I have long been recommending this brew to my friends, having first discovered it in my second year of acting training. I think that the recipe I began with, came from both my voice teacher and another actor friend, but I have since developed it to suit my taste and needs.
During my second year I lost my voice whilst playing Queen Margaret in Richard III, a gift of a role, and one that required a lot of vocal energy. This was the ‘Bridge Project’, our final performance of the year, before we started the round of public performances and trying to secure an agent. An important performance – Margaret is a deeply wounded and bitter woman, who has a lot of angry ranting to do – so needless to say, losing my voice was not ideal.
However, between resting my voice as much as possible, low, gentle humming to protect and warm my vocal chords, plenty of water and drinking this concoction throughout the day, my voice returned to almost full strength for the duration of the performances.
There is no substitute for taking care of your vocal health, through drinking lots of water, and having a good warm-up/warm down practice whenever you are using your voice for more than simply day to day conversation. When ill, resting your voice and drinking plenty of water becomes even more vital, something we as a culture can be quick to ignore. As a supplementary measure however, this drink is a brilliant medicine. Packed full of antioxidants, the natural antibiotic of garlic, the antiseptic of honey, and clove which offers a very mild analgesic quality – this is a totally natural way to boost your body’s recovery. I swear by it, whipping up a batch to drink, any time I find my voice beginning to go, or when I have a cold which is moving towards my throat and chest.
Not dis-similar to a hot and sour broth or a ‘Bel Canto Tea’, this is definitely an acquired taste, but I have grown used to it, as has my husband who actually enjoys the flavour now, and I find it does the trick. So, should you wish to try it, here is the recipe.
Cassie’s Voice-loss Brew
- 1 and a half lemons
- Rosehip Tea bag
(You can also use green tea, but as this is caffeinated, it is better to go for a non-caff option,)
- Roughly an inch and a half Root Ginger
- 1 large clove of garlic (you can use two if you can stomach it, but it does somewhat dominate the flavour)
- A twist of Salt and Black Pepper
- Cinnamon Stick
- Optional for flavour – Star Anise, 1-2 cloves, fresh thyme or rosemary sprigs. Pick which of these you want to add.
- Peel and slice the ginger, and slice the garlic finely.
- Fill a large saucepan with cold water, and add the rosehip teabag, the ginger, cinnamon stick, garlic, salt and pepper, and if using – the star anise and cloves, rosemary or thyme.
- Squeeze the juice of all the lemons into the pan, and also throw two halves of the husks in too.
- Bring to the boil and then allow to cool until drinkable.
- Remove the lemon husks and discard.
- Take a mugful and add a tablespoon of honey to balance the flavour, more if required, and drink throughout the day as you have need.
The batch will last for a couple of days, if you keep it covered, and you can take a mugful at a time and re-heat in the microwave or on the hob.
I have had good feedback on it’s efficacy from many friends, but as I say, it’s an acquired taste, and I would advise not breathing on anyone immediately after drinking – lol.
I hope that it helps you.