Tea Time...The Truth about Chai!

Image taken by: Ray Ball. Location: Lola's Cafe, Cincinnati, OH 

How do you pronounce it?

Like ‘why’, or ‘my’.
Does it have any other names?
Yessir! Chai tea is sometimes called Masala Chai, or just Chai for short.

Where does it come from?
Originally from India, it became very popular back in the 60s when a new method of production was developed. This new process made sourcing and making Chai far cheaper, aka for the low. As a result, many more residents of India could afford to make, sell and/or buy Chai on a regular basis.

Now even celebrities such as Oprah have a custom chai flavor in shops such as Starbucks!

What does Chai mean?
In many countries, including Greece, China, Turkey and India, Chai is simply the word for tea. So, call it Chai tea if you like, but you are saying ‘tea tea’! There’s a funny article here on this common mistake, I got weak as soon as a read it!

What is it supposed to do?
Not only does drinking Chai give you a quick and easy way to take in all sorts of valuable properties that the ingredients offer, but it is also said to;
- Give you peace of mind
- Boost your immune system
- Fight harmful bacteria, infections and diseases
- Taste delicious!
Plus, if you make it at home it makes the house smell amazing! It is also said to be a great coffee replacement for those wanting to do a detox. Yes, you can detox with chai and not spend all your hard earned coin getting then from chicks getting paid on Instagram. Chai tea can be purchased from a number of places for a fraction of the cost from so called IG detox teas!
What are the ingredients?
In India, how it is made varies somewhat depending on the region. However, there are some essential ingredients that all Chai tea must include.
-Black tea
-Spices, often including cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, pepper and cloves
-Sugar, or another sweetener
The pre-blended version of Chai tea from For Teas Sake also includes coriander, star anise and nutmeg. It is also suggested here that in India if you are given Chai with a cardamom pod inside, this means the maker considers you special or a good friend.
What do the ingredients do?
It’s common knowledge that black tea is full of antioxidants. These are suggested to hold cancer, disease and bacteria fighting properties. Ginger, meanwhile, is famed for promoting effective digestion and reducing inflammation. It is also said to be beneficial to those with arthritis. Cloves too can help with digestion, and black pepper is suggested to help speed up our metabolisms.

How do I make it?
You can make it from scratch using one of these recipes. However, consider investing in a pre-blended pot like the one mentioned above. This means you can make it even when you’re not at home.

How do you drink it?
One of the great things about Chai is all the different ways you can drink it! This includes hot or cold, in a milkshake or with ice! Because you’re in control of which milk and tea you use, you can even make nonfat, low-fat or decaffeinated versions.
In India, it is often made with buffalo milk, which is thicker than regular cow's milk. However, if your local store doesn’t stock buffalo milk, worry not. You can still make it just fine with regular milk. To be extra authentic, serve your Chai in a small tea glass.

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