Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Chai Time

It's been a rainy week in San Francisco and I've been hiding in my apartment sipping copious cups of tea trying to stay dry. In almost every Indian home, when the clock strikes four, the kettle goes on and life stops. If you're lucky, chai time comes with snacks. If you're really lucky, it comes with samosas. (I've been dying to try this recipe from Arthi Party for chicken and mango samosas.)

A classic cup of Indian chai is made from black tea (my favorites are Lipton Yellow Label or Taj Mahal), milk, and sugar. Masala chai (a version of which you get at a coffee shop whose name rhymes with Shmarshucks) includes a mixture of spices, mint, lemon grass, and ginger.

For the name-cards at our wedding, I made individual packs of tea bags and spices for each guest. I attached a note that read:

Tea for Two

There are few things better then chatting with somebody special over a cup of chai. We fell in love sitting on Danoosh’s balcony in Houston sipping cups of tea (or whiskey, vodka, or wine depending on the day).

6 whole cloves 

4 cardamom pods 

2 cinnamon stick, broken into pieces 

2 cups water 

1/4 cup milk 

1 tablespoons granulated sugar 

Crush the cloves, cardamom pods, and cinnamon. Transfer the crushed spices to a small saucepan, add water bring to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat, cover and let steep for five minutes. Add the milk and sugar to the pan and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and drop in the tea bags. Cover and let steep for three minutes. Stir the chai, strain it into a warmed teapot or directly into teacups. Spice it up with mint, lemon grass, black peppercorns, or ginger. 

It's 4:12 pm. Chai time!


  1. Wow! Nice pic, a perfect chai to sit and relax.

  2. Beautiful site! I love chai. Thanks for the recipe ;)

  3. I feel relaxed already just looking at your photo.I do love a spicy cinnamon stick to my cup of tea.Beautiful writing. Lovely site. More power!

  4. I love ginger masala chai, very relaxing n refreshing!

    US Masala

  5. Love the chai and clicks too....lovely space...following it..


  6. lovely clicks!!!!

    Hello shyla
    First time to your space, I'm loving it. No doubt i'm following your blog.
    I will be very Delighited to find you in my followers list.

    Happy Blogging!!!!
    Food Blog News Daily
    Good Food Recipes