Friday, October 10, 2014

My Cuppa: Feeling good about getting stuffed!

In my opinion, October is the kick-off to eating season! Yup. Gone are the light eats of summer. It’s time to stuff your face silly with mashed potatoes, turkey, holiday goodies, and Halloween treats! This all comes at a price of course. The achy stomach, weight gain, and feelings of guilt. Can’t do much about the guilt, and there's always exercise for the added weight.  However, there is help for tummy troubles. Fennel seeds! 

Lovin' spoonful!

Fennel seeds are flavourful, aromatic, and have many medicinal properties. They smell and taste like licorice. Traditionally, they are used to as a remedy for digestion issues. If you've ever been to an Indian restaurant for their all-you-can-eat buffets, you may have been offered fennel seeds at the end of your eating extravaganza. They may be candy-coated in various colours or stark naked on their own. Either way, they help calm your stomach and freshen your breath. Just take a spoonful and slowly chew away your troubles.

You may also enjoy these seeds of wonder as a beverage. A fennel seed tisane is super easy to make and does not take much time at all. Just boil up some water and pour it over some seeds. I use 1 teaspoon for 2 cups of water. I also like to crush up the seeds a bit using a pestle and mortar to release some of the flavours. Allow 10 minutes to infuse. Then sit back and sip away. You can remove the seeds using a sieve, but I just let mine sink to the bottom of the cup to collect, and gather up to enjoy chewing once I've finished drinking the brew.

The colour of the liquor is a clear, pale yellow-green. The licorice taste is not overly strong as it would be if you chewed on the seeds straight. It’s soothing! Even the aroma is light and pleasant.

What's swimming in my drink?

You can find fennel seeds available in tea bags for convenience, albeit pulverized to dust. I recommend buying the seeds in bulk and preparing your drink as I described. Then, get in touch with your inner-chef and create all sorts of dishes using fennel seeds in both sweet and savoury goodies. Enjoy!


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