Introduction: How to Make a Nice Spiced Tea (chai)
Thistea recipe is for those who enjoy taking care of their body, those who might have digstion problems, those who enjoy making, and drinking tea, or for those who would just like to try something new. This type of tea, also called Chai, finds it's origins in India. There are many different ways to experiment with this infusion, and I encourage you to do so. This is merely the recipe I eventually came up with, and ended up using nearly every day.
What you will need:
8 cardamon pods
1/2 tablespoon of whole black pepper corns
A piece of ginger roughly half the size of a thumb
1 Cinnamon stick
2 Teaspoon's of Black/Darjeeling tea
Sugar (brown preferred)
Fill a saucepan with roughly 1 glass of water. Keep in mind that we will be adding milk, but that some of the water will evaporate during the process. It might some tries to get the amounts of liquid right.
Begin by crushing the cardamon pods, the seeds inside that provide the taste will need to be able to breathe to make their taste infuse with the water.
Peel the ginger, and slice it as thinly as your patience allows. Avoid grating the ginger. Most of the taste in ginger is in the fluids, which are often lost during that process. I prefer using a good old potato-knife.
Watch your fingers!
Step 3: Addings
Add the ginger, cardamon, cinnamon, black pepper corns, bayleaves, star-anis and cloves to the saucepan. And slowly bring it to boil. Remember to keep the lid on it, or we will loose essential taste!
Once our mixture has reached the point of boiling, turn the gaspit as low as possible, and let it gently simmer on the low fire for about 10 minutes, still leaving the lid on.
Step 4: The Milk
After our mixture has gotten a nice coloration. It is time to add the milk. Not much is necessary, we wan't the mixture to turn into an off-white, creamy looking substance, losing all it's transparency.
Step 5: Black Tea
Keep the low fire on, put the lid back on, and wait an additional 5 minutes to let the flavored water get a chance to mix with the milk.
Now we can turn the fire off, and add 2 teaspoons of black/darjeeling tea. Give the tea about 2 minutes to infuse with the rest of the lot.
Step 6: The End
Strain, and add sugar. I prefer this drink as a mildly sweet beverage, adding about 2,5 teaspoons of (brown) sugar.
Server, and enjoy.
If you are in possession of good quality cinnamon, it can be used twice, or in some cases three times before it loses it's power. Give the cinnamon stick a quick wiff before cleaning up, if it smells like cinnamon, it can be used in your next tea.
This tea mixture if perfect for after a large meal. It helps the body digest the food. And because of the ginger and the pepper, you might notice a "clearing of the airways" due to "spiciness".
Drinking this tea on a regular basis should provide a healthy metabolism, and will help your bowl-system to keep your body in a good shape.