Healing herbal teas for digestion

peppermint-leaves

Herbal teas are best brewed for about 5 to 10 minutes in boiling water. You can add a little honey if you like. Here are some herbal teas that are good for improving digestion:

Chamomile

Chamomile has a calming effect on the digestive system. It relaxes and soothes the bowel muscles and is helps to ease spasms. It is perfect as a night cap before going to bed.

Ginger

Ginger tea is good for tummy upsets. You can purchase it either in tea bags or use grated fresh ginger.

To make ginger tea, grate some fresh ginger root (about half a teaspoonful) into a cup and then add boiling water. Leave for at least 5 minutes to steep and then strain through a small sieve.

Peppermint

Peppermint tea is a fantastic anti-spasmodic. I prefer to use fresh leaves from the garden or organic tea bags (For some reason the non-organic ones have a blah taste to them).

If you are using fresh leaves from the garden, select about five to ten of the bigger ones and cut or rip them up to release more flavour. Add to the bottom of your tea cup and add boiling water.  Leave for at least 5 minutes to steep and then strain through a small sieve.

Other herbal teas

  • Fennel is good for flatulence

Prepared herbal teas

Rigatoni with sausage, fennel and tomato (Italian)

Rigatoni with sausage, fennel and tomato

Cooked for the Italian entry in the Euro Cup and Plate challenge.

2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tsp fennel powder
3 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
4 Italian sausages, skin removed
1 tsp thyme leaves
100ml red wine
400g tin chopped tomatoes
400g rigatoni (tube pasta)
grated Parmesan, to serve

  1. Using a mortar and pestle, crush the garlic and fennel with a pinch of salt.
  2. Heat the oil in a saucepan and cook the onion for a few minutes over low heat to soften it. Break up the sausage meat with your hands and add to the pan. Increase the heat and cook until the meat is lightly browned. Season with salt and pepper. Add the the garlic, fennel and thyme and mix in. Then add the wine and stir the sauce.
  3. Cook the sauce for about 5 minutes or until the wine is reduced, then add the tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened.
  4. Cook the pasta in a large saucepan until al dente. Drain reserving some water. Add to the sauce, toss well and serve sprinkled with the Parmesan.

Serves 4.