A small pinch of chai offers an Indian ocean of flavors and possibilities. In this recipe, we bring the classic Chai Latte from the coffee shop to the kitchen counter. All you need is chai, water and milk, and syrup or spices if you want more chai flavor.
The story of chai
The tea drinks we now associate with "chai" have their roots in Indian tea culture. Here, it is an old custom to boil leaves from various herbs before adding milk and sugar. In the 19th century, when the British introduced tea plantations in the district of Assam, black tea also became part of the recipe. Cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, anise, pepper and clover are examples of herbs and spices that are commonly used to boil the tea leaves. In India, this is called 'masala chai' (spiced tea), but as the drink has spread around the world, only the name 'chai' (which really just means tea) has come along for the ride. Today, chai is used to describe an Indian sea of tea drinks where the common denominator is black tea with elements of various spices. A popular example is the chai latte, where hot steamed milk is added to the tea after brewing.
Homemade Chai Latte
This is what you need:
- One pyramid bag of Chai
- Approx. 60 grams of hot water
- One pump of Chai syrup (can be omitted)
- Fill with freshly strained milk
- If you wish, you can top the latte with ground ginger and cardamom
How to make Chai Latte
Place the pyramid bag of Chai in the teacup and pour in about 60 grams of hot water (feel free to use a scale) and let the tea steep for 2-3 minutes. If you want a sweeter Chai Latte, you can then add one pump/tablespoon of Chai syrup. Then fill the cup with freshly steamed milk.
How to make warm and fluffy milk foam without a steamer: Heat the milk in a saucepan. Remove it from the plate as soon as it starts to bubble slightly (before it starts to boil). Run a hand blender through the milk until it reaches the desired consistency. It is recommended to use whole milk if you want a rich milk foam.
You can also use a whisk if you don't have a hand mixer. In that case, start whisking while you heat the milk.
If you have a press jug, you can pour the hot milk into it and then press the strainer up and down for about ten seconds or until you have the desired consistency of milk.