Spring Tune-up: Turmeric, Lemon Juice/ Green Tea/Peppermint Tea & Apple Juice Cooler

Updated: Mar 9, 2021

Years ago when I worked for a large grocery chain in NYC, I bought a sort of trendy canned drink that contained organic peppermint tea, organic green tea, turmeric, lemon juice, and I think, cane sugar as sweetener. It was tiny, like six ounces tiny, and cost $6.00, and that was ten years ago! I thought to myself, I can make this even better for a fraction of the cost and it won't be sitting in an aluminum can and I can make a gallon at a time and bring it to work in a glass bottle to drink on my break. Turns out, the only empty bottle I had in my apartment was an empty salad dressing bottle. So, I made my first half-gallon or gallon of this super refreshing, bright yellow turmeric/apple/lemon/peppermint/green tea drink, poured myself a portion into my empty, clean, glass salad dressing bottle and took my drink with me on my way to work. I got thirsty on the subway and took out the bottle to have some. As I was drinking, there were three visitors to NYC from.....Ireland, maybe? sitting directly across from me on the subway. They were trying so hard to be polite as they stared at me drinking what they thought was salad dressing. They looked as if they weren't breathing, and they all half-smiled while they elbowed each other as if to say, "Look at that gal drinking salad dressing, will ya?" My stop was coming up, so I took one last swig, put the salad dressing bottle in my backpack, smiled back at them as I got off the train as if to say, “You should try drinking salad dressing too!“

Here it is:

Ingredients: (organic if possible)

1 quart unfiltered apple juice

12-14 ripe lemons, juiced

2 tablespoons turmeric powder

6 peppermint or spearmint tea bags or 1/2 cup loose peppermint tea

3 green tea bags or decaf green tea bags or 1/4 cup loose green tea

2 quarts filtered water, heated to boiling

Optional: spearmint sprigs for garnish

Juice your lemons. While you are juicing lemons, start 2 quarts of filtered water heating up for brewing your peppermint and green tea. Back to the lemons: roll them first on your cutting board and that will help them produce more juice. I like this glass citrus juicer because it strains out the seeds and has a pour spout and it was inexpensive.

In a gallon glass bottle, add your powdered turmeric and then add the lemon juice. Don't use bottled lemon juice--you really need the fresh lemon juice here.

This is 8 cups water heated to boiling, then heat turned off then add your loose tea or bagged teas. If you need to go caffeine-free, no worries, just skip the green tea or use decaffeinated green tea. Let the peppermint tea leaves steep for 5 minutes or more, while you juice the lemons, then strain the tea and cool it down in the fridge. I strain it into 2 4-cup glass Pyrex measuring cups, or you can use a glass jar that you have rinsed with hot water first.

After you have strained and cooled down the tea, add it to your gallon bottle, then add 1 quart unfiltered apple juice. You should have: 4 cups apple juice, about 1.5 cups lemon juice, 8 cups tea, and the 2 tablespoons turmeric powder. Put the top on and give it a few shakes to mix everything together, and taste. If it is too sour, add more apple juice. Let everything chill together for a couple of hours, then pour and enjoy. Ahhhhh- such a great drink to have in the fridge. You can garnish it with a stem of fresh spearmint or peppermint if you can get some at your local farmer's market. Always shake the bottle before you pour it since the turmeric will tend to settle on the bottom. And when you buy your turmeric powder, go for a deep golden-orangish-yellow color, and a very earthy smell. Great stuff!


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