Turmeric is one incredible ingredient. It is a root, used for thousands of years for it’s anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. Typically, used in Indian cuisine, it is most often used in preparing curries and teas. Turmeric, also known as curcumin, has the ability to increase the production of enzymes that digest fats and sugars, and also stop cholesterol from forming gallstones. It can prevent the release of histamine in the stomach, which can soothe stress-related stomach pain. It is also said to reduce halitosis and gum inflammation.
Golden Milk is an ancient Indian hot drink that fuses turmeric and a few other spices in milk. I like mine best with a plant-based milk, and upon experimentation, I found I like it best with the tasty tiger nut milk, or Horchata. The tiger nut, native to Nigeria and Spain, has a warm, dessert0like flavour, when I first tried it I though it tasted just like the Italian liqueur often used in cakes, Galiano. I first tried it when I lived in Valencia, trying for the first time the famous sweetened and cooling drink Horchata. Now you can find Horchata unsweetened in a few places in Valencia, but if you can’t, you can easily make your own in the same manner you would make any plant-based milk. Take a look at my very simple recipes for making Plant-based Milks.
Along with Turmeric, the tiger nut too has health properties worth mentioning. They are a protein-source, like most nuts and seeds, and are also good sources of magnesium the energy-boosting mineral), Vitamin E and C, as well as fibre. They are considered to be one of the lesser known super foods because, nutritionally, they offer a lot of bang for their buck.
Dried tiger nuts can be purchased online, or found cheaply and in abundance in the pretty Spanish city I used to live in, Valencia. If you cannot find them, or prefer to use another plant-based milk though, by all means do, Golden Milk will still be delicious.
I usually add, Ayurvedic style, a pinch of black pepper and cayenne pepper for boosting mineral absorption, and because I like spice. You can exclude them if you prefer though. This recipe fuses two of my favourite ingredients, the tiger nut and turmeric. It is easy and quick, and drinking it after an evening meal is a great way to aid relaxation and also help boost the immune system during sleep.
Unsweetened horchata (tiger nut milk), 300ml
Turmeric, fresh, 1 piece / 3-4 tsp
Ground cinnamon, 1-2 tsp
Ginger, fresh, 1 small nob/ 2-3 tsp
Ground black pepper, a pinch
Ground cayenne pepper, a pinch
mejdool dates or Chinese red dates, 1-2
1. Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
2. Strain the liquid to remove any pulp from the ginger or turmeric skin.
3. Pour into a small saucepan and heat up for around 5 minutes on a medium heat until hot, then serve and enjoy immediately.
Use a cinnamon stick to stir. Add a drop of raw local honey, stevia syrup, agave syrup or maple syrup if you don’t find this one sweet enough. I think it is, but you might not. Add a star anise for dded flavour to the hot drink. I like to suck it after the drink is finished as it tastes very sweet.
If you don’t have fresh turmeric or fresh ginger, simply use the ground alternative.