In Siberia, the custom is to grind Chaga into a fine powder and mix into their food before serving. Here we will focus on doing a very simple extraction by simmering our Wild Chaga Mushrooms in water producing a Juice-Tea. Some people, for convenience like throw ithe Chaga Juice-Tea into juice and smoothies. The flavor is rather weak, and won't alter the taste of whatever it's being combined with.
Here's some anecdotal information linking Chaga to better health and longer life expectancy:
As mentioned above there are tribal people living in Siberia that use Chaga in their daily diets with average liefspans 85-110 years old, while another nearby community does not use Chaga and their average lifespan was 1/2 or 50 years old
Where does our Wild Chaga come from?
Our Chaga comes from forests here in Massachusetts.
Here at Berkshire Grain we collect small quantities of Chaga, which is dried within 24 hours, chunked and packaged. We do not wholesale and warehouse Chaga for several months at a time ~ Our packages contain enough Chaga for approximately 4-6 weeks. We think this insures that the Chaga you receive from us is of the best quality available. Shipping is always free!
Here is an image of Chaga we recently harvested in Western Massachusetts.
Chaga is naturally occurring on several varieties of Birch Trees. Everyone is familiar with White Birch Trees, however we prefer Chaga from the variety of Birches with the "Silvery Bark" for it's higher quality and concentration of nutrients.
Before we go on ~ a quick word about "respect and sustainability". As you may already realize ~ naturally occurring, means just that ~ Like many things found on our planet -- there is no endless supply of Birch Trees and Chaga. In recent years we've been witnessing many inexperienced people going out into the woods and think nothing of "trophy hunting" Chaga. We call it this because often people will bring the Chaga home and not properly handle it or worse yet......just forget about it ~ what a waste. Even more commonly we find trees where all the Chaga has been removed leaving the Tree in a critical state, and the time it takes for Chaga to re-occur is too late. A trained forager will know how to safely remove the Chaga and leave Chaga behind for the Tree to survive.
- Anti-Oxidants -- one of the richest sources
- Anti-inflammatory -- relief from some long-term inflammatory conditions
- Helps promote healthy skin
- Adaptagen -- helps the body deal with stress differently
- Supports cell structure
- Proven Cancer Fighter in combnation with other treatments
The following reference an Interview with Cass Ingram MD goes into some depth of scientific and medical explanations of how Chaga works in our bodies -- we strongly suggest you read the article.
How to prepare Chaga Juice/Tea.
We offer the following Quick Brew Method -- Dr Ingram in the above link offers some longer/slow brew methods
It is our experience that both methods are effective.
What you will need:
Stainless Steel pot
Glass Container to store 1/2 gallon of liquid (can be divided into 2 containers - do not use plastic)
1/2 gallon clean water (should be filtered at the minimum)
4-6 Chaga chunks (18-20 grams)
Tea Infuser, optional
Bring the water to a boil in the stainless steel pot; reduce to simmer and drop the Chaga into the pot - simmer, while covered for 20-30 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for 15 minutes or more, then pour liquid into your glass container
* tip: a funnel lined with a coffee filter helps if you didn't use a Tea Infuser.
Save the just used Chaga pieces in a container to use a 2nd time. You may choose to save all the twice used Chaga chunks, and use all at once to brew one last 1/2 gallon batch of Chaga Juice.
1-2 8oz glasses daily