FAVORITE USE(S): To provide mild, pleasant stimulation as a delicious, health supporting tea
FAVORITE TIME(S): Any time of day, especially in the morning
Galangal is probably one of my favorite plants. It is incredibly good for physical, mental and spiritual health, and is also a wonderful culinary tool. Galangal tea is absolutely delicious, subtle and spicy, and if you are able to find fresh galangal root it makes an absolutely amazing, warm and slightly spicy addition to stir fries, curries and rice dishes.
Kaempferia galangal root is used as a hallucinogen in New Guinea, and is also employed by many peoples to treat sore throats, inflammation and infections. It has been used all over the world for centuries for its stimulating and tonic properties, and can also instantly reduce fever and indigestion.
Other than the fact that galangal root contains a very high amount of essential oil, very little is known about why this plant is so powerful. The inhabitants of Mount Hagen, Papua New Guinea use the rhizome as a hallucinogen, and is said to produce hallucination without side-effects. They also use it as an aphrodisiac, euphoric, and creator of pleasant and prophetic dreams. I find that consuming large quantities of galangal tea allows for great clarity of thought and occasional minor visual alterations.
Aleister Crowley was even said to favor the combination of galangal root and alpine turmeric to create deeply meditative states as well as to induce powerful vivid dreams. Although galangal root is not one of the primary dream herbs, it makes a powerful (and pleasant tasting) addition to any dream tea blend. Galangal root effects also have the added bonus of being very mildly stimulating, offering an increase in awareness without any of the edginess of caffeine. It is even perfectly easy to fall asleep after drinking a cup of galangal tea.
HOW TO PREPARE/RECIPE: Galangal root, when dried, is best used as part of a tea. Simply boil 1 oz of the root matter in 3 cups of water for 5 minutes. Then remove the galangal and allow it to dry. The root can be re-used as many as 20-30 times to make tea. Galangal tea has an amazing flavor, either sweetened or not.
Another, more potent way to consume dried galangal root is to grind it in to a powder and consume in capsules or as part of a tea. The effects of this blend are significantly more noticeable. Finally, fresh galangal root can be used as a vegetable in stir fries, soups, rice dishes, and so forth.