The citrus smell of Lemon Grass or Tanglad, in our dialect, is normally used in cooking, because it gives out a lemon smell and taste it is often use in Tinolang Manok and Sinampalukang Manok . They often grow unknowingly, and appears almost in every vacant lot there is. Scientific name: Cymbopogon citratus, the other name for lemon grass is Citronella, and citronella is widely use for insect repellent. It is one of the most effective organic repellent in the market, it used by infusing the lemon grass oil with other oils by steaming it. the picture shown here, is the process of brewing the lemon grass tea. (This is based on my aunt’s recipe) By simply having a palm full of Lemon grass (ALL, leaves and stalk) clean the stalk of the lemon grass, this is to make sure that there are no dirt in your tea, in a big boiling pot, place 1 liter of water with the cleaned lemon grass. bring to a boil, or wait until the liquid turns to brown or amber brown. You may serve it hot or cold or as desired.
lemon grass is not only used in cooking and insect repelling but it is also served as an afternoon tea. Brewing the tea is easy, a handful of fresh lemon grass leaves are place in a big pot with a liter of water and it is brought to a boil or until the liquid is turned into a shade of dark brown or amber brown. This is a perfect substitute to your usual afternoon tea, a dash of honey and lemon will satisfy any tea lovers out there. it can served as hot tea or cold iced tea.
picture above shown, the finish product. Can be served hot or cold as desired.
the fact that it is a very versatile herb (according to many Asian Chefs and American Asian-cooking chefs) its benefits is also as versatile as the herb itself. I, first hand, use this as my replacement tea (I have replaced Earl Grey Tea with Tanglad tea because it is way cheaper than my usual tea) and I have observed many improvements- in the least, my head aches have decreased drastically in my continuous use for 2 weeks.
Upon, researching for this topic, I’ve come to think… WHY WONT I ASK MY MOM?!~ you see, my mom is such an avid drinker of coffee and tea. But nowadays she prefers tea, as a result we buy bags and bags of tea. Then she noticed that she has been having bowel problems since she started on tea, I suspected that it may be due to her menopausal stage-where she will be irate, blood pressure spiking up, and all her “pagbabawas” are making her miserable. A couple days have passed and her sister (makes her my aunt) is a passive advocate of ALL ORGANIC AND PRO-FILIPINO products, she made a brew of tanglad tea and had my mom drank it. the first few days of drinking, I’ve seen her having less bowel problems, and she’s more happy (which makes me a happy kid, no more major tantrums for her). the amount of stress that she under goes everyday during her work, might have contributed to it, but now she’s drinking tanglad tea, she’s more…optimistic towards her work.
there are more benefits to tanglad tea than the ones I’ve stated above, tanglad tea is believed to cure gastrointestinal problems stomachaches, diarrhea, gas, bowel spasms, vomiting, fever, the flu, and headaches. Tanglad is not only used in the Philippines, but also in other Asian country like China where it is used to treat colds and rheumatism. It is useful with respiratory infections such as sore throats, laryngitis and fever and helps prevent spreading of infectious diseases.
And recently, studies have shown that Tanglad tea is effective at killing cancer cells.
This has been reportedly tested with positive results in Israel. The story goes that it all began when researchers at Ben Gurion University (BGU) of the Negev discovered last year that the lemon aroma in herbs like lemon grass kills cancer cells in vitro, while leaving healthy cells unharmed. It claimed that a drink with as little as one gram of lemon grass contains enough citral to prompt the cancer cells to commit suicide in the test tube. The BGU investigators checked the influence of the citral on cancerous cells by adding them to both cancerous cells and normal cells that were grown in a petri dish. While the citral killed the cancerous cells, the normal cells remained unharmed. The success of their research led them to the conclusion that herbs like tanglad containing citral may be consumed as a preventative measure against certain cancerous cells.