Wholefood Cooking

Kudzu | Umeboshi | Ginger Drink for Cold and Flu Season

Right now I am thousands of kilometres up in the air, flying to Sydney. I’m sitting by the window and the sun is streaming in – all the clouds, cold and rain are far below me. It’s delicious to feel this sun warming my bones. I’ve got a busy schedule in Sydney with classes, seminars and talks, so being well is on my mind. When I was in Sydney this time last year, my bestie and colleague Holly Davis had caught the dastardly flu – omg it was horrible for her, she was seriously and very, very sick. We were talking on the phone (over a cup of tea) recently and of course the conversation steered to how we can best keep ourselves well. We decided to do a FB Live session (which you can find on my FB page) and whilst it didn’t go exactly to plan, there is still a lot of good information there. In that vein I’d love to share those ideas with you and give you the recipe I talked about in that FB Live post. They may well be of use.

Right now in both hemispheres nature is moving. As we move away from the equinox, the energy begins to rise once again from resting deep in the ground and is becoming warmer in the Southern Hemisphere and vice versa in the Northern Hemisphere. Nature is beginning it’s descent into the resting period. It is not a straight path, the energies are in flux. This is peak season for cold and flus’, no matter where you are. This is what I do to help reduce the chance that I fall vulnerable to it all.

LIFE STYLE

  1. Get Enough Rest
    I have learnt the hard, hard way to ensure that I get enough rest. That I don’t ‘soldier on’. A couple of days going more slowly, off or resting is better than 2 weeks in bed and weeks to really feel well again.
  2. Let Go
    I am learning to let go. There are many things I can’t control and it’s too stressful trying to. Part of my work transformation is finding the way to work that is less stressful and more delicious. This is a big part of me moving my classes online as I simply can’t travel everywhere to do them. I’m just loving the creativity it offers, but better still the greater time I get to share with you in this format. If you would like to see what that’s looking like head to www.wholefoodcookingonlineclasses.com
  3. Get some Fresh Air and Get Close to Nature
    Late Winter / Early Spring in the Southern Hemisphere is still very cold but gorgeous for getting out and walking. Early Autumn in the Northern Hemisphere – is there ever a better time to be out as the leaves come falling down?
  4. Simplify
    Your life, your food.

ON AND IN YOUR BODY

  1. Chicken Bone Stock
    It’s in the fat my friends. That’s where those bug fighting good guys are. It’s also in the broth – nourishing and easy to digest (again, less stressful, this time on the digestive system).
  2. Coconut Oil (Fat Again)
    This is a wonderful source of your short chain fatty acids – anti viral, anti fungal and anti bacterial.
  3. Animal Fat
    Egg yolk, butter, cream – brilliant for the immune system.
  4. Shiitake Mushrooms
    Excellent Immune boosters. Dried are my fave and I only buy the Spiral brand, in the U.S check out the Eden brand.
  5. Ginger and Turmeric
    Myself, I’m not a fan of Turmeric just don’t like the flavour and astringent aspect of it, but if you do go for it. Have both, any way you like them.
  6. Citrus
    In the southern hemisphere citrus is everywhere. Early spring in Northern Hemisphere lemons may be around.
  7. Kudzu and Umeboshi Plum
    Kudzu is a highly alkalinising starch with strong descending properties. It’s also wonderful for the immune system, brilliant for reducing stress and anti-inflammatory.  Ume Plum is actually a type of apricot fermented with salt and perilla (shiso herb). It’s highly anti bacterial and alkalinising to boot. It comes as whole ‘plums’ or paste (that’s paste you can see in the picture above). I’m going to give you a recipe for one of my fave ‘cure -alls’ the infamous Kudzu, Ume, Tamari and Ginger Drink. Best brands – Spiral and Eden (see above).
  8. Healing Chicken Soup (Healing Fish Soup is none too shabby either)
    This recipe appears in my first book Wholefood – Heal, Nourish, Delight and combines chicken stock, shiitake and ginger. It’s a winner.
  9. Hot Bath and Sesame Oil Rub
    Sesame oil is revered in Ayurveda for it’s anti – bacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti – oxident rich profile. It’s brilliant for reducing Vata, which in these in – between seasons (especially Autumn in the Northern Hemisphere) can increase. Make sure it’s the best quality, organic and naturally sourced Sesame Oil available. Again, I would look to the brands noted for the Shiitake Mushrooms above – Spiral and Eden.

I hope that helps and gives you some ideas. Do make the Kudzu, Ume, Tamari and Ginger Drink though, it’s just wonderful….

x Jude

Please note that none of the information in this post can take the place of professional advice and quite possibly, is not proven in the professional, medical world.

Kudzu, Ume, Tamari (or Shoyu) and Ginger Drink

Ingredients

1 1/2 - 2 cups water
4 - 5 coins ginger, go for it. If you like turmeric add that too.
1 generous tablespoon kudzu
1/2 ume plum or 1 teaspoon ume paste
tamari / shoyu to taste - about 1 teaspoon

You have a couple of options in regards to the soy – Shoyu (always wheat based but far more complex in flavour) or a Wheat Free Tamari (less complex in flavour). Both are fine. Whilst I am a great fan of those two brands mentioned previously – Spiral and Eden, just ensure that yours is real soy sauce – traditionally fermented.

If you would like to add turmeric, go for it.

The tablespoon measure below is for a 20ml. Adjust if using a 15ml.

 

Directions

Add the ginger (and turmeric if using) to 1 1/2 cups water and bring to the boil. Let gently simmer for a couple of minutes then remove and leave to sit for about 10 mins. Leave the ginger in or strain it out – I like to leave some of it in. If you’re in a hurry and want to omit this step, simply heat some water and squeeze lots of finely grated ginger so that the ginger juice runs into the water. Do this to taste.
Add the kudzu to a small bowl and mix to a smooth paste with the remaining 1/2 cup water. This is best done with your fingers.
Remove the ginger water from the stove and whisk in the kudzu. And keep whisking, it will begin to thicken immediately. Return to the stove and only just bring to the boil, whisking as it does.
Add the tamari, ume and stir through. Adjust flavour to taste.