Accidents can occasionally lead to significant advancements, as exemplified by a historical occurrence that gave rise to a fragrant blend known today as tea. Originating in China, tea has gained worldwide popularity in various forms, including green tea, oolong tea, black tea, chai tea, and matcha tea. Building upon these foundational types, tea manufacturers have created numerous unique varieties by combining different herbs and spices, brewed in hot water with or without milk. One relatively recent addition to the market is masala tea, which has garnered substantial popularity. To understand the immense appeal of this beverage in recent years, one can explore the online presence and extensive following of masala tea.
Also Read: Kadak Masala Chai Tea: Reasons to Opt for Auric Kadak Masala Chai
What is Masala Tea?
Masala tea is typically prepared by steeping black tea with an assortment of Indian herbs and spices, which constitute its essential ingredients. However, each tea manufacturer and tea connoisseur adds their own variation of spices, resulting in a distinct flavor profile for each cup of masala tea. Consequently, masala tea has become exceptionally popular in India and neighboring countries such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.
Masala tea can be found in numerous locations, including railway stations, street carts, bus stops, upscale tea shops, and even betel leaf shops. It is the most consumed beverage in these countries, often serving as a morning ritual to invigorate individuals and energize their body and mind. The diverse selection of masala tea ingredients contributes to the range of flavors available. Some individuals also enjoy concluding their day with a steaming cup of masala tea, providing a refreshing boost after a long day at work.
What are the essential masala tea ingredients?
Tea enthusiasts and connoisseurs worldwide enjoy experimenting with various tea types, herbs, spices, and sweeteners to create unique tea infusions. Consequently, numerous masala tea recipes can be found online. However, the core masala tea ingredients shared across all recipes are as follows:
Tea: When the British discovered tea in India, they established tea plantations in Assam, Darjeeling, and Mussoorie. While the original masala tea did not depend on or require the Camellia sinensis assamica tea plant, the introduction of this particular variety in India led to the adoption of Assam and Darjeeling black teas as the base for masala tea. However, certain green tea varieties, such as red rooibos and yerba mate, can also be utilized to prepare masala teas.
Spices and Herbs: The integral components of masala tea ingredients are the spices, collectively known as "masala," used in the preparation of masala tea. The specific masala blend varies depending on geographical location, climate, and cultural influences. Commonly employed masala tea ingredients include cardamom, ginger, black pepper, cloves, and cinnamon. Traditional masala tea recipes may also incorporate spices like vanilla, mace, star anise, fennel, and nutmeg. Recent variations of masala tea have included Western spices such as cacao, saffron, bay leaf, and allspice. A noteworthy variation known as kadak tea has gained popularity in the Middle East, particularly in countries like the UAE, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia. Kadak tea is made with evaporated milk and spices like cardamom and saffron, offering a robust and rich flavor.
Milk: While cow and buffalo milk are the primary dairy sources used in masala tea in India, lactose-intolerant masala tea enthusiasts are increasingly opting for alternative milk sources such as oat milk, almond milk, and coconut milk. The choice between brewing masala tea with pure milk or a milk-water combination is a matter of personal preference. However, using milk exclusively enhances the richness and creaminess of masala tea. Kadak tea, in particular, is often prepared solely with milk.
Sugar/Sweeteners/Other: White sugar is traditionally the most commonly employed sweetener in masala tea. Nevertheless, alternatives like brown sugar, honey, and jaggery can be substituted. During the winter season in northern India, jaggery masala tea, commonly referred to as "gudh ki chai," is a prevalent variety of masala tea.
Tips for Brewing Masala Tea
- Boil milk as a base for masala tea, such as kadak tea, to avoid any burnt odors and flavor changes.
- Use fresh, cold filtered water and cover the brewing vessel to retain heat when brewing with water.
- Refer to the label of the masala tea brand for specific brewing instructions, including temperatures and steeping times.
- Steep herbal masala teas like moringa tea for up to 15 minutes in half a cup of boiled water. For regular masala tea, steep for 5 minutes. Heat milk separately, stir it into the tea mixture with sweetener, strain, and enjoy.
- Avoid over-steeping masala tea to prevent bitterness. Taste the tea after the recommended steeping time and extend it if desired.
- Adjust the steeping temperature based on the type of masala tea. Steep green tea-based masala tea at 70-80 degrees Celsius for up to 5 minutes, and black tea-based masala tea at 90-100 degrees Celsius for 3-5 minutes.
Masala Tea Benefits
In addition to its aromatic qualities and diverse flavors, masala tea offers several benefits. Here are some of the benefits often attributed to masala tea:
Masala tea, brewed with natural ingredients like herbs and spices, is known to enhance the immune system. Key ingredients such as cinnamon and clove possess medicinal properties that, when combined, create a shield of immunity, helping to combat infections and promote overall well-being.
Anti-inflammatory in nature
Certain ingredients and spices found in masala tea, such as ginger and clove, exhibit anti-inflammatory properties. These properties can be particularly beneficial for individuals with inflammatory conditions like allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, polycystic ovarian syndrome, as well as joint and knee pain.
Masala tea ingredients such as cardamom, tulsi leaf, clove, and ginger aid in digestion, making it a helpful beverage for those experiencing poor digestion and constipation.
Black tea, a fundamental ingredient in masala tea, acts as a potent antioxidant. When combined with clove and cardamom, it assists in naturally lowering cholesterol levels without the need for medication. This reduction in cholesterol also helps prevent cardiovascular diseases by inhibiting plaque formation. Ginger, another masala tea ingredient, contributes to regulating blood pressure and heart rate by improving blood circulation.
Benefits of Moringa Tea
In addition to the benefits offered by masala tea, moringa tea, a herbal masala tea variant, possesses its own advantages. Moringa tea is rich in antioxidants and exhibits anti-inflammatory properties. Furthermore, it aids in combating malnutrition, particularly in regions where access to nutritious food and clean water is limited. Moringa leaves, often used in such areas, are packed with vitamins and minerals, effectively addressing hunger and nutritional deficiencies.
Moreover, moringa tea supports weight loss due to its low fat content and high concentration of essential vitamins and minerals, which assist in burning stored fat. Additionally, the ingredients in moringa tea are known to boost metabolism, promoting energy production rather than fat accumulation.
Also Read: Masala chai : A complete guide
Reduce blood sugar
An additional advantage of consuming moringa tea is its chlorogenic acid content, which acts as an antioxidant and aids in regulating blood sugar levels. Moringa leaves, abundant in Vitamin C, also possess the ability to lower blood sugar and blood pressure.
When conducting an online search for masala tea, you will encounter various brands and varieties. To determine the finest masala tea, it is advisable to review and assess customer feedback and ratings for different brands of masala tea available online. Given the array of options, selecting the optimal masala tea online holds significance.
Now that you have familiarized yourself with the plethora of choices for masala tea available online, which one is likely to grace your cup? Additionally, would you prefer the robust traditional kadak tea or a lighter milk-free variation of masala tea? Feel free to explore all your preferred masala tea ingredients; after all, tea is an essential part of life!
Don’t be afraid to try them all; after all… tea is life!
Authored By: Divya Shankar
About Author: Divya Shankar is a multifaceted content writer with 7+ years of experience. She has exclusive writing expertise in ayurveda.