All you need is a pot, a strainer, and a few tea cups you’re good to go. My family has loved this recipe for generations. The subtle mix of flavors are a nod to the British colonization of both Burma and India.
If you can’t find cinnamon sticks or cardamom in your local grocery store, try visiting Assad’s Mini Mart on Jupiter street. Feel free to snack on some yummy gulab jamun while brewing this. It makes your entire kitchen smell fragrant and exotic. The recipe is also so easy to follow that it makes for the perfect last-minute treat for friends or family who spontaneously stop by.
Total Time: 15-20 minutes / Yield: 8+ teacups (depending on cup sizes)
- 1 liter of Full-Cream milk (or soy)
- 5 tea bags (should be black tea, I use English Breakfast)
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- 6 pieces of star anise
- 6 pieces of cardamom
- 8 pieces of clove
- Ground nutmeg
- Brown sugar or honey for sweetening
- Heat the milk up in a large pot.
- Remove paper labels from your teabags and dunk them in.
- Add the cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, and star anise. Sprinkle the nutmeg over the brew.
- Add your brown sugar or honey. Alternatively, you can serve it separately for your guests to add on their own.
- Stir, then bring the mix up to a boil.
- As the color turns into a light shade of caramel, bring the heat down. By now you won’t be able to stop sniffing the pot, it smells so darn good.
- Once the mix has cooled enough, place a strainer over a tea cup or a tea pot and pour. If your chai has developed a silky layer, that’s normal – the strainer will prevent it and the other ingredients from getting into your cups.
- You can serve this with a sprinkling of cinnamon on top, or even a cinnamon stick on the side.