Showing posts with label Beverages. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Beverages. Show all posts

Sunday, 30 August 2009

What is Chai?

Chai is another word for tea used in various countries around the world.

In India, it is known as Masala Chai (Spiced Tea) made from full fat milk, loose tea, tea masala and sugar. Often consumed nearly 4-5 times a day, it is brewed up for a while and then strained through a tea strainer to get a rich, spicy, aromatic smelling beverage that will awaken your senses and make you feel alive.

If you have ever had the chance to walk around India, you will be aware of the Chai Wallah a street vendor on nearly every corner specializing in making tea all day long.

Picture of a Chai Walla
Though not as often consumed in the west due to the time taken to brew, manufacturers have produced alternative masala tea bags or instant tea blends to make it quick and easier for people, though if you ask me it's just not the same.

A typical brew will consist of:
300ml Semi Skimmed
1tsp Loose Tea various brands and blends available
1/4tsp Tea Masala
1tsp Sugar
In a small milk pan, pour in the milk, if using full cream milk water it down slightly.

Add in the loose tea, tea masala, sugar and bring to a boil on a medium heat.

Once the tea comes to a boil and starts to rise, reduce heat and allow to simmer for a few more minutes.
Strain into a cup using a tea strainer and serve hot.

Most tea masalas consist of grounded spices such as cardamoms, nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon and dry ginger. Though you can add extra flavour and aroma, by adding either; a couple of whole green cardamom pods, a small piece of freshly peeled ginger or a couple of fresh mint leaves at the beginning.