How do you like your Chai?


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How do you like your Chai?

Postby caradrake » Mar 6th, '08, 17:45

When Padre gave me a sample of oriental black, I enjoyed it, but didn't find it to be spectacular. Then I noticed Adagio said it makes a very good chai, so the next time I brewed some, I added a little bit of milk and sugar. I am absolutely in love with it now!

So, I was wondering: How do you like your chai? Do you use oriental black, or something else? What do you add to it? Do you have a science to making chai, or do you just eyeball it?
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Postby tenuki » Mar 6th, '08, 17:52

I'm assuming you mean masala chai? Chai just means 'tea' to native speakers I believe, it's us english morons that incorrectly mean spiced tea when we say it. If you mean just tea ignore my comments. :)

Without pepper, lots of other stuff. if my tongue is not numb afterwards I feel I've failed. but pepper is hotness without flavor, it is the bane of taste. I hate it. yet, in every american masala chai you find massive amounts of pepper, probably because it is cheap. Tao of Tea's 500 mile cha is my favorite american prepackaged masala cha and predictably it is without pepper. I work with a lot of middle eastern folks and always ask them for their own recipe. The only constant is fresh ginger it seems, and rarely have I heard pepper mentioned. Not a scientific survey of course only about 20 people from India, Pakistan, etc.

I like making my own with fresh ginger, cloves, cinimon, assam, condensed milk, etc.


Boil it directly in the pan in water for like 5+ minutes (I do 10 because that's the way I roll) then bring in the milk/cream until it's up to temp but not burned, then strain out into the cups.

wow!

http://www.odie.org/chai/recipes.html
Last edited by tenuki on Mar 6th, '08, 18:01, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby xine » Mar 6th, '08, 17:58

Chai really refers to the blend of spices added to black tea, made with milk and served with sugar optionally. My best friend makes me the best chai:

She dumps the tea leaves (well she uses some CTC grade ceylon, I'm going to try it with whole leaf) directly into a sauce pan with 1 C water, 1 C milk, and then boils it, and makes it foam up, lowers the heat, raises it, etc, then adds the spices. The masala blend she uses it very peppery, and I love it. She then pours it into a cup with a strainer to catch the tea; if with sugar, I like putting the sugar first before pouring the tea in. Soooo good.
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Postby caradrake » Mar 6th, '08, 17:59

Yes, I am referring to the "English moron chai tea," sorry for not clarifying that! ;)
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Postby tenuki » Mar 6th, '08, 18:03

xine wrote:Chai really refers to the blend of spices added to black tea,


Actually, that would be the masala part, chai means tea to people who's language that word is actually in.
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Postby scruffmcgruff » Mar 6th, '08, 18:45

Yes, Masala means spiced, IIRC; tenuki is right.
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Postby JM » Mar 6th, '08, 22:00

Mine, I like it with LOTS of spice including pepper, just a little milk and honey.
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Postby hop_goblin » Mar 7th, '08, 00:15

Yep, Chai = Tea both in hindi and in arabic. I love my masala made with black pepper corns, fennel, cardamom, clove, ginger, aljawan, and lastly, boiled whole milk! Nummy!
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Postby Chai Mama » Mar 7th, '08, 18:59

I'm a completely new tea drinker, and the only tea I like at this point is Chai Masala. I've become completely addicted to the stuff!

I make it with fresh whole spices ground in a little coffee grinder.

I don't measure, but I grind cinnamon sticks, green cardamom pods, peppercorn, allspice, star anise, and cloves. I try to do more cinnamon and cardamom and less of the other spices. I grind about 1/4 cup at one time and store it in the freezer.

I like a lot of milk, and less water, so I'll put some water and some milk in a saucepan (like 1 water to 3 or 4 milk ratio, and then I add a bit of cream also-yum!). At this point I add some chopped fresh ginger and about 1/2 teaspoon of ground spice mixture per cup of milk. I have gone overboard on the fresh spices before and the result is undrinkable. I have to remind myself to take it easy, because those fresh spices are strong!

Then I bring it the mixture to a boil and let it boil up, then turn off the heat to cool for a few seconds, then boil up again, etc. Then I let it simmer for a while. After that, I add about a teaspoon of black loose leaf tea per cup of milk and let that boil for a minute or two. Then I let it sit for a couple of minutes and strain it.

At that point, I add sugar to taste. Dh likes it sweet (too sweet). I usually sweeten it with sugar and stevia.

Oh, I love this stuff like crazy!!
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Postby tenuki » Mar 7th, '08, 20:35

Chai Mama wrote:Oh, I love this stuff like crazy!!


Great description! I'm going to tell you what to do now, cause I like telling people what to do.

Trademark that name 'Chai Mama', find the perfect recipe, and pour that enthusiasm and passion into making your new masala chai the latest greatest tea brand in the US.

:D
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Postby osadczuk » Mar 7th, '08, 22:25

tenuki wrote:
Chai Mama wrote:Oh, I love this stuff like crazy!!


Great description! I'm going to tell you what to do now, cause I like telling people what to do.

Trademark that name 'Chai Mama', find the perfect recipe, and pour that enthusiasm and passion into making your new masala chai the latest greatest tea brand in the US.

:D


What he said!

The world (and tea world) needs people with a passion!
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Postby Chai Mama » Mar 7th, '08, 22:46

Well, actually, it is hard for me to "go public" with this, since most of my friends and relatives don't drink tea for religious reasons. Sigh. I so want to share this newfound discovery with them, but they will think I am of the devil (and I only wish I were joking!).

My kids and husband are crazy for it too. We are snowed in today and I made a huge pot of chai tea for the whole family. We cozied up by the fire with our mugs of Chai. Yummmm...

Tenuki, I like your idea of a Chai Mama tea brand. Maybe I'll start working on it!
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Postby skywarrior » Mar 8th, '08, 02:38

Awesome idea. This sounds wonderful! :D
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