Chai Tea Concentrate
Just over a year ago, I met my friend, Mel, when she came to buy strawberry plants from the farm. We had decided the fall prior that we were going to let go of the u-pick strawberry patch and focus our attention on the livestock part of the farm. Mel came with her little guy and a friend to buy 100 strawberry plants to plant on her farm. I quickly discovered that Mel was a seller of Canadian (& abroad) sourced teas. I had somehow made it to almost 40 years old without taking up the habit of coffee or tea drinking (what!!). I had just started to dabble in trying a few teas. Mostly at conferences and meetings for my 9to 5 job. I was so excited to meet Mel and started picking her brain about where to start with "learning to be a tea drinker". She walked me through a few suggestions and I gave her black Assam tea a try. Needless to say, I was hooked! Thanks to Mel & her tasty tea suggestion, I am now a proud daily tea drinker!
Shortly after this, I met a friend at a local coffee shop. I really hadn't tried much on the coffee shop menus prior to this but asked them for a recommendation. They suggested I try a chai tea latte. And wow! So good!
There are a couple of local coffee shops in Camrose that make amazing chai tea lattes. Unfortunately, I'm only in town once a week for deliveries and don't always make it to the coffee shop. So, I needed to re-create the deliciousness at home!
After some trial and error, we created a recipe that has the perfect flavour and makes enough concentrate to have about 4 to 6 chai lattes (depending on the size of your mug and the ratio of chai concentrate to milk that you use).
A note about sweetener:
A few of the chai concentrate recipes out there have sweetener added right to the concentrate. I have opted to leave out the sweetener at the time of concentrate preparation. This allows the sweetening to be added at the time of drinking. This allows the consumer to add however much sweetening they'd like. I like to use the local honey we get from The WIldflower Bride. You could use maple syrup or another sweetener of your choice.
Chai Tea Latte Recipe
- 5 cups water
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- 6 cardamom pods
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- 10 whole cloves
- 1/4 cup chopped ginger root
- 1/4 cup black tea leaves (Assam)
In a medium saucepan, add cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, peppercorns, cloves, and ginger root to the water. Heat over high heat to bring it to a boil. Once boiling, lower the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes.
Remove the mixture from heat and add the black tea and stir. Allow to steep for 5 minutes. Don't steep much longer than this or it may taste bitter.
Strain the tea mixture through a sieve. The recipe makes approximately 4 cups of chai concentrate. Transfer to a mason jar or other airtight container. Store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Instructions to make Chai Tea Latte:
Using a 1:1 ratio, mix chai concentrate with milk (of your choice). Heat in a small saucepan on the stove or in the microwave until desired temperature. Add honey or maple syrup to sweeten to desired sweetness.
You can adjust the ratio of chai concentrate to milk to your desired taste.
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