This recipe is made vegan, for no other reason than we like the flavor of the coconut milk. Real dairy tends to curdle in the chaga tea, but we will top it with a bit of whipped cream for extra richness. The amounts of sweetener can be adjusted for taste, and in the early spring when we are tapping the trees, Robert will boil the decoction of chaga in maple sap and not add any sweetener at all, since the maple sap reduces into a light syrup on its own. The amount of coconut milk can also be adjusted for taste and richness, and be sure to look for preservative-free cocnut milk in the can, otherwise it will curdle too. We use roughly ground chaga for this recipe, and Robert accomplishes that by sawing the chaga with a serrated bread knife.
Chaga Frappé makes about 7 cups
6 c. water
3 Tbsp. ground chaga
1 ¼ c. maple syrup
1 c. canned coconut milk
1. Make the chaga decoction by simmering the chaga in the water for 45 minutes. Cool for about 30 minutes and strain out the ground chaga using a coffee filter.
2. Whisk in the maple syrup.
3. In 2 batches, use a blender to blend the coconut milk into the chaga decoction for about 30 seconds. Taste and adjust sweetness or the coconut milk. You can serve it chilled or slightly warmed. Store the frappé in the refrigerator, you may need to give it a vigorous shake to homogenize it before serving.
|Chaga conk on yellow birch|
The ground chaga can be boiled several times. Use the same grounds and add them to 6c. of fresh water, and boil for 45 minutes again. Here is a pic of the same grounds being boiled 6 times, each time in 6 c. of fresh water.