On Monday November 21, a glorious fall afternoon, Life Alive Central Square welcomed Liat and her partner Alon from Tamim Teas for an intriguing symposium on medicinal mushrooms.
Liat shared that her love of medicinal mushroom tea began when a friend of hers became ill, and was directed to drink Reishi tea medicinally. She immediately was off-put by the taste of the mushroom, and began brewing her own teas using locally grown produce to achieve a more desirable flavor; and she did just that.
During the event at Life Alive, Liat spoke about the benefits of each mushroom type she has used, and offered the group a sample of all her delicious concoctions, starting with Reishi.
Reishi has been a culturally significant mushroom in many parts of the world, and has the most research to back its medicinal values of common mushrooms used. It can be used to treat anxiety and insomnia, and is proven to have anti tumor, anti inflammatory, and blood thinning properties.
Reishi, along with other mushrooms, leaves a bitter taste when simply made with water, so Liat created tea blends to mask the taste and make the mushroom enjoyable and refreshing. Those who attended the symposium were given the Tamim Teas’ “Reishi Delight” to sample. This blend consisted of honeybush, cinnamon, and orange peel paired with a refreshing red rooibos. The taste was beautifully spicy, with a natural sweetness.
Reishi was also used in a drink called “Reishi Autumn Delight” which was served chilled with apple juice, apple cider vinegar, and agave nectar. Guests found the drink to be deliciously sweet, with the taste resembling apple cider.
Liat then went on to discuss her experience with shitake. Shitake is used in Japan as a complimentary aid for cancer treatment, is rich in antioxidants, and has anti-tumor properties.
The company has a brew called “Shitake Uplift” consisting of ginger, lemongrass, lemon peel, and a blend of red and green rooibos. The taste was very earthy, and blended delicately with lemon. They also brewed the Shitake Uplift with ginger and jasmine Kombucha to give it a wild, tangy, and refreshing taste.
The next mushroom explored was chaga. Chaga, when consumed regularly can boost energy. It is only wild harvested, and like any mushroom, needs to be harvested sustainably so growth continues. Liat brought a couple samples of chaga mixed with chai which brought a sweetness and spice to the drink.
The last mushroom discussed was the non traditional lion’s share. This mushroom is not found as frequently in culture for medicinal purposes, but Liat had a few brews which shared the same medicinal properties as the others. Tamim Teas has a “Lion’s Share Winter Strength” brew which the group sampled with coconut milk and date syrup.
Liat hopes that her company brings a simplicity and joy to consuming mushrooms, and allow customers to reap the value while still enjoying the brew. By the end of the event, guests were ecstatic about their experience with Liat, and walked away with a new, beneficial knowledge on mushrooms in general.