Part of the ginger root family, turmeric makes a warming tea with a distinctive terracotta color. Originally popular in India, where it is believed to have anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric tea is assertive on the palate with a peppery, spicy, slightly bitter flavor.

Start to Finish: 10 minutesServings: 2Difficulty Level: Beginner

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • ½ teaspoon ginger powder or ginger root
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 cup coconut milk (optional)

Step 1: Combine the spices

Bring the water to a boil and add the turmeric, cinnamon, ginger powder and black pepper. The pepper in particular highlights the competing aromas of the other spices. If fresh ginger root is too hard, choose instead a grated finger of peeled root.

Tips

Like ginger, turmeric can be prepared from a fresh root, where available. Peel the root and grate it fine, but wear plastic gloves to avoid ending up with fingers worthy of a heavy smoker.

Step 2: Simmer the tea

Turn down the heat and simmer for up to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Although the simplest form of the tea is just turmeric, honey and water, it’s well worth going all out for a spice blend to counter turmeric’s rather earthy taste.

Step 3: Sweeten the brew

Remove the tea from the heat and stir in the honey. Alternative approaches call for mixing the spices into the honey to make a smooth paste before adding the water.

Step 4: Strain and serve

Pour the tea through a strainer into clear heatproof glasses and serve.

  • Replace one of the cups of water with a cup of milk for a creamier version. Turmeric by itself will not dissolve in water, but it will dissolve in the fats present in milk, ultimately making it easier for the body to absorb during digestion. 
  • Mix turmeric, a pinch of black pepper and normal cow’s milk for an Ayurvedic-inspired golden milk. Sweeten with honey for a creamy, vibrant-colored warming drink. 
  • Use coconut milk for a dairy-free version, which nevertheless delivers a creamy, soothing beverage. If fresh coconuts are available, combine equal measures of coconut water and coconut milk, and heat gently with some freshly grated turmeric and ginger root.