masala Mix
- Honey, stevia or sugar
Mix water, black tea and masala mix together, heat on stove just until boiling. Remove pan from heat and stir in milk and sweetener choice. Return to heat till boiling. Put into a mug and enjoy!