Chai tea is better known as masala chai (“masala” means spices). And while there is no standard recipe or preparation method, it typically involves brewing a strong loose black tea with warming spices like cardamom, ginger, and cinnamon. The authentic Indian masala chai includes 5 essential spices i.e. green cardamom, cinnamon, clove, black peppercorn, and ginger. You can also prepare your masala chai in a number of variations by adding other spices like coriander seeds, fennel seeds, star anise, etc.
Masala Chai or Spicy Recipe
- 2 cups water
- 2 teaspoon tea leaves (assam tea )
- 2 cups milk (soy/almond/coconut/cream)
- sugar or honey to taste
Spices or use a homemade masala chai spice mix >>
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 4-6 green cardamoms pods
- 1/4 tsp grated fresh ginger
- 2-4 black peppercorns
- 3-4 cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
- coriander seeds
- vanilla seeds
- bay leaves
- Star Anise
- Grind together cardamom, cinnamon stick, peppercorns, cloves, and fennel seeds with mortar and pestle and keep aside.
- Add water to a small saucepan, transfer the crushed spices or use the chai tea spice mix and ginger. Reduce heat to low and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes to infuse flavors.
- Add the milk and tea leaves. Continue to simmer for 1-2 minutes.
- Remove from the heat. Cover and let steep for 2 minutes.
- Add honey or sugar to taste. Strain the tea into a warmed teapot or directly into teacups.
Other variations can include ingredients like cinnamon, saffron, rose, fennel, peppercorn, clove, and star anise.
You can increase or decrease the quantities of spices based on your taste. You can add few tulsi (holy basil) leaves to increase immunity.