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best chai tea recipe?

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I just adore making my own chai, filling up my thermos, and heading out into the chill-tinged fall air. The kitchen smells divine and fall-esque from the warm spices too! Mmmm.

So, I have been playing around with a few different versions of chai, and I would really like to hear your favorites please!

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  1. If I want to go classic I do cardamon and fresh ginger, which is what we got when we were in India (mmm, Chai wallahs on the train...)

    If I want to go fancy, I do cardamon pods, fresh ginger, cinnamon sticks, whole cloves and whole black peppercorns.

    1 Reply
    1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

      Your second version is exactly how I have been making mine, just like that with a little ground fennel seed as well. Aarti (new Food Network Star) calls for star anise in her recipe, which I used as a model. But I went with the fennel seed which I have in the pantry rather than buying the star anise just for one recipe.

      What ratio of spices to each other and to the water/tea, or do you just kind of toss it in without measuring?

    2. Got this recipe from Am. Inst. for Cancer Research newsletter a while back...love it!

      4 green cardamom pods
      4 whole cloves
      1 cinnamon stick
      3 or 4 slices fresh ginger root, lightly bruised up with back of knife to help release flavors
      4 to 6 whole black peppercorns
      3 cups water
      2 regular size black tea bags
      3 Tbsp. honey
      1 cup low-fat milk
      In large saucepan, place cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, bruised ginger slices, peppercorns and water. Bring to boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, covered for 5 minutes. Turn off heat, keep covered and steep for 15 minutes. Add tea bags and steep for 5 minutes and then add the honey and milk. Strain and enjoy.