Masala Chai Recipe

Chai in the summertime?  You betcha’! (That’s what we say about anything we agree with in Minnesota.)  It was the the most wonderful of afternoon pick-me-ups!  And, how fortunate for us it was made by someone who really knew what they were doing!  While we were visiting Kristin & Devon in Baltimore, another one of their friends, Vivek, who is from India, happened to be in the U.S. on business.  So, Devon drove into Washington, DC to pick him up and bring him back to Baltimore for a visit as well.  We usually start craving a shot of espresso mid afternoon, but with Vivek in the kitchen we were in for a special treat!  He was going to show us how to make Masala Chai, a hot spiced tea drink.

The first thing Vivek did to make the Chai was to pour in the water and the milk.   This should be a 50/50 amount of water and milk.  He also added just a splash of heavy cream.

Then, he added 2 1/2 scoops of sugar.  Um, I know we don’t have perfect numbers here, but this is something best made by feel, and to taste,  and perhaps by somebody who is from India.

Then, he added 2 or more cardamon seeds, 3 strips of cinnamon, 4 fresh mint leaves, and a pinch of ginger powder.  (You can also use fresh ginger if you have it on hand.)  No vanilla!!  That’s right Starbucks!

These ingredients should be boiled on high heat.  When the Chai starts to bubble on the edges of the pan lower the heat and add the tea.  Stir in the tea until camel in color.  Then, turn up the temperature for about 2 minutes.  Then, it is finished, strain, and drink!

You can see, while we’ve had other bowls of bliss , we loved these tiny bowls very much!!  We treasured the time Vivek spent in the kitchen with us, teaching us how to make real Chai.  Do you have a friend who has shared a traditional recipe or meal with you?  Please add on your comment and share it with us at the LoveFeast Table!!

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  1. Help me out with something….with milk in the mix, doesn’t it curdle when you boil it?

    That being said, I love good homemade chai and have been using an authentic Indian recipe at home for more than two years. I love it chilled in the summertime. It’s pretty similar to this but with a bit more spice. Good Chai is so hard to find, and NO coffee shop does it right!!

  2. Kristin says:

    It doesn’t curdle and it takes on a dark creamy texture. We had been doing it without milk too…but, Vivek corrected us…and the final product is amazing! He said use whole milk, not skim!

  3. Great to see the step by step. I once made chai spice mix and gave to co-workers as an Xmas gift (with instructions on how to brew hot chai). I’m sure your recipe is better!

    Enjoying your tweets and blog after I met ChrisAnn at nail salon and she connected me to LoveFeast.

    BTW I see you are a fan of Promenades Gourmandes, did you ever take a class with Paule? I did in Jan 2007.

  4. Grandmom in STL says:

    As Kristin knows, I have loved Chai ever since she and Devon introduced it to me several years ago. I’m thrilled you are sharing this experience and recipe! Since I’ve been trying to stay away from sugar, I’ve been trying different sugar alternatives and have recently begun using stevia.

    I’d like to clarify the 2 1/2 scoops of sugar. I see the scoop in the picture, but that seems like a lot of sugar if they were full scoops. Also, how many cups of chai did this recipe yield?


  5. Thanks for allowing us in your little party. I missed why they were moving. That’s a big step to move a family with three kids. And, what good friends they are leaving.

  6. This sounds wonderful. You had me at CARDAMOM. 🙂 Can’t wait to try authentic chai.

  7. that stuff was so tasty, sooo tasty! thanks so much for sharing on hit’n’run to your house!

  8. Agreed, no vanilla in my chai thank you very much! I love the little cups you drank the chai from, very cute. I usually use a boring old glass! See some pictures of making chai at home on my blog, if you are interested:


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