Give a man some chai and you cheer him up for a day. Teach him to make chai and you will cheer him up forever.
We at The Overseas Magazine love teaching friends in the US how to make chai, mostly because then they can make some for us whenever we visit them.
A few months ago we shared our chai recipe with a friend named Jared. A few weeks ago, he invited us over to taste one of his recipes. Jared is a great cook and is fearless about experimenting with spices. Here’s his fancy chai recipe for one cup:
1 tsp Orange pekoe tea + half cup whole milk + half cup water + a slice of ginger + a tsp of licorice + a pinch of black pepper + a cardamom pod + a sprinkle of cinnamon.
Of course Jared did not use those exact measurements for any of the ingredients. He brought it all to a boil, let it simmer for a minute and strained the chai into a cup. We were skeptical about the taste but the chai was absolutely delicious!The ingredients had already made it mildly sweet so we skipped the sugar.
You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.
– C.S. Lewis
There are many chai recipes serving different needs and cravings. We want to share a few of our favorites with you.
Basic chai recipe for two cups:
Bring about one cup of milk + one cup of water + two tsp of loose tea leaves to a boil. We prefer Orange Pekoe loose tea because of its amazing taste and flavor. When it rises, lower the heat or turn it off and let the chai simmer till the color changes to caramel brown. A darker color might mean that your chai is too strong and anything lighter might mean that your chai is not done. Strain it out, add sugar or honey and enjoy!
I say let the world go to hell, but I should always have my tea.
Adding a few spices to chai is what makes it more exciting.
Ginger (Hindi: Adrak): If you’re using the root, use a tiny piece for that mild flavor. You can add it to the milk and water along with the tea leaves. If you are using powdered ginger, add a pinch of it. Ginger’s inflammatory properties make it ideal for fighting a cold or chest congestion.
Rainy days should be spent at home with a cup of tea and a good book.
– Bill Watterson
Cardamom (Hindi: Elaichi): This is another delicious chai spice. It makes tea taste like dessert in a cup, especially if you like Indian desserts. You can use one whole pod for two cups of tea. The chemical composition of cardamon makes it perfect for easing stomach cramps, morning sickness, assist with digestion and soothing nerves.
There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea.
– Henry James
Cinnamon (Hindi: Dalchini): Cinnamon added to chai makes it feel Christimassy and it is also known to make your house smell nice. So add a sprinkle to your tea everyday, like we do! Cinnamon is a great source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. It is also known to lower blood sugar levels.
As far as her mom was concerned, tea fixed everything. Have a cold? Have some tea. Broken bones? There’s a tea for that too. Somewhere in her mother’s pantry, Laurel suspected, was a box of tea that said, ‘In case of Armageddon, steep three to five minutes’.
– Aprilynne Pike, Illusions
Spiced rum: Spiced rum works very well with all chai recipes. Add the rum after you have strained the tea out into cups and you can determine the quantity.
If you are cold, tea will warm you;
if you are too heated, it will cool you;
if you are depressed, it will cheer you;
if you are excited, it will calm you.”
– William Ewart Gladstone
Tea can help you sleep better and also help you feel more alert – it’s truly multi-purpose. Let us know if you tried any of these and The Overseas Magazine team would love to stop by for a cup!
Thank God for tea! What would the world do without tea! How did it exist? I am glad I was not born before tea.”
– Sydney Smith
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