My personal favourite spicy masala chai recipe - You've got to chai this!

Following up from my previous post ‘Oh you teas! - Which chai to choose?’ I promised I would share my beloved tried and tested spicy masala chai recipe, so here it is!

Take the following ingredients and grind them up, I use a stone pestle and mortar (mainly because it’s great fun!) but a coffee or spice grinder work just as well. Failing that, crush with the back of a spoon!

½ tsp fresh ginger (grate before grinding for smoothest results)
4 whole cloves (or use ½ tsp of fennel seeds if you prefer, or both if you're feeling audacious!)
½ tsp freshly ground black peppercorns
4 cardamom pods, bruised first (give them a bash)
1 cinnamon stick, broken into pieces (but not too small) or use ½ tsp powdered cinnamon
¼ tsp of nutmeg (grated or powdered)

Scoop this mixture into a saucepan and add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Then add 2 cups of whole milk and add 2 tsp of sugar or honey. I prefer honey but brown sugar also tastes great. Bring to the boil once more.

Then remove from the heat and add 2 tbsp loose black tea, I tend to go for Assam. Cover and let steep for 4-5 minutes (I like it quite strong). Strain directly into the cups or a teapot if using one and serve!

Personally, I use a nice strong Assam as my base because it has a powerful, malty flavour and adding a cheeky pinch of nutmeg really does finish it off. There is nothing complicated about making it and all ingredients are easy to get hold of. It's a pretty traditional recipe and easily adaptable but if I have to offer one element NOT to change it would be using whole milk, you simply have to. Go on treat yourself, even semi-skimmed doesn’t quite do it justice.

For all chai wallahs wanting some extra flourish, you can buy many amazing chai glasses and caddies sets. I bought these wonderful chai glasses recently at a bargain price and they always get a good reception. Even if I find myself drinking more because the glasses are a touch small!

There are a wealth of other great masala chai recipes out there and it is always good to experiment to make it just right for your taste. If you try my version and love it or you adapt it to even greater things, I would love to hear from you.

Coming soon - More and more I am seeing chai related food on menus and blogs too, which further fuels my love of chai. Keep an eye out for my next blog post, all about chai food!

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