In the winter I always have a batch of this chai concentrate on hand to create a warming elixir. Simply mix it with equal parts fresh almond milk (or milk of your choice) before heating to serve! I like to keep it caffeine free for an after dinner treat, (all of the spices are digestive tonics) however; you can add a bag of organic black tea to the mix as it brews if desired.
David Wolfe refers to Chaga as “King of the Medicinal Mushrooms” It is truly a remarkable mushroom that grows on living birch trees. It is an adaptogen which is a metabolic regulator that increases an organism’s ability to adapt to environmental factors and resist stress. It is also known for its cancer fighting and immune boosting properties and is known to tonify the digestive tract, promote longevity and protect DNA. It is readily found, ground, in most natural food and herb stores.
- 4 cups of water
- 1 tsp. ground chaga mushroom
- 1/2 tsp. whole fennel seeds
- 6 slices of fresh ginger
- 2 whole star anise
- 4 whole cloves
- 4 whole cardomom pods, crushed
- 1/8 tsp. finely grated nutmeg
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract or a pinch of vanilla powder
- a pinch of freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup maple syrup or honey
Bring all ingredients except for the maple syrup to a boil. Turn the heat down to simmer for 1/2 an hour. Add the maple syrup or honey. Pour into a 1 litre mason jar along with all of the spices. The flavours will continue to intensify if you keep the spices in with the concentrate. Allow to cool before storing in the refrigerator.
In a small saucepan combine equal parts chai concentrate and almond milk. Heat to serve!
Note: see the Nut Nog recipe for almond milk instructions.