Stiffling the Sniffles: Korean Treats

Stiffling the Sniffles: Korean Treats

Three weeks ago you were given four recipes for soups to help you get through sicknesses and the cold days of winter, but sometimes soups are a bit too heavy on the stomach when you just want something warm to pick you up.

Here we have four light treats that will boost your mood as well as help your body fight off the nasty colds that may burden you during these cold months.

Yujacha (유자차)

photo by maangchi

Starting off this list, we have yujacha, a tea made with the marmalade consisting of the Yuja fruit and honey. Since ancient times, it has been used to heal respiratory issues, such as coughs and sore throats, and was commonly brewed as a remedy for seasickness. The vitamin C content, about 90 mg per teaspoon of marmalade, is able to stimulate the immune system of the body, helping to prevent infections and other diseases as well as relieving chills and headaches. It also acts as an antioxidant to reduce oxidative stress in the body. Anti-inflammatory properties in this tea also make it a trusted remedy for fever. The stimulant nature of yujacha and its essential oils can help to boost circulation and improve discoloration of the body and skin. One of the key benefits of yujacha is that it is a trusted digestive aid and stimulant. A glass or two of this flavorful tea will help regulate your bowel movements and reduce symptoms of constipation, diarrhea, gas, and bloating. Try making your own by following this recipe.

Insamcha (인삼차)

photo from The Korean Herald

Next, we have insamcha, a tea made from insam or ginseng, a fleshy root herb, that had been used for thousands of years as a natural remedy for various illnesses. Ginseng has the ability to boost the nervous and immune system, strengthen and build muscles, treat stomach disorders and prevent vomiting and nausea, and much more. It can also make you more resistant to sicknesses like the cold and flu, treat postmenopausal symptoms in women, treat diabetes, infections, and headaches. Due to its potency, it is not recommended for those suffering from high blood pressure. Since ginseng is a stimulate used in many energy drinks, it is important to avoid drinking during the night as it may cause insomnia. Click here for an easy recipe!

Baesuk (배숙)

photo by maangchi

The last tea on the list is more of a punch with a sweet snack. Baesuk is a Korean punch which is traditionally made by poaching or steaming Korean pear (bae; 배) filled with honey, ginger, jujubes (Korean dates) and pine nuts. Served hot, it is commonly used as a remedy for the common colds, sore throats, or coughs. The ginger is believed to aid with keeping the body warm, the honey is thought to soothe the throat as well as suppress coughs which has been proven through scientific studies, and the Korean pear is said to help with digestion. Here is a recipe to try this at home!

Yaksik (약식)

photo by maangchi

Lastly, to go with these teas, you need a sweet snack and there’s nothing better to go with healthy Korean teas than the nutritious Korean rice cake, yaksik, which quite literally means “medicine food” (yak meaning “medicine” and sik meaning “food”). The amazing nutritional properties in the sweet rice used to make yaksik is that it is gentle on the stomach and it coats the stomach which makes this snack great for those who struggle with digestion problems or frequent heartburn. In addition to sweet rice, jujube (daechu; 대추) and chestnuts are added to yaksik. Jujube has long been known to be an anti-aging food in eastern medicine and it also has calming effects that can help with nervous tension, anxiety, and insomnia. Chestnuts have tons of vitamin C and vitamin B which help to also strengthen your stomach, especially with diarrhea. Finally, this dessert does not contain any flour so it is nearly gluten-free other than the soy sauce used in the recipe is made with wheat, so be cautious if you have Celiac Disease or are sensitive to gluten. To learn to make yaksik yourself, click here.

Warm, delicious, and nutritious! What more could one ask for in treat?! Even when you are sick, you sometimes can not help but crave something sweet and hopefully, these four recipes will satisfy those cravings as well as help you fight off the colds, but if warm soups are more of what you’re craving, check out part one here.  Be sure to stay healthy and snack happily during this winter season!

Make sure that you're all warm this winter season!

Written by Lindsey Conley

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