I wasn’t sure whether or not add this at all, really. It’s just chopped licorice root, no finery included, and I didn’t exactly buy it because I thought it would be awesome. So originally I wasn’t planning on adding it, but then I thought, ‘hey, it’s still an herbal tisane.’ Anything goes, right? So here we are, then. Nature’s own cough medicine.
And boy do I need it.
Anyway, the thing that finally swayed me into posting about it is the fact that I’ve cold-steeped a bit in a mug in the fridge overnight and I thought I’d mention some differences between the hot and cold version.
Licorice root is naturally unbelievably sweet. If memory serves me right it has a higher sweetness index (or whatever you call it) than ordinary sugar, but that’s just off the top of my head. Brewed in boiling water it steeps incredibly quickly. I just make it directly in the mug, and as soon as you’ve poured water on you’ve already got a flavourful cup, if you can drink it that hot.
As mentioned, I made a cup hot the other day, one for me, one for the boyfriend. The latter then started questioning how many pounds of sugar I had dumped in it. The answer of course was none. It was incredibly sweet, and the question posed to me actually describes the flavour better than anything else I can come up with. Granted, I had probably used a measure of root larger than fitted the cup, so it was relatively strong. Towards the bottom of the cup it also got an additional note of bark to it which made the sweetness more bearable.
I wouldn’t say it was super-pleasant. ’Nature’s own cough mixture!’ is what I kept telling myself. I can’t say if it helped. Maybe a little. I think, compared to last night where I didn’t have any, it must have, because I’ve been keeping the boyfriend up for a good part of the night, I think.
So, overnight I’ve had a cup cold-brewing in the fridge, which I’ve drank this morning and the difference is remarkable. Having learned from my mistake, I’ve used a little less root, which may account for some of it. At any rate, it’s not nearly as cloyingly sweet and it has a lot more of that bark note.
I like the cold-brewed cup a LOT better than the hot, and I hope that it will actually give me a little reprieve tonight at bedtime.
The boyfriend seemed to like it a lot better, in general, than I do, which is actually funny because I’m usually the one with the sweet tooth, and I’m considering make this part of the Standard Panel for medicinal purposes. (For the record, I know this sort of stuff can’t replace real medicine, but for your average garden variety virus infection, it does the job well enough for me.)