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Chai Tea Recipe
Tea brings cultures together; it can be a morning fix of caffeine, or a deeply rooted cultural ceremony. Flavors of tea vary with time and space, but its significance remains the same as ever. Chai tea (Chai meaning tea in Hindi) is now popular world over. It is rapidly becoming more popular than even coffee, all over India.
This creamy tea has a history that dates back 5,000 years. An Indian king is said to have used Chai tea to cure diseases, and that this led to its initial popularity as a beverage. Chai tea is brewed with several spices; this is what gives it its special, unmistakable taste. Chai tea recipes are different in different parts of India. Often, these are handed down family lines. Each Chai tea recipe depends upon the proportions in which spices are blended.
Chai tea in India was primarily produced in Assam, during the British rule. Tea from Assam continues to be some of the most expensive in the world today. The cut, tear and curl method was introduced in tea plantations during the 1960s. Black tea was then available in stronger flavor. This method of black tea production persists to this day. A strong black tea is the starting point for every form of Chai tea. Creamy milk is added to this, along with a wide range of spices. The spices used in Chai tea are different across India, but the most commonly used ones are cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, peppermint, ginger, and cloves. Recently added spices include cocoa, almonds and vanilla. Honey, sugar, or molasses is added as a sweetener. Sometimes, all three are added, which makes Chai tea both sweet and spicy at the same time.
It is very simple to make Chai tea. First, you must boil black tea leaves, and your choice of sweetener, with milk and freshly ground spices. Boil, steep and simmer the Chai. Then pour through a strainer to strain tea and spice residue. Serve it warm and fresh, or cold and iced, depending upon your taste.
This type of tea is sold on street corners in India, and in the most up market restaurants across the world, as well. If you want to find the perfect blend of spices to suit you, you can make the tea at home and experiment with the proportions that you use. This soothing drink brings peace and contentment from the very first sip, so if you have not tried it yet, make sure you do.