Sunday, May 4, 2014

Masala Chai

Jason and I aren't really coffee drinkers. I used to be addicted to flat whites when I was at university, but have since moved on to tea because it doesn't make me jittery. We do visit cafes often though, but instead of coffee, we order Hot Chocolate for Jason and a Chai Latte for me.

However, frequenting cafes is not the best for the wallet so I started buying a chai tea mix from the tea store by my work. It was when I opened the packet that I realised that I could make my own! Now that winter has well and truly arrived, it is the perfect time to make up a batch of masala chai to enjoy while sitting under a blanket with a good book.

Tea and spices for masala chai
Masala Chai is a mix of warming spices and herbs brewed with black tea very popular in South Asia. There is no set recipe or method of preparation for masala chai and many families have their own version although they all contain a tea base, spices, milk and some form of sweetener. 

Crushing the Spices
Preparing the spices mix takes practically no time at all and the end result is very rewarding. It's quite comforting to know exactly what has gone into your drink instead of adding ready made syrups. An added bonus is that the toasting process fills your house up with the most beautiful aroma of warming spices.

I'm hoping that this will last us through winter but, judging by the rate we've been going through it, I think I should have made a bigger batch!

Masala Chai Mix 
Makes about 2 1/2 cups


2 Tbs green cardamom pods
4 whole star anise
4 4" cinnamon sticks
1 Tbs fennel seeds
2 tsp whole cloves
2 tsp whole black peppercorns
2 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 cup chopped candied ginger or dried orange peel
1 1/2 cups loose black tea


1. Preheat the oven to 180°C
2. Place all the spices in a baking dish and toast in the oven for 5 minutes
3. Lightly crush the toasted spices in a mortal and pestle (or use a rolling pin)
4. Add the candied ginger and black tea to the spices and mix well.
5. Spoon into a jar to enjoy all winter!

Brewing Instructions:
For two


1 cup boiling water
1 cup milk
1 Tbs Masala Chai mix 


1. In a plunger, pour the boiling water over the chai mix and let steep for 5 minutes. The tea will become bitter if you leave it too long. Alternatively, you can put the mix into a tea bag or mesh ball.
2. While the tea is brewing, heat the milk in a saucepan or in the microwave.
3. Mix the hot milk and strained tea and sweeten to taste.
4. Enjoy :)


  1. I love this drink too, I always make it if I have too much milk in the fridge that I need to use up :P

  2. I like making my own chai too because sometimes they are a bit too heavy on some spices that can overpower (like clove) and I can make it with my own concentrations. Plus tea makes me less jittery too :D

  3. Dear Lucy,

    I'm neither a coffee nor a tea drinker.

    I think my favourite drink is water that's frozen and surrounded by whisky in a short glass, makes me less jittery for sure :)

  4. Totally giving this a go - looks so good! I find the Chia tea bags you buy don't really have enough flavour so I'm looking forward to trying this out. Will be a nice change to my usual cuppa in the evening.

  5. This sounds yummy, I need to drink more tea!


  6. I love chai! This is a wonderful recipe for chai lover. And it can be a great gift too (*hint hint*). :D I should make one for myself one day. It'll save a lot of time and it must smell so nice... <3

  7. One of the things I love about chai is that you can customize it to your own tastes. I am so stealing your idea of adding orange peel to my next blend tx:-)

  8. I've seen a couple of bloggers posting about chai tea lately, I really should give it a go as it looks so easy and chai is amazing! I am hosting Sweet NZ this month which is a monthly blogging link up for Kiwi bloggers - you should think about submitting one of your sweet recipes :)