Old fashioned salabat

I have a cough and a sore throat today, so I called in sick and made myself a ginger tea, or what Filipinos call, “salabat.”

Salabat is a strong and pungent tea made by steeping chopped up ginger in boiling water. I like to chop my ginger into really thin slices so the ginger goodness gets into the hot water but it’s not too hard to strain afterward.

Mixed with honey for a bit of sweetness, it’s the perfect way to cheer you up while you recover.


1 medium-sized ginger root, chopped
1 liter boiling water
Honey, to taste
1 tablespoon lemon juice (optional)


  1. Chop the ginger into thin slices. (Other recipes would have you mince them, which is fine, but I prefer to have my ginger easier to strain out once the salabat is ready.)
  2. Put the ginger slices into boiling water, and simmer over medium heat for 15 minutes. The water’s colour should range between light to honey brown by the time it’s ready.
  3. Pour into a mug and flavour to taste with honey. Should you find the flavour too strong, the juice of one lemon should neutralise some of it. (But the joy of salabat is also comes with the burning sensation as you drink it, so I wouldn’t recommend too much lemon.

And that’s what I do!  What are some of your favourite natural sore throat or cough remedies?

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