This evening's ROOIBOS is a fair trade organic variety that I purchased from Starwest Botanicals . It is tasty, and hard to mess up. Rooibos has a very low volume of tannins, which are what makes tea bitter after brewing too long or getting too hot. So, you can leave your leaves in as long as you want, and it doesn't ruin the taste (at least from my experience!). So, I'll fill an entire press pot of the brew and cup by cup drink the entire thing. This helps me fill a huge craving I have for hot beverages, as well as avoid brewing a second pot of coffee for the day which I often ponder right around mid-afternoon. The ginseng in my cup is from ManRoot , a producer of 100% pure wisconsin ginseng, extracted with organic vodka. Many people think ginseng is just for men and their sex drive. It's good for more than that!
A recent pilot study at the Mayo Clinic showed positive results for cancer patients who used Wisconsin Ginseng to reduce cancer related fatigue. Patients taking large doses of Wisconsin Ginseng showed improvements in overall energy levels, reported higher vitality levels and less interference with activity due to fatigue. They also reported an improvement in overall mental, physical, spiritual and emotional well-being.
There are two real species of ginseng on the market today, Panax (Korean or Chinese) and Panax Quinquefolius (Wisconsin). Since ginseng has been used for thousands of years in China it is easiest to explain the differences in ginseng by using traditional Chinese herbal philosophy.
Wisconsin ginseng is considered a "cooling" type herb and Korean or Chinese ginseng are considered "heating" type herbs. As a cooling herb Wisconsin ginseng is used as a preventitive medicine. Here in the U.S. Wisconsin ginseng is considered an adaptogen. As an adaptogen Wisconsin ginseng acts to normalize body functions and strengthen the immune system and other systems in the body. Over a period of time it builds up energy and maintains the body at a higher level acting to reduce stress and fatigue.
As my energy wanes, and my 6 month old is busy making crazy noises, looking around the room for what else she can grab and put in her mouth, I keep one eye on her, one hand on the keyboard and the other on my hot cup. It's cold and rainy outside and it's been a long day of pickling, chopping, canning, and pressurizing.
Today I canned 5 quarts of green and yellow beans, 4 quarts of mixed pickled veggies (cukes, carrots, red peppers, onions), and 2 half gallon jars of veggie stock (which simmered on the stove all day). I have sweet pickle relish all ready to go for tomorrow. The veggies for that recipe are being iced down and salted overnight in the refrigerator. I also have some "Old South Lime Pickles" being limed and iced overnight in the cold garage. Tomorrow is going to be another busy day. An end to the season's harvest is barely in sight. I'm halfway through my to-do list with squirrel-like anticipation of the winter to come. It's not even mid-October yet, and the temps are hovering at freezing. I see no Indian Summer in the near future. With my eye on the prize, a new pressure canner at hand, and a seemingly interested and entertained 6 month old at arms length, I continue channeling the grandmother/manroot energy and do my best at being matriotic. Organic and Chemical free preservation is my new best friend.