This winter has been cold and rough. Even my family who usually goes unscathed during cold and flu season has been knocked out of commission a few times. We all know the historical benefits of adding citrus to your diet and even today many believe it to be a natural source for boosting your immunity and keeping cold and flu away.
Although oranges are a popular pick as a school snack for my kids I find I don’t consume enough citrus myself. If drinking a glass of orange juice seems a little underwhelming, how about making a batch of Sunkist Five Spice–Blood Orange Shrub?
Handcrafted shrubs are easy to make and a great beverage alternative. This version with crimson blood orange and exotic spices is not only delicious but visually stunning, too.
Makes 4 cups (32 ounces)
- 1/2 cup clover honey
- 3 cups water
- 1 teaspoon ground five spice powder
- 6 slices fresh ginger
- 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
- 2 Sunkist® Moro (blood) oranges, thinly sliced
Combine the honey, water, five spice, ginger and vinegar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then immediately remove from heat. Cool to room temperature. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer or cheesecloth into a large canning jar. Add the slices of blood orange and then cover with a lid. Let infuse, refrigerated, for a minimum of 24 hours before using. Store refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.
For a slight twist, try serving the mix over ice or mixed with a splash of soda or for medicinal purposes (grown-ups only of course) mix in your favourite vodka. I’m tempted to try this as a hot toddy myself.
Some other great flu fighting tidbits when it comes to citrus:
- Grapefruit juice will retain 98% of its Vitamin C for up to a week when juiced and stored in the fridge.
- Adding fresh lemon juice to tea can help increase the absorption of antioxidants.
- Some hot water and lemon juice in the morning can neutralize acid in your body and stimulate the immune system to fight infections.
- A quarter of a Pomelo contains over 100% of your daily Vitamin C.
- Combining lemon, honey and ginger into hot water can aid in relieving a sore throat.
I’m not much of a cold weather person but living in Canada it’s hard to escape. Adding a little citrus to my day, whether in the form of this Sunkist Five Spice–Blood Orange Shrub recipe or one of the other boosts above will ensure I spend less time in bed.
Sunkist recipe and image reprinted with permission. Recipe courtesy Kathy Casey Food Studios®