Although coffee is often a must in the morning, these chilly mid-winter days have me craving the fragrant warmth of a good cup of chai tea. The best cup of chai tea I’ve ever enjoyed was made by Hands of Tibet’s own Gyalten Khunkyab in Kathmandu. Gyalten’s recipe is deceptively simple and imminently delicious – perfect for cold morning, an after school snack (cookie dunking optional!), or as an accompaniment to good friends and good conversation. Brew up a pot, give a friend a call, and try Gyalten’s Famous Chai tea recipe!
Milk, water, sugar, ginger, favorite black tea
Fill a cooking pot two thirds full of milk and one third full of water. Add 4-5 bags of your favorite black tea, more for a bigger pot. Gyalten uses Lipton tea because of it’s easy availability and good taste. Turn your stove top on to medium heat. Chop the ginger, add a handful or more to taste. The ginger lends a unique flavor to the tea, experiment to find out what you like. As the milk/water mixture warms, add sugar to taste. Gyalten has been known to throw a cardamom pod in to the mixture if he feels like it! Simmer the tea for 5-10 minutes depending on how you take your tea. Experiment with the amounts of ingredients to find what tastes best to you.
In Nepal and Tibet, cha ngamo (Tibetan for sweet or chai tea) is served in a small cup, the size and shape of a shot glass. The tea stays nice and hot in a smaller cup, always refill others' cup before filling your own.