Friday, September 30, 2011

the spicy chai blues

spicy chai latte autumn drink 001

I have been experiencing a chai obsession the last week or so. Grey cool weather naturally makes me crave creamy, aromatic drinks. Earl grey has been a long time favorite, and London Fogs have always served me well too, but I think that this year will be the autumn of chai.

I've been brewing large batches at home so I can have a cup to take to work and a cup when I get home. Do you ever make chai at home? What mixture of spices is your favourite?

Here's what usually works for me (although sometimes I add extra spice):

Masala Chai

Fill a small pot with three cups water and bring to a simmer. Add to your pot 4 heaping teaspoons black tea leaves (I use a basic Darjeeling) and add the following, according to your tastes:

- a 3 inch long cinnamon stick
- 5 cardamom pods
- a 1.5-2 inch piece of ginger, roughly chopped
- 4 peppercorns
- 6 cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated (or 1/2 tsp ground) nutmeg
(I am usually too lazy, but you could grind these all together before adding to your pot)

- sugar, to taste (approximately a couple teaspoons)

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and slowly stir in two cups milk and allow this to simmer for a few minutes. (Or as long as you want! -but your volume will decrease)

Pour through a strainer and into your mugs. Serves 2-4.

If you want to be extra fancy, traditionally chai would be poured from one mug to another, back and forth in a steady, tall stream until the tea is frothy. mmm... froth.

spicy chai latte autumn drink 003

spicy chai latte autumn drink 002

spicy chai latte autumn drink 004


elizabeth said...

I want this right now, the grey Montreal weather this morning is perfect for chai.

Mary Hudson said...

I suggest you go for it. I'm about to make some! I wonder what a drop of vanilla would do....