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Recipe for weaselchai

What do I know from chai? I’m a small furry mustelid from Tennessee. I went on YouTube and watched Indians make the stuff. Which is so simple, turns out, the easiest video to follow wasn’t even in English.

Per the instructions, take 2 parts water and 1 part whole milk. Bring it to a simmer, add chai, bubble for three minutes, add sugar and done. If you’ve bought a decent chai mix, that’ll make a very fine drink. There are some nice mixes to be had online.

But what’s the fun in that? What I actually do is boil the water by itself first, including any ‘hard’ ingredients like stick cinnamon or cardamom pods that could use a good boilin’. I let that chunder until I remember it’s on the stove. Then I add the milk and any ‘soft’ ingredients: things like tea that shouldn’t boil too long. Let it all come back to a simmer and then strain into a pre-warmed thermos flask with lots of sugar.

Things that really should be in chai: water, milk, tea, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger root, sugar.

Things lots of people put in chai: star anise, cloves, peppercorns, orange peel, nutmeg.

Things that can be put in chai: anything. AN-Y-THING. Any spice you like the taste of, any herbal remedy that wants boiling. I know a herbalist who puts turmeric in it. The only error I’ll admit to so far is hops (fine in an herbal tea, too bitter for a sweet chai).

I stole the image from this article on whether it’s okay to re-use tea. It’s an interesting article (and, from the looks of it, a good American tea supplier). Read it if you care.


Comment from DurnedYankee
Time: March 5, 2019, 10:44 pm

Re-use Tea?

What are you, skinflint Yankees?!!!!!

“lotta good flavah left in that, don’t throw it out ya damnfool, we ken use it again lateah this evenin”

“Put that in your Gawain Ah-tha!”

OH! Gaiwan – I hate being slysdexic.

Comment from Ric Fan
Time: March 5, 2019, 11:49 pm

Anybody ever taste Mate(?) that Argentinians drink with a metal straw?

Comment from Uncle Al
Time: March 6, 2019, 1:01 am

@Ric Fan – I lived in Argentina for three years as a boy – aged 10 to 12. Yerba mate was all around but nobody would let me try it because I was too young. Coffee was perfectly OK for kids, but not mate. I have a mate gourd and a bombilla among my Argentine mementos but they’ve never been used.

Non-Argentines (they drink it in Uruguay and southern Brazil, too) who have drunk it say it is not pleasant and not to their liking at all. I suppose that is why I’ve never made the effort to have any in the almost 60 years since I left Buenos Aires.

Comment from Can’t Hark My Cry
Time: March 6, 2019, 5:30 pm

Thanks, Sweas!

Comment from BJM
Time: March 6, 2019, 6:20 pm

I just don’t like the mouth feel of milk in tea…so no chai for me.

Imma Earl Grey w/ lemon or half Irish breakfast & half English breakfast w/ honey hot tea drinker. I also like blooming flower tea on cold afternoons.

Comment from Steve Skubinna
Time: March 6, 2019, 7:26 pm

After having chai in Indian restaurants overseas a few decades ago (before it became popular in the US) I tried to reverse engineer it. The cinnamon, cardamom and ginger was obvious, but there was something missing.

A few years later, the internet is everywhere so I do some searches. Find lots of Indians relating their recipe, as made by their grandmother in Bombay or whatever, and nearly every one had… peppercorns. I never would have figured that one out. Anyway, added some next time and it was just like I used to get overseas, from “proper” Indians.

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