Masala and Ginger Chai
Masala and Ginger Chai would be an everyday drink in our household if my husband had his way, but it is more like once a week. I feel like it is way too heavy to have every day! Especially the way he likes it. I actually prefer a Yorkshire Tea or English Breakfast. Don’t get me wrong, I do like masala and ginger chai but I have it once a month at the most. It feels like a full meal for me.
I think it is an everyday drink in a lot of asian households to be honest and It isn’t difficult to understand why. This tea is aromatic, spicy, sweet and delicious. You can adjust it in so many ways and it can be as light or as heavy as you would like it. My husband, like my late father in law likes his tea brewed for twenty minutes. (Ain’t nobody got time..). Haha! Actually I just tend to put it on and leave it and then just go in there before it is done and make the rest of his breakfast.
Masala and Ginger chai is particularly delicious and warming in Autumn/Winter. It is always in winter when I truly appreciate the dry days of summer. Not the super hot ones. I can leave them. The ones when summer is dying down. When it is dry and warm outside and you can go out for a nice wander without suffocating/dehydrating and shrivelling up like a prune. Actually I think winter is more of a shriveller..Yes I know, that is not a word but you get my drift, right? The other thing about Winter is that the cold always catches me by surprise. Yes I know it is obvious that it will get cold but I always feel like it is so sudden. One day it is dry and moderate and the next day, I am freezing my toes off.
Actually my father in law always said that chai cools you down, so maybe it is better in Summer?
We will just say, it is great in any weather, so pop it on the stove and enjoy!
- 3 teabags or 3 heaped tsp black tea
- 1 mug of water
- 1 inch cinnamon stick
- 5 cardamon
- 3 cloves
- Pinch of black pepper
- 1 inch ginger grated
- 2 mugs of milk (of your choice - we use either full fat or semi skimmed)
- 1-5 tsp sugar
- Add the teabags and water to a deep pan with the cinnamon stick, cloves, pepper and ginger.
- Slightly crush the cardamom pods and them in with the rest.
- Heat the water over a high heat, until it comes to a boil and is a dark amber in colour.
- Immediately add the milk and sugar.
- Allow to come to a boil and reduce heat right down.
- Continue to simmer for a further 10 - 20 minutes depending on how deep you like the flavours to be.
- Sieve into 2 mugs.
The sugar in this recipe is optional but with this tea, I would advise that you do use sugar because it works well with the spices and balances it well. How much you use is up to you. For syrupy sweet tea, like the type that is sold in chai shops, I would opt for quite a bit and just have it once in a while! You can also use evaporated milk over whatever you would normally go for. This works pretty well! If you do use evaporated milk, I would cut down the simmer time by at least 10 minutes. The longer you boil after the milk has gone in, the deeper the flavours of the chai. I prefer mine to be boiled for around 10 minutes and as such I use less water in mine. My husband swears by 20 minutes. You can make the tea with more water and less milk but this is how I make it for my husband. For my parents I would use 2 mugs of water and 1/2 mug milk instead as they prefer a watery mixture. It depends on your taste! For Ginger Chai - use the same recipe but eliminate all other spices bar the ginger. Add 1/2 inch extra ginger. You can also grate a big batch of ginger and keep it in the freezer and use when you need it. For Cardamom Chai - Use the same method as above but eliminate all other flavours but the cardamom. Use 8-9 cardamom pods slightly crushed.