In the cold, damp months of winter I always find myself craving warming elixirs– hearty soups, tea, cocoa. This winter has been the winter of Chai. I drink it all the time– slowly simmering fresh ingredients on the stove (and filling my house with yummy, spicy smells), or more quickly as a loose-leaf, chai tea.
There are so many amazing chai recipes available that it seems silly to list ingredients, but here are a few of my favorite staples:
- Cinnamon – warm-cozy that gives me a feeling of well-being
- Ginger – warm-spicy that spreads all the way to my toes
- Cardamom – my all time favorite spice for the yummy flavor
- Cloves – warm-sweet that starts with the first sip
- Black Pepper – hot-spicy, just a hint is enough for me
When I make Chai at home I usually add a flavorful, loose-leaf black tea. I prefer something strong and malty (like Brahma Gold, a farmer-direct Indian tea). There are no rules though– Chai lends itself to experimentation!
“Masala Chai” means spiced tea– so play with it– try your own favorite spices. Try green or oolong tea instead of black tea. Make it hot with cayenne, make it earthy with Mate. Leave out the tea altogether and go for a caffeine-free chai for cozy evenings. Add warm milk (sooo creamy). Add Matcha green tea (spoiler: Matcha Chai is delicious and has a caffeine kick for the mornings).
In short– when you’re cold and need something warm– make your own, perfect Chai this winter.