Making traditional Masala chai with black tea.

Fully oxidized tea leaves for a robust cup.

Re: Making traditional Masala chai with black tea.

Postby MEversbergII » Jul 2nd, '14, 14:35

Bit of a bump, but I got re-bit by the DIY Chai Masala bug recently, so I hunted around for recipes. I found this one: ... -ever.html

I'd was deliberating over Assam or Darjeling (which I've yet to try, actually), but that post gave me something rather specific: Mamari. I'd not seen that word used before, so I looked about and got a large off Amazon for not a lot of money. Also picked up a Turkish warmer, to make dispensing much easier.

Once the tea and pot come in, I'm liable to gather up the spice mix at the local grocers (0 of which are Indian, sadly) and give it a go.

It's really high on black pepper, so it might need some modification to pass the test with the other half. I'd also like to try it with palm sugar, a la Jay's suggestion, but the first go will be brown or white. Is honey a common sweetener in India?

I'll also experiment with bottling and fridging this for hotter days/always having some on hand. Figuring by next weekend, I should have data.


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Re: Making traditional Masala chai with black tea.

Postby jayinhk » Jul 2nd, '14, 14:40

I believe honey was always used in ayurveda, but I've never seen anyone use it in tea in India (except for my mom, and she's spent most of her life in Hong Kong). ;)

I was just in Mumbai and wasn't in the mood for teabag tea...I took my own sencha and Chinese green, and my new kyusu too. I actually brought back 1.25 kg of coffee (primarily beans, but 500g of ground coffee with chicory too).

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Making traditional Masala chai with black tea.

Postby Pig Hog » Jul 2nd, '14, 16:21

Bring a couple of scoops of tea, some cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, maybe black peppercorns, maybe some ginger to the boil in half a cup of water. And half a cup of milk (can play with the water/milk ratio) and sugar to taste and allow to simmer for about 5-10 mins.


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Re: Making traditional Masala chai with black tea.

Postby MEversbergII » Jul 9th, '14, 09:41

Started giving this a go last weekend, and it turned out pretty good! Got better when I started using brown sugar instead of white (still need to try palm sugar or honey, though).

As a heads up to anyone present or in the future trying the above recipe, it makes a large amount of spice mix. I saw the amounts but didn't make the connection evidently. When you're using it only 1/8 - 1/4 tsp per cup, it is a HUGE supply. Dampens how much upfront the spices cost for sure. Also, a spouted pot or "Turkish Warmer" is a fantastic tool to have.

I'll probably be making little containers of some of this for others to try (ooo, maybe a teaswap thread?), and maybe playing with a few different types of mixes (maybe something lighter on the pepper).


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Re: Making traditional Masala chai with black tea.

Postby john.b » Aug 5th, '15, 01:49

I just experimented a little more with making masala chai and wrote about it here:

No need to read that, though, I'll tell you what it adds beyond what's already been discussed here. That initial article was one I reviewed for the first post on making masala chai, referenced there (different post).

One recipe mentioned adding salt, and it actually does work well. Of course it relates to preference, and it only takes a trace of it, and it would be a bit scary adding it to a large batch like that one out of fear of screwing it all up. Maybe better to add it separately, to a little afterwards, since it wouldn't change flavor through cooking like the other ingredients. That recipe mentions using ginger powder, which works, but since ginger root is inexpensive and ginger flavor is so fundamental it would be nice to add both a little powder and some fresh ginger, added grated in or shaved.

I didn't make the tea boiling milk with the tea and spices, as in that recipe, which might make a difference. One would need a recipe with fixed amounts to get to that and I tend to just keep adjusting related to sweetener and milk, or even tweaking the spice blend.

I experimented with mixing a little lapsang souchong into the other black tea, to add a little smoke, and that worked out well (again as always, relates to preference, and a little would go a long way).

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Re: Making traditional Masala chai with black tea.

Postby Psyck » Aug 6th, '15, 08:45

Some online sites that offer masala chai:

With CTC Leaves:
Golden Tips (India)
Golden Tips (Worldwide)

With Whole Leaves:
Udyan Tea (Worldwide)

I've purchased teas from these sites, though not masala chai.

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