The British love their cup of tea and their favourite phrase whether in the office or home is fancy a cuppa? Most people tend to use tea bags these days and use loose tea as a special treat when they have more time to brew their tea. Finding the best blend of tea is an art so if you have found a blend of tea you like, my suggestion is to enjoy it and make it your regular cuppa.
The best tea I have ever drunk was when I visited Japan. I am not sure whether it was the blend of the tea or Japanese water or their hospitality which made the tea so tasty.
Which ever brand you like, have you thought of flavouring your tea with spices and herbs and enjoy drinking it like the Indians?
Tea spices or chai masala as it is often called is made up with a combination of spices. The spices in the masala vary from Region to region in India. My recipe for Chai masala is here and I am sure lots of my Indian friends and relations will be making it slightly different from me. But that’s OK as we all have different tastes.
Lately, the weather in UK has been wet and cold so we have been making masala chai with fresh ginger and fresh mint. We really love this tea as it warms us up. Again, some people will make tea by just adding the fresh mint and ginger to the tea and not the usual chai masala. The best way to find out what you enjoy and to try out different variations and decide what taste you enjoy.
Ingredients for 2-3 cups of tea
2-3 teabags or 2-3 teaspoons loose tea (Choose the one you like. I used PG tips).
1 teaspoon of chai masala. (You can also get packets of ready mixed tea masala in most Indian grocery stores)
1 cup of semi skimmed milk
1 teaspoon of fresh grated ginger
2 sprigs of mint – roughly chopped
Sugar to taste – Most people prefer this tea sweet.
3. As soon as it boils, add the milk and sugar if take sugar. Most people like to add extra sugar as they like this tea sweet.
4. As soon as this mixture boils, strain the tea into your cup or mug.
5. Enjoy a hot refreshing cup of masala chai.
Tip: Try not to squeeze the tea bag or tea leaves when you pour your tea through a tea strainer as this could alter the taste of your tea.
If at stage 4, you feel that the tea doesn’t look strong, you can add the extra tea bag/leaves. Once you taste the tea, you can decide whether you would have preferred more spices or herbs.
If you start having this tea as a routine, you’ll soon work out a blend you enjoy.
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