Growing up in an Indian household meant turning to natural and food remedies for minor ailments. If you had a tummy ache, Mom made us eat carom seeds or even cumin seeds. If we had a cold sore in the mouth, she would make us keep a clove on the sore for a few hours. There are so many more remedies that my mom and grandmother used but the one I remember and is most popular these days is turmeric.
As soon the cold weather set in or the first cough or sneeze of the season was heard, my mother would add turmeric to everything we ate. She would also make us drink Haldi Doodh or turmeric milk before bed each night. As a child, I hated this. As an adult and a mom, it is now my go to. Over the years, I’ve changed it from the basic turmeric and milk to adding a few new ingredients. Take a look!
- Turmeric – the most important ingredient as it has natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The powder form is most commonly used though sometimes, I do use the actual root.
- Black Pepper – has anti-inflammatory properties and improves brain function. It is most important in this recipe because it activates the curcumin properties in turmeric therefore making the turmeric much more effective.
- Honey – is full of antioxidants, antibacterial, and antifungul properties. It’s also an age old remedy used to help sore throats.
- Cardamom pods – have antioxidant and diuretic properties, and is rich in compounds that help fight against inflammation.
- Ginger – also has anti-inflammatory properties, helps lower blood sugars, and improve heart disease risk factors. Ginger also helps fight against bacteria and viruses which can help reduce the risk for infections.
- Cinnamon – is also loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. In addition, it helps lower blood sugar levels, and helps fight bacterial and fungal infections.
Basically, every spice added to this recipe has anti-inflammatory or antioxidant properties or both. I normally use cow’s milk when I make this for the kids but I have made it with almond milk and it has turned out just as good. I do recommend not to use sweetened milk if you are using a plant based milk as it changes the taste of the final product.
Here’s to wishing a healthy winter and a Happy New Year with my first recipe this year!
Haldi Doodh (Golden Milk)
- 2 1/2 c milk (cow's or plant based - make sure it's unsweetened)
- 3/4 tsp turmeric powder or 1" turmeric root, grated
- 4 cardamom pods, slightly crushed
- 1/2" ginger, grated
- 5-6 whole peppercorns
- 1" cinnamon stick
- 1 Tbsp Honey (can substitute maple syrup to make vegan)
- Add milk to a small saucepan and heat on medium flame for 1-2 minutes.
- Add in the turmeric and whisk well to incorporate.
- Add in the remaining spices and mix well.
- Simmer for 5-7 minutes. Remove from flame and let it steep for another 5 minutes.
- Strain into mugs.
- Drink warm.
Here are the tools I used for this recipe: