Masala Chai: A Start.
My first try at homemade masala chai was based off of some basic directions from a coworker: ginger and cardamom in water, bring to boil, add tea and steep, add milk. My coworker left sugar to the drinker. Her emphasized pieces of advice: don’t cook the tea too long and use fresh ginger.
With that template, I worked up a starting strategy:
- 4oz water; ½inch of fresh ginger, sliced; 4 cracked green cardamom pods go into a pot and bring to a boil.
- Once boiling turn off heat and add black tea.1 Steep for 5 minutes.
- Discard tea bag. Add 2tsp sugar2 and 4oz milk and bring to a simmer.
- Remove from heat and strain into mug.
Of course, this is a single serving.
For a first attempt I thought this was quite good. My first observation on tasting was that it was too sweet. As to the spices, I was expecting the simplicity of ingredients to result in a weak or one dimensional flavor. It did not, the flavor was very pronounced. A bit strong on the minty “cooling” flavor, which I think is coming from the cardamom.
So, next time:
- 1tsp sugar
- 3 cracked cardamom pods (or further analysis by making a ginger tea and a cardamom tea to isolate the flavors of each)
Once the sweetness and cardamom/ginger are in balance, I can start addressing the question of if it needs any additional spices.