Friday, November 9, 2012

chai tea

Chai Tea 
(adapted from Pure Vegan by Joseph Shuldiner, published by Chronicle Books)

I love chai, it's true. My favorite way of making it is in batches of concentrated mix that you later mix with warm milk and honey. On top of being simple and tasty, it will make your home smell so lovely! Spicy and sweet and toasty. Just what's called for at this time of year when things get chilly and you're wrapped up in a sweater with a good book.

1. Combine 1 tablespoon of fennel seeds, 1 tablespoon cardamom pods, 6 peppercorns, 6 cloves, and 1 cinnamon stick in a mortar and crunch it all up... not so much that it's a powder, though.

2. Slice up a 2-inch knob of ginger into thin coins and throw into a pot along with the spices, 1 bay leaf, and 5 cups of water. Bring up to a simmer and let it go for about 30 minutes.

3. Add 2 tablespoons of black tea (I cut open 4 English Breakfast teabags, regular or decaf). Turn off the heat and let it all steep for 5-10 minutes, depending on how strong you like your chai. I let mine go the full 10.

4. Strain the contents of the pot into two 12 ounce mason jars and add in about 3 tablespoons of honey to each jar, stirring to dissolve.

5. Heat up 4 ounces or so of milk (moo or soy or whatever you like) and add in about the same amount of chai mix. Adjust the milk to chai ratio, sweeten further to taste, and get cozy with a good book.

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