Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Chai


For a few months many years ago, I lived in a Sikh Ashram. The two strongest memories I have of it are the 4am yoga and the constantly brewing Chai. The delicious aroma of the Chai was even enough to overpower the competing not so delicious smell of our daily sweating. And homemade chai is one of those things that smells amazing and tastes even better than it smells. Brew a big batch, slowly, on an evening or day when you’re home, then throw extra in the fridge and reheat at will over the course of a week.

Chai for 6

8 cups water
3 T or 3 bags of black tea leaves
1 tsp whole pepper corns
1 T whole cardamom pods
1 stick cinnamon
2 tsp. whole cloves
¼-cup sugar
1/2 cup milk
Put all ingredients into a large pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a very low simmer and cook for at least 30 minutes and up to 90 minutes. Just before serving, turn off and add ½ cup milk. Put a strainer over cups and pour through the strainer.

You can also keep the milk out and scoop out tea one cup at a time, replenishing with water as you do so and adding more spices and tea and sugar every time you get below ½ full…and keep the pot going until Spring turns warm again!

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