Making your own Chai

So, I know we already discussed the culture of Chai Wallahs and Wallies on my blog. They are people of great cultural significance for India thanks to their consistent presence in the towns and cities. They are a meeting place for all the different social stratas that still exist in the country, something of a remnant symbol of British occupation, and a universal signal of comfort for citizens and travelers alike.

I actually wanted to write this blog as a follow-up because I came across this article on the Wall Street Journal from a blog of theirs called India Realtime. The article was actually an explanation of ways you can make delicious chia like the Wallahs in India do. Since we decided to have a chai party for the end of the semester, I thought this would be especially relevant. I will show you their recipes here and link back to the source. Do enjoy. I know I’ll be trying them when I get the chance!

 

Comfort chai   

This is the chai you get on railway platforms and at most people’s homes. It’s lovely and the perfect cup to sit with while wondering why every day can’t be a rainy day. For this you must not use long leaf loose tea because the chai needs to be brewed for a while. You can’t boil or brew loose leaf tea because it just becomes bitter. Get yourself some good Assam blend. I use Tata Tea Gold.

· If you’re making six cups of tea, you’ll need seven level teaspoons of tea.

· Place six cups of water and one cup of milk in a pan. Set to boil.

· While the water and milk is on the hob, add one teaspoon of freshly grated ginger, two green cardamoms that have been bashed so the skin is bruised, and a one inch stick of cinnamon. Tweak the spices to your taste (an American friend told me the taste of cardamom reminds her of soap, and it’s reminded me of soap ever since as well.) Some people even add two or three peppercorns. I don’t.

· Add the tea leaves. Stir.

· As the tea comes to the boil, turn the flame low. Let the brew simmer for five minutes.

· Take off the flame, strain and pour into individual mugs or into a thermos flask. Add sugar to taste. Otherwise add six teaspoons of sugar to the entire brew while boiling.

—— This kind of tea sounds great! She also offers one for the connoisseurs out there, which you can see on her blog here. Below is her recipe for a cup in a hurry.

For people in a hurry

If you love your tea but really can’t be bothered to brew, steep, pour and tweak, don’t worry. Buy a good brand of tea bag like Tetley or Twinings. One of my favorite mixes is with Earl Grey, which has a unique and absolutely delicious taste. However I find it too weak a liquor and too fragrant on its own, so I’ve made my own blend.

· Take a teabag of Earl Grey.

·  Take a teabag of Assam tea.

·  Place both in a tea cup.

·  Pour boiling water over the two bags and cover the cup with a saucer.

·  Leave for three to four minutes, maximum.

·  Take out the tea bags, squeeze them against a teaspoon to remove all the liquor. Chuck the bags.

·  Add a teaspoon of sugar and milk to taste (although I don’t put more than two teaspoons of milk at most.)

· Sip. And feel blissed out.

 

So that’s it! Sounds pretty easy right? Hop over to her blog and give her some love if you liked this post.

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