Thursday, 17 November 2016


Do you say Turmeric (as in Tuesday) or Turmeric (as in turtle) - one of those words which always confuses me. Does it matter as long as we are talking about the same thing? It's latin name is Curcuma longa and has been associated with Southern Asia for a very long time.  A wonderfully exotic spice, amazingly delicious, colourful, anti-inflammatory root, full of antioxidants and purported to stave off cancer and Alzheimer's.

Whether the claims are true or not, I'm convinced I need more of it in my diet.

Turmeric has been part of traditional medicine, or alternative Siddha, for thousands of years in southern India. It is used in savoury and sweet dishes and as a dye for clothing for Saris and Buddhist's robes. 

In India a marriage ritual sees bunches of turmeric tied around wrists or in Sri Lanka it is often tied with string and hung around the neck as an offering to the gods. So many uses for what looks like an insignificant root. I think it's one hell of a good thing to have in your life.

I don't have any recipes to pass on for using turmeric as a dye. Many of my curries and Tagine recipes contain it, but I can honestly say that one of the easiest ways to get it into your system is by adding it to milk. Sound strange?

Milk with turmeric or 'Golden Milk' is becoming very popular in the USA. The milk can be drunk by itself or added to your Bircher Muesli for breakfast. The initial paste preparation takes 5 minutes and will keep for 1 - 2 weeks in the fridge.

Firstly you need to make a paste which will be the basis of your milk.

Turmeric Paste

1/4 cup of turmeric
1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper
1/2 cup filtered or rain water
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Mix all ingredients together in a small saucepan and on a low heat, mix until a thick paste is formed. This will take just a couple of minutes. 
Take off the heat and cool then place in a container and store in the fridge. It 
can be stored for 1 -2 weeks.

Turmeric Milk

1 cup almond milk
1/4 teaspoon turmeric paste
1 teaspoon coconut oil
honey to taste

Add milk, turmeric and coconut oil to a small saucepan and heat on low until the all the ingredients are mixed together. Don't allow the mixture to reach boiling point. Add honey and stir until melted, then take off the heat. Cool.

How to Use Turmeric Milk

As you can see, Bircher Muesli takes on a whole new dimension! You can use your favourite Muesli, whack it into a jar and steep in the milk over night! Top with some fresh fruit and yoghurt and you have a breakfast that will keep you going well into the day. I find this so filling that I don't generally need to have lunch.

I added some plain yoghurt and a few raspberries and enjoyed breakfast in the garden.

Turmeric milk can be drunk by itself. Once you have made it, addd a little extra honey and drink while still warm.

Just remember, like everything else, take small doses of turmeric to see how your body responds to it. It is good for you, there is no doubt about that. I don't advocate taking it everyday, but a couple of times a week should be fine for most people.

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