My approach is as simple as it gets. I thinly slice or julienne enough ginger depending on the level of warmth/spiciness I seek. I usually use about 10 to 15 round slices in a ~250ml teacup for a lot of warmth. Employing a simple, everyday porcelain teacup, I place the ginger slices on the bottom of the cup while the tea leaves go into the strainer. After getting the desired brew, I remove the strainer and let the tea stand for about 3 minutes to let the ginger release its essence.
I prefer to use a black, a red, or a highly roasted oolong tea for the simple reason that they don't get stewed easily in boiling water. The hotter the water is, the more potent the ginger taste becomes. Earl Grey tea is also a personal favorite for this purpose as the bergamot oil gives an added soothing effect.
After finishing a cup, it is time for a Pig in a Blanket. I cover myself (the pig) with a thick blanket and go to sleep to sweat out the cold.
Sandy Bushberg, the publisher of T Ching who is also a qualified herbalist, suggested these natural remedies for cold to me:
"In addition to drinking a lot of tea, you might want to consider an alcohol tincture of echinacea and elderberry. A teaspoon 4 times a day can help. Also, eyebright and osha are excellent as well for helping to deal with the congestion. In addition, every night before bed, you can cut up a few garlic cloves into swallowable sizes, coat them with olive oil or honey, and swallow them raw."