People have been using turmeric for over 4,000 years, most likely originating in the Vedic culture of India. Turmeric played an important role in cooking, religious ceremonies, and Ayurvedic medicine. Traces of garlic, ginger, and turmeric were discovered in ancient Indian cooking pots from 2500 BCE. It slowly traveled to China, other parts of Asia, Africa, and Europe especially along the silk road trading routes. Turmeric is now used world wide in cuisine especially curried dishes, as a coloring agent, and in medicine and supplements. (This fascinating chart lists over 50 different names for turmeric worldwide.) In fact, India produces approximately 80% of the world’s turmeric.
Most of us are familiar with turmeric and its golden hue. Turmeric produces a phytochemical called curcumin, which provides the signature yellow color. Many of us have probably stained our hands for a few hours handling the fresh root. (I still have kitchen towels stained yellow from wiping up spilled turmeric powder on the counter!) Did you know that turmeric has some potentially amazing healthy benefits too? Curcumin, one of the chemical components in turmeric, has anti-inflammatory properties. It is also currently being researched in the treatment and prevention of cancer and a host of diseases from IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), ulcerative colitis, and lupus (see website).
My latest CSA box from Spade and Clover gardens contained some beautiful fresh ginger and turmeric roots. I had plenty to use in some curried dishes and also to make a wonderfully spiced and fragrant golden milk. I like to use golden milk in oatmeal, pancakes, lattes, and baking. Today, I decided to make some golden milk overnight oat cups to speed up those weekday breakfasts!
Ingredients for Golden Milk
- 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 tbsp cinnamon or 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1/2 inch peeled ginger root roughly chopped
- 1 inch peeled turmeric root roughly chopped
- 1 orange zested and juiced
- 1 tbsp honey, maple syrup, or date syrup
- Combine all ingredients together in a small saucepan.
- Simmer gently for 20 minutes. Taste and add more sweetener of choice if desired.
- Strain milk and store in refrigerator until ready to use.
Golden milk can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator for multiple uses.
Overnight Oats with Golden Milk
- 1/2 cup oats (I use old-fashioned)
- 1 1/2 tsp chia seeds
- 1 tbsp maple toasted walnuts*
- 2 tbsp apple butter or maple syrup
- 2/3 cup golden milk*
Maple Toasted Walnuts
- 1 cup raw walnuts
- 1-2 tbsp maple syrup
Maple toasted walnuts
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Toss 1 cup of walnuts with 1-2 tbsp of maple syrup.
- Toast in oven for 5-7 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool.
- Store in an airtight container until ready to use.
- Combine oats, chia seeds, maple toasted walnuts, apple butter or maple syrup, and golden milk in a container. Stir.
- Refrigerate overnight.
- When ready to serve top with fruit of choice, additional nuts, and maple syrup if desired. Fresh oranges and crisp apple slices pair nicely with the ginger, cinnamon, and turmeric flavor profile in the golden milk.