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I love me some chai. How about you? Have you ever tried it? Chai is a tea-based drink, and when made from scratch is usually made with black or Darjeeling tea. (Darjeeling is the “champagne” of teas in case you didn’t know.) The spices include cardamom among other spices, which really gives it a distinctive flavor.
I think the first time I tried it was at a little coffee shop in Springfield, Mo (which has since become Panera Bread Company). I didn’t want coffee that morning (musta been sick!) and the barista suggested a chai.
Oh was that a good idea!
Since then, I’ve had several kinds of chai – from homemade to storebought mixes to specialty brews in a tea or coffee shop. I don’t remember ever having a bad cup of chai – and it’s something that Roy & I enjoy together.
Roy confessed to me that the first time he bought a carton of chai, he didn’t read the directions and drank the concentrate straight up. I think that explains at least SOME of the hair on his chest…
We recently bought a concentrate carton while grocery shopping and I just had to have a cup. I mixed it 50/50 with 2% milk, poured it over ice and added a splash of sugar-free caramel syrup. Oh my… That was FUN! It would make a great holiday punch, in fact, and might be something we enjoy Thanksgiving day!
I have found that I prefer my drinks HOT when I am trying to get myself centered. It’s soothing to have something warm (almost like a shower, I guess) and helps me find my way out of a fog. But I’ve also discovered that when I need to be energized, drinking something ICED is the way to go!
You can buy most concentrate cartons in the coffee aisle at grocery stores – and for the price of one cafe-prepared chai, you can get 8 servings (more or less depending on the brand and your strength preference). You can buy flavored versions – raspberry and chocolate are divine! But you can also make yours at home to your own taste!
Here are some recipes to make yours at home:
Chai Tea (from Food Network)
Do you like chai? What’s your favorite flavor? Is it something you enjoy often or save for special occasions?