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Jamu - The Indonesian Elixir

Jamu - What is Jamu and how to make it, Bawah Reserve, Indonesia

Made from a variety of locally grown herbs, drinking a daily dose of Jamu is one of the most popular and widespread rituals in Indonesia. This herbal drink has been known to increase immunity, detox your gut, and replenish your body with antioxidants, helping to give you a natural boost.

Here we bring you the lowdown on this Indonesian anti-inflammatory elixir health drink and we give you a recipe so you can make it yourself.


What is Jamu?

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While you may not have heard of Jamu, it is an ancient Indonesian traditional herbal drink and
according to Wikipedia, it’s been around for 1300 years. Traditionally, it’s the females in the family that mix the tonics and pass down the recipes to the next generation. A recent trend for health drinks like Kombucha and Rosella and drinks with adaptogens has resurrected the interest in Jamu.

 

What is Jamu made of?

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Jamu Kunyit Asam as the traditional format is known is a turmeric tonic that is made of five
main ingredients: turmeric palm sugar, ginger, tamarind, and water.

Tumeric is also included in the list of official adaptogens  - natural herbs or roots that can help the body adapt to stress by balancing our hormones.  Adding these to a drink is the best way to take adaptogens...

 

How to make Jamu?

Jamu Kunyit Asam - Yield 700ml /6-10 portions
Ingredients:
80 grams of fresh ginger root, sliced thinly
175 grams of tamarind pulp
90 grams (1/4 cup) honey
1 2.5cm (1 inch) piece of cinnamon stick, cracked
5  black peppercorns
3 lime leaves 
3/4 Tablespoon turmeric powder
1 litre water
Method:
 Place all ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil
 Reduce heat to simmer
 Skim and discard the foam that rises to the top
 Gently stir and skim again 
 Simmer very gently for 90 minutes
 Allow to cool
 Strain through a fine strainer 
 Refrigerate and keep for up to seven days 
 Serve warm or cold
 As a variation, add pineapple and orange juice at time of serving to achieve a
less assertive flavour. 

 

 

What is Jamu good for?

There are so many health benefits to drinking Jamu. Tamarind, turmeric, and ginger in
particular are renowned for their numerous health benefits so you can imagine when these
three are combined, it is a powerful, healthy potion that is created.

  • Tamarind:

    Antioxidant, good for stomach aches and constipation, weight loss, and managing sugar levels.

  • Turmeric:

    Anti-inflammatory and antioxidants can help depression, heart disease and arthritis.

  • Ginger:

    Anti-bacterial, germs and inflammation, digestive health, and cramps.

  • Honey:

    Lowers blood pressure, and heart and eye health due to antioxidants. 


What does Jamu taste like and how do you drink it?

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Jamu tastes quite bitter. Some people choose to add more honey or fresh juice to sweeten it up.

You can drink Jamu hot or cold – however you prefer.


How much Jamu should I drink?

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Jamu should not be consumed in large volumes. A small glass a day will keep the doctor away. We serve a shot with breakfast to all our guests to start the day healthily.


What are the different types of Jamu?

Jamu simply means herb – and there are many different versions of this. Often tailored to
ease certain medical conditions. Indonesia Tourism lists 10 different types  in their feature:
Why not experiment by adding some herbs and spices to create new flavours?

 

 

Or if you are coming to Bawah be sure to book our Jamu-making Workshop :

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In our Jamu-making class you will discover the ancient techniques of Jamu creation, and prepare
your own using organic ingredients, and then enjoy your hard work.

Do send us photos of your own Jamu creations and stay well!

 

 

 

 

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