Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Tea: Wolfberry

These days between Christmas and New Years are like the calm before the storm. We've indulged ourselves over the last few days and more than likely, it's to be repeated come New Years Eve. To help bolster our system to cope with the excess, consider the humble Wolfberry.


Wolfberry or Goji Berry is a staple of Chinese traditional medicine and it's one of the most nutrient-rich food you can find. It contains Vitamins B1, B6, C and E, 21 trace elements, 18 amino acids, beta carotene, carotenoids and essential fatty acids. It's said that it can improve vision, enhance the immune system, maintain healthy blood pressure and blood sugars and protect the liver (something that becomes a little more important around new years).

The simplest preparation is in a tea - 1 teaspoon of the berries per cup of boiling water and let it infuse for 5 to 10 minutes before drinking. Once you've finished the tea, don't forget that you can also eat the berries - they have a slight smoky and sweet carrot flavour.

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  1. Hi Haalo,
    This sounds very interesting. How easy is it to buy this tea? Would Essential Ingredient stock it or a chinese food store maybe?

    Is it safe to drink if you are taking some kind of medication?
    Some tea can interefere with medication ie sage.

    Anyhelp would be appreciated. I am interested in searching out this tea.

  2. Hi CB - i have seen this at macro wholefoods but probably the easiest way to buy it is through
    There is advice on the tea itself that if you are taking medicines that it's best to check with your doctor to make sure there aren't any problems.
    Hope that helps!

  3. Thanks Haalo, I'll check it out.:):)

  4. Haalo, what a different kind of tea!

    It's fantastic to know that one can improve all those things about their health by drinking tea.

  5. Its been interesting for me to see the massive promotion this berry has been getting of late, both in health food & other types of shops. To me, its just one of those innumerable Mystery Ingredients that I used to have to consume in Chinese 'medicinal' soups as a child whose name I could never remember :)


  6. Haalo, very useful info on the wolfberries! (As for the Cherry Pie/Tart, it turns out well. I will write about it soon! Thanks for ur advice)

    Cakebaker_cakemaker, you can find these wolfberries in any Chinese Shops. They have small packages as well.

  7. Hi Patricia - it is a bit different and does have quite a unique taste. You can also use the berries in cooking as you would raisins. Might be interesting to experiment.

    Hi Y - it does seem to be the latest wonder food, whether or not it lives up to the hype I suppose we will have to wait and see.

    Thanks Anh - your tart is just gorgeous!

  8. WhItE PoPlaR, thanks for the note.

  9. i've been noticing the goji pop up everywhere!

    my friend sells goji juice and when she first started i hadn't seen goji anywhere. now the dried berries and the juice are in every health food store!!! my green grocer recently started stocking dried berries too.

    according to my friend. dried goji berries have significantly less nutritional value than the fresh ones so if you ever buy the (expensive!) juice make sure you get one pressed from fresh berries not reconstituted from dried ones.

    hadn't thought about using them as a tea though. might have to give it a try.

  10. Hi Haalo
    My name is Salina and I am the owner of I have just started blogging and bumped into your site. Thanks for your pluck on our site :)
    The idea of using wolfberries in pies is an interesting one. I was brought up with wolfberries in Chinese soups and have to say never thought much about them except remembering mum says they're good for eyes!
    If there is someone who is game to create some interesting recipes using wolfberries, I would be happy to offer some free samples of wolfberries in exchange for your recipes (and photos) to be published on our site (crediting to you of course) – you can find tea recipes in our About tea section –
    Email me on if interested.

  11. Thanks Anna - that's great advice on the fresh juice!

    Hi Salina - welcome and I must compliment you on your tea site. I was amazed how quickly my order was delivered and I finally found a tea that I'd been looking for years - so thanks!
    Thanks also for the generous offer - hopefully you'll get some great recipes!

  12. Hi Haalo,
    Just thought I'd let you know my Wolfberry tea arrived this morning.
    I was surprised when I made the tea to find it was a mild taste, unlike some herbal teas which are quick strong tasting.
    The berries out of the tea are very similar to a sultana feel but not sweet.

    Let's see if my eyesight improves over time.:):)

    Thanks again Haalo.

  13. Hi Karen - that's great news. It is really mild I'm with you I'd thought it might have been a strong flavoured tea but it's quite gentle. I think the soaked berries would be good to match with something sweet, I'm thinking of poaching apples and wolfberries, so I get the nutrients into the poaching liquid and the berries soften in the process.

  14. Yes, I think the little red berries would go well with apples. I found them quite a nice treat at the end of the tea.

  15. I read your blog, and bought some goji berries from

    very delicious, i make blended goji berries with apples and it taste great!

    also i got some Premium chrysanthemum tea from Teacuppa so i brew some goji berries and chrysanthemum together. they turned out very tasty! loving it!

  16. Hi Jess - good to hear you've enjoyed the goji berries and I love the idea of mixing them with Chrysantemum.


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