Chai

January 31, 2010

A recipe I found ages ago (not sure where) that I have since committed to memory from making it so many times. None of this powder mix junk, this is the real deal (to an extent…more on that later)

Ingredients
1 1/2 c. Water
10 Cardamom pods
7-8 Whole cloves
1-2 tsp. Fresh ginger, coarsely chopped
Roughly 1 1/2 in. Cinnamon Stick (You don’t need to whip out a ruler, just eyeball it. It won’t kill you)

2/3 c. milk (fat content of your choice)
2 tbsp. Sugar (+/- depending on your preference)

1 tbsp black tea (Darjeeling if you have it). If you just happen to have black tea bags, when it comes time to brew, just rip 2 of them open and use that.

Throw the water, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, and ginger in to a small saucepan, or if you happen to have one, one of these guys, and bring the water to a boil. Once at a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover the pot, and let simmer for 10 or so min (the longer you leave it, the stronger the flavors). IF your pot doesn’t come with a cover, use tin foil and poke some holes with a knife to let the steam out.

When 10 min is up, add the milk and sugar and bring back to a low simmer, stirring to make sure all the sugar is dissolved.

Once at a simmer, turn off the heat and add the tea.  Let steap for 3 min (again you can do it for more or less for stronger or weaker tea respectively).

Then just pour through a sieve and enjoy.

Now, the reason I said it is just kinda the real deal is because as my dad will remind me constantly, REAL authentic Indian Chai has whole black pepper in it. I guess I just never got adventurous enough to try it.

NOTE: You don’t have to follow this recipe exactly. If you happen to prefer the flavor of cloves over cardamom, add more cloves. If you like cinnamon, add a bigger stick. For stronger ginger taste (and I mean WAY stronger) grate the ginger instead of chopping it. This will release more of the juices and you will have a very gingery flavor. Also feel free to experiment with spices. Maybe some whole Coriander or Allspice. Nutmeg? That’s the beauty of cooking, no one is telling you what to do. It’s all just recommendations (unless of course you’re baking, in which case it’s a little different because there is a lot more chemistry involved…damn chemistry…) Anyway, you get the point.

Enjoy!

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