Pau D’Arco Tea

11 01 2010

When I visited my friend Michael in Los Angeles, not only did he teach me about Kombucha, but also about Pau D’Arco tea.

Pau d’Arco is a natural herb retrieved from the inner bark of the Tabebuia Avellanedae or Tabebuia Impetiginosa, known as taheebo.  Pau d’Arco, also known as ipe roxo or sometimes lapacho (its derivative), has been used for centuries by the Indio tribes of South America, as well as the ancient Incas and Aztecs. They say it is beneficial in treating cancer and also Candida.

Michael was brewing this up in a crockpot because the real thing is literally the shaved bark of the tree and takes a long time to brew. (Beware of Pau D’arco in tea bags, it may only be made from sawdust.) It tastes very earthy with a hint of vanilla. It is good served hot, cold or made into a chai. You can buy the bark at Check it out at my links section.

Michael makes his tea by adding four handfuls of Pau D’arco bark and 1 handful of Cat’s Claw Bark (which you can also find at Mountain Rose herbs) to a gallon of water in a crockpot. Then he brings it up to a boil and allows it to simmer overnight or at least for one day. (He sometimes simmers it for more than a day but I did not find that necessary.) You may need to top it up with more water. Then strain the tea and serve.

Michael’s Pau D’arco Chai

This is a great chai that is nondairy and only lightly sweetened. You can adjust the amount of spices to your taste.

4 cups hot Pau D’arco tea

1/2 – 1 inch slice ginger

small spoonful of cardamom seeds

1 piece of cinnamon stick

3 cloves

1 handful raw almonds

few gratings of nutmeg

stevia or agave to taste

coconut butter

Place all the ingredients in a heavy duty Vitamix blender, except the coconut butter and sweetener. Blend on high for a minute. Pour tea through strainer and push on spices to extract all the flavor. Put flavored tea back in blender and add about a tablespoon of coconut butter and sweetener to taste.  Blend on high until slightly frothy. Serve hot.




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