Updated: Oct 20, 2022
I love the ritual of grinding coffee beans, taking in the aroma, warming the milk and making the perfect cup of freshly ground coffee. I used to drink 4 or 5 cups a day at one stage, now I have it occasionally, adding cardamom to counteract some of the negative effects. From an Ayurvedic perspective it's both heating and drying, so can aggravate Pitta and Vata. Modern science also warns against the impact of caffeine on bones. Although black tea also includes caffeine, it contains other compounds that can counteract it. In moderation, a properly made cup of Masala Chai can be the universal drink and even bring you one little step closer to enlightenment as it is a perfectly balanced meal combining Vata - Tea, Kapha - Milk and Pitta - Honey/Sugar. It helped me to kick my coffee addiction and now I have it for breakfast a few times a week. The process of boiling the spices, warming the milk taking in all the wonderful smells and taking time out to slowly drink it, feels like a nice warm hug!
Masala Chai - From 'The Everyday Ayurveda Cookbook' by Kate O'Donnell. Feel free to change the spices as nobody else can make your perfect cup, its like your DNA and only you'll know what you like. For one cup, boil a cup of filtered water in a pan and add a stick of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon, 5 green cardamom pods crushed, a couple of slices of fresh ginger, 2 cloves and a dash of nutmeg, and 1tsp of coriander. You can vary these and/or add your own - you'll find what you like. Boil for at least 10mins, then put the pan on medium heat and add 1/2 cup of milk of whatever variety you prefer - I used goats milk. Add the contents of an Assam Tea Bag, or any good quality looseleaf black tea along with 1/2 tsp of jaggery, or coconut sugar . If you prefer, use honey but only add at the end after it's cooled for 5mins. Simmer uncovered for around 5-7mins. Less time will mean less astringency, thus les drying effect. Remove from the heat and strain. My pics from this morning below. Feel free to comment with yours! ENJOY.