Chai means tea. But no ordinary tea. It is an Indian, spicy, warming, healing, sweet tea. Everyone has their own variation for making chai, either with extra ginger or mostly cardamom, and this is the version which I drink in the autumn and winter months as it clears damp from the body, is comforting and nourishing and will help keep sore throats and colds at bay. It can be made with regular black tea, like Assam. I sometimes use Rooibos Tea which has no tannins or caffeine and so having it late afternoon after a chilly day out won’t prevent you from winding down into the evening.

Autumn Chai

 

  • 1/2 inch fresh ginger root
  • 4 black peppercorns
  • 4 fresh green cardamom pods
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 whole cinnamon stick
  • 500ml water
  • organic whole milk or almond milk
  • 2 Assam or rooibos tea bags
  • raw honey to taste

Finely grate fresh ginger. With a pestle and mortar, roughly grind up the peppercorns, cardamoms, cloves and cinnamon. Add ginger and spices to water and bring to a boil in a large pan. Once boiling, lower the heat and allow to simmer for 3- 5 minutes. Add loose leaf tea or teabags, simmer for a further 3 minutes. Add in the milk in the last minute of simmering. Then take tea off the heat, pour into a teapot using a tea strainer and add honey to taste. You can determine the amount of milk and honey to suit your taste. You can also change the quantities of spices to find your perfect cup of chai!

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