Masala Chai Tea

Indian Masala Chai Tea has been consumed for decades because of its ability to relieve pain and inflammation and because of it's comforting, fragrant flavor. Now, it's reaching us in the States, popping up on the menus of fancy coffee shops for fancy coffee shop prices, so we love to make it at home instead, and you will notice the difference with the freshly ground spices!

The proportions of milk to tea vary depending on your preference (or the region of India the recipe comes from), as does the sugar level and specific spices in the mixture, although mostly all Masala Chai Teas will have green cardamom, fennel seeds, peppercorns, and cinnamon. Adjust the Masala Chai tea powder to your preferences, as well. Don't like star anise? Perhaps only use one or leave it out completely. Depending on the time of year, we like to mix up the Masala Chai Powder recipe with different additions or substitutions such as dried spearmint, mace, or lavender



To make the masala chai powder:

To make the tea:

  • 1 cup your choice of milk (see note)
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons loose leaf assam black tea (adjust to suit your preferences)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped ginger (optional)
  • Sugar, Agave, or Honey, as needed (Usually 2 to 3 teaspoons)
1. Grind Masala Chai spice powder ingredients together with a mortar and pestle or coffee/spice grinder. Note: it will be difficult to grind whole star anise and whole cinnamon sticks in a mortar and pestle. We suggest buying these freshly ground if you don't have an electric grinder.
2. Bring water to a boil. Add the crushed ginger, spice powder, and tea. Boil everything for 1 minute. 
2. Add the milk and return to a boil, stirring constantly (keep an eye on the pot or it will boil over). When the foam reaches the top, reduce the heat slightly to reduce the foam, and turn back on once foam is reduced. Do this 3-4 times.
3. Add sugar, stir and boil until incorporated. Turn off heat and let sit for 1 minute before straining into mug.
4. Enjoy! 
Note: Traditionally the recipe is used with whole milk, although you can use the milk of your choice. We suggest avoiding skim milk or milks very low in fat as these will not extract as many flavors from the spices as a higher-fat content milk will. 
January 16, 2018 by Anne Karonis
Tags: beverage