Having a cough & cold when you live alone is the pits. Much as you want to whinge on about your every ailment and symptom to your friends and family, they seem shockingly disinterested in you phlegmy news. Leaving you alone to face the prospect of being a lethargic, sweaty lump of self pity, squawking like a fledgling for someone stronger to feed you… to no avail.
Still, one must look after oneself and so I wheeled myself into the kitchen on my wheelie chair to experiment with Masala Chai recipes – a new found cold buster brought to my attention by the charming & knowledgeable @aftabarab of Masterchef fame.
Now, I have in my time tried Masala Chai, although have found it tooth-achingly sweet and cloyingly strong. So, after researching and testing many recipes, I have come up with my own recipe for a delicious & gently spiced Masala Chai that is both refreshing and medicinal for those with cough or cold symptoms. I would have liked a second opinion, although my friends will not come near me through fear of catching my lurgy – the selfish pig-dogs!
3 cardamom pods
1 cinnamon stick, lightly crushed
2 whole cloves (optional)
4 thin slices of ginger root
6 black pepper corns
1 bay leaf (optional)
125 ml milk
1 ½ tablespoons black tea (I used Assam, Darjeeling would be good)
2 tablespoons granulated sugar (or to taste)
- Lightly crush Cardamon pods and Cinnamon in a mortar.
- Pour the water into a pan. Add the crushed Cardamon, Cinnamon, Ginger, Pepper Corns, Bay Leaf and Cloves. Bring the mixture to the boil, reduce the heat and gently simmer for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat, cover the pan and steep for 10 minutes, to allow the spices to infuse.
- Add the tea leaves to the pan. Bring to boil, stir, remove from heat, cover and steep for 5 more minutes.
- Add the sugar and milk to the pan and bring to a boil and stir.
- Your Masala Chai is now ready. Just strain through a fine mesh sieve into a warm tea pot or pouring jug and serve.