Thursday, November 1, 2012

IHCC: Indian Tea Party!

And Indian tea party—what fun! Jaffrey's books are full of ideas. Some even have tea party menus provided. I was really looking forward to this week's cooking until ... I came down with a cold. No energy and not too much interest in cooking. I paged dejectedly through my stack of Jaffrey books looking for some low-effort inspiration till I came across Salabat (Ginger Tea) (World-of-the-East Vegetarian Cooking, p342). Just thing thing!

Salabat is a tea served throughout most of Asia. Jaffrey writes:
My own grandmother served it to us in India when we had colds, saying that it would make us fell all better. It did.
This sounded exactly like what we needed around here. So off I went to the kitchen to make a pot of ginger tea. Two 1-inch cubes of fresh ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped, are cooked with 4 cups of water and honey. First, it's simmered, covered, for 25 minutes. Then it's boiled, uncovered, for another 15 minutes. Strain and serve. This recipe calls for 3 heaping tablespoons of honey (does honey "heap"?), which seemed way to much to me, so I used only 2. This was still very sweet, but was balanced by the sharp ginger taste.

Do I feel better? Maybe. I might try again when I've replenished my stash of ginger.

More or less the same recipe can be found in Jaffrey's Far Eastern Cookery (p258), calling for 3 cubes of ginger with 1 liter of water (more or less 4 cups) and only 4-5 teaspoons of honey.

 This post is shared with this week's I Heart Cooking Clubs.


  1. This sounds deliciously spicy and warm. Perfect for an evening on the couch with a book, a blanket, and the fireplace crackling!

    I've got some fresh ginger, in fact. I'm going to make a cauliflower curry soup this weekend, and I suspect this tea will make a bracing counterpoint to that. Gonna try it, thanks!

  2. Lovely! I love ginger, even have a pot of ginger plant that I'm going to harvest very soon! Would give this a try!
    Hope your cold is much better now!

  3. I'll have to remember to tuck this recipe away for sick tummies. Ginger has amazing healing properties. It makes excellent sense! Thanks for hearing a different drummer!

  4. I love a cup of ginger tea when I'm feeling under the weather...I like to make big batches and keep a jar in the fridge. A small mug a day makes me feel healthy (placebo? perhaps....but I'll take it).

  5. Oh wow, keeping it in the fridge -- what a good idea! Easy to make it up in a bigger batch and save it away.

  6. This tea really caught my eye while paging through the book. Ginger is so good for you, and helps with tummy issues. This one is on my list! So glad you shared it.

  7. Next time I'm sick, I'll have to try this. I love hot tea and honey when I have a sore throat. Ginger would be a nice bonus!

  8. I was thinking the same thing - what a perfect tea for a sore throat!

  9. Sounds like a great tea for a cold! Hope you are better real soon.