A weed, that isn’t just a weed! Rosebay willowherb (Chamerion angustifolium) is a healthy tea that is known for a century – Ivan Chai.
Ivan Chai – a fermented herbal tea made from wild willowherb (Epilobium angustifolium). Fermented willowherb (Epilobium angustifolium) tea was a traditional Russian hot beverage for hundreds of years before it was nearly universally replaced by Indian and Chinese black and green teas. With its rich composition of minerals and vitamins, willowherb makes for a healthy, caffeine-free tea that does not contain harmful uric acid or oxalate. Willowherb tea is also a mild sedative. “Ivan Chai” is an excellent replacement for imported teas.
Willowherb contains micronutrients—trace minerals that are good for the blood—such as iron, titanium, nickel, copper, manganese, lithium, molybdenum, as well as boron, potassium, calcium, sodium, and more. It contains bioflavonoids, glutinous substances, pectin, and tannins and it is also rich in both vitamin C (containing more than is found in citruses) and vitamin B. Interestingly, the willowherb growing in the northern regions of the world contains much more vitamin C than that growing in southern regions.
Ivan Chai is used for pain and swelling (inflammation), fevers, tumors, wounds, and enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia, BPH).
How to gather and ferment the leaves of wild willowherb to get Ivan Chai? Wait for my next post. I will post easy step by step instruction later on.