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About the author: Wén Xiāng Mógu (闻香蘑菇) is a girl who lives in the lower reaches of Changjiang river in China. She loves writing, photography, eating, and embraces a joyful sense of life! Read her blog at blog.sina.com.cn/u/2012228677 or follow her on Weibo weibo.com/2012228677.
Not long ago, when I went to a supermarket, I would geek out and buy chocolates or bizarre snacks. In 2011, I began to learn how to cook. I bought ingredients from the supermarket and farmer’s market. It dawned upon me that I could cut my costs by spending more wisely. Eating snacks were costly and gave no benefit, only causing me to gain weight.
I caught a cold at the Strawberry Music Festival the other day and ended up with a sore throat. I do not like to take medicine; I prefer home remedies. Pomelo is a nutritious fruit. The skin is effective in relieving cough and dissolving phlegm. The pulp is rich in vitamin C. Honey is an anti-oxidant.
Some Chinese believe pomelo and honey make a great beauty tea, especially beneficial for office ladies who have dark skin, lacking luster as they face their computers throughout the day. It is believed drinking pomelo honey tea can get rid of blemishes from the face and moisten the skin!
In supermarkets, pomelo honey tea runs ¥40-50 ($6-8) for 200-300 grams. Making it at home is money wise!
I brought a pomelo home. As I peeled the skin, I remembered it was Double Ninth Festival, a Chinese lunar calendar holiday. I thought to myself, ‘Why not make some pomelo-honey tea for my mother and grandmother? It’s wonderful to share good beauty and healthy practices with people who love you! My mother and grandmother lived frugally all their life. They always mend their clothes with patches and buy vegetables on sale in the supermarket, but save the best things for their children. If they know the tea is made by me rather than bought from the market, they will be delighted and appreciate the gift even more!
- 1 pomelo (1,000 grams)
- 100 grams rock crystal sugar
- 400 grams honey
- 1 cup water
- Peel the pomelo and julienne half of it. Soak the julienned pomelo peel in salty water to remove its bitter flavor. Discard the unused peel.
- Boil the pomelo peel, pomelo pulp, and rock-crystal sugar with a cup of water for one hour until thick and saucy. Stir throughout otherwise it may stick to the bottom of the pot. Set aside to cool. Add the honey and mix completely.
- Sterilize a glass jar. Fill the jar with the pomelo-honey mixture. Store in refrigerator.
Cooking and eating tips
- Mix a drink! — You can add more sugar and boil it longer to make a pomelo drink mix. To fix yourself a glass, add 2 spoons of the pomelo-honey drink mix to 1 cup of room-temperature water and enjoy.
- Use more pomelo peel — Feel free to use all the pomelo peel, however be warned it may taste more bitter.
- Wait longer for sweeter flavor — After 2 weeks, the sauce will have more sweetness and replace the pomelo’s bitter-sour flavor. Sweet and sour tastes refreshing!
About the Double Ninth Festival
According to the I Ching, nine is a yang number; the ninth day of the ninth month in Chinese lunar calendar is called Double Ninth Festival. Ancient Chinese regarded this day an auspicious day, worth celebrating. There were many activities on this day, such as climbing mountains, gazing at chrysanthemum flowers, drinking chrysanthemum wine, and wearing garlands made from zhūyú (茱萸, Dogwood), some of which are still practiced today. This is a traditional festival frequently canonized by many scholars and poets from different dynasties in China.
Since 九 (nine) is synonymous to the character 久, meaning ‘forever’, Double Ninth Festival also implies longevity. In China, this festival is regarded as a day for the elderly.