by Caroline

It has been six days now since this cold clamped its vise grip on my head and chest, six days of trying to wash it way with gallons of tea, at first, and then just hot water with lemon and honey. Usually by this point in a cold, I’m tired of the drink and craving a milkshake (even though I know it’ll bring on a coughing fit) but not this time. Yesterday, I even hauled a pile of cookbooks into bed with me to read up on lemons, and found a chapter dedicated to them in the incomparable Laurie Colwin’s More Home Cooking. After detailing the various delicious things that can be made more delicious with the addition of a lemon (roast chicken; any kind of fish; lentils; salads; rice pudding; pound cake; biscuits), she writes:

“And when you have run out of things to cook with lemons, you can use them as medicine. When you or a loved one is sick with the flu, a very good remedy is

Hot Lemonade

For this you need one big water glass. Into the bottom of it put 1 large spoonful of honey and 1 cinnamon stick. Slice half a lemon into thin slices and put those in, too. Now squeeze the remaining lemon half, and 1 more lemon, and put the juice of both into the glass. Fill with hot water, stir, and serve to the sick person with the glass wrapped in a napkin.”

I can’t say it has cured me, but the cinnamon stick is a nice change of pace, and one I’m sticking with as I lie in bed, re-reading the rest of Colwin’s lovely book.