However, one of the most popular versions of tea all over the country is masala chai. Masala chai is also known as kadak chai, and it is usually made by mixing different ingredients such as sugar, spices and milk with tea and then brewing it. You can also make masala chai by using various chai masala powders available in the market. Masala chai recipes are very versatile and can be easily changed to fit your preferences. You can have masala chai all year round or save it for the monsoon season.
Taste is not the only reason chai masala powders are so popular in the country. Masala chai also has many benefits that make it everyone’s favourite. Also read
Benefits of Masala Chai
Here are some of the chai masala powder and masala chai benefits that make it stand out from the crowd:
Masala chai is an excellent beverage to improve digestion and regulate your digestive system. Spices used to make chai masala powder, such as ginger and black pepper, are strong spices and are responsible for bettering your digestion. Ginger and black pepper help produce digestive enzymes responsible for processing and breaking down fats and proteins.
Some spices added to the chai masala powder, such as cloves and ginger, have anti-inflammatory properties. The inflammatory nature of cloves and ginger in masala chai help relieve severe pain by increasing the blood circulation inside your body. The increased circulation then delivers blood cells rich in oxygen to the areas with pain easing the ache.
Relieves Cold Symptoms
Masala chai and chai masala powder have antifungal, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties that strengthen your immune system. Adding spices like elaichi, cloves, ginger, and cinnamon to your masala chai or the chai masala powder can further help you fight against flu symptoms such as cough, runny nose, nasal congestion, etc. Drinking masala chai twice every day can relieve your flu symptoms and help you recover faster.
Helpful in Fatigue
Masala chai and chai masala powder can be catalytic in revitalising your body. Kadak chai contains caffeine which helps stimulate the central nervous system improving your alertness. The tannins in tea and the caffeine affect the body together, heightening your energy levels.
Effective in Controlling Blood Pressure
Black tea, the main ingredient of the kadak chai recipe, contains antioxidant properties that can help remedy your high blood pressure. The tannins in tea have dilating effect that can also be beneficial in regulating the heart rate and blood pressure.
Masala chai benefits also include controlling diabetes. The spices in masala chai and chai masala powder are effective in augmenting the insulin sensitivity in your body. Drinking masala chai every day can help your body get used to handling glucose more effectively.
Can Prevent Cancer
Drinking masala chai every day can help improve your immune system. Spices like cinnamon and clove can help reinforce your immunity. Cancerous cells form when rogue cells start multiplying uncontrollably and damage the other cells. Spices included in the chai masala powder, such as cardamom, ginger, cinnamon etc. have properties that can help prevent cancer. Drinking masala chai using a kadak chai recipe daily can help your immune system stay alert against cancerous cells and antigens.
How to Make Masala Chai?
There are many kadak chai recipes with variations that will make your day. There are two ways to make masala chai. One way includes making it with store-bought chai masala powder, and the other way includes making your chai masala powder at home with additional spices. Below are some kadak chai recipes that you can make at home and experience the revitalising abilities of chai masala powder.
- You need milk, water, sugar, tea leaves, cinnamon, black pepper, cloves, ginger, and fennel seeds for this kadak chai recipe. You can modify this kadak chai recipe by using star anise or lemongrass. There are no restrictions on what kind of milk you can use to make masala chai. Both dairy and non-dairy milk can be used to make masala chai.
Remember to grate the ginger and pound the spices beforehand to save time. Preparing masala chai for yourself or guests is not very difficult. One needs to keep in mind a few things to not mess up the consistency of the tea. You will first need to pour water into a pan and put it on the stove.
Turn on the stove and add the garlic that you crushed earlier into the water while it is heating. While the water is heating, lightly pound cloves, cinnamon, star anise, lemongrass, and black pepper to release their flavours. Add these lightly pounded spices into the water after it boils.
Additionally, you can also add tulsi leaves or mint to the water at this stage. Now add tea leaves and let them simmer in the water for some time. You can let the tea leaves cook for as long as you want as per your personal preference. Usually, letting the leaves simmer for a long period makes the tea more bitter and stronger, and letting the leaves simmer for a shorter time makes the tea light and sweet.
You must let the tea leaves steep for a while so that flavours are released from it into the tea. Turn off the heat once your masala chai is made to your liking. Let the masala chai sit for a few minutes before enjoying it with your favourite morning or evening snack. You can make alterations to this kadak chai recipe to suit your needs.
- The second kadak chai recipe is for people who like drinking masala chai frequently and regularly. To save time, you can make your chai masala powder at home and store it for recurrent use, or you can use a store-bought chai masala powder and make masala chai whenever you want according to your convenience.
Making your chai masala powder is more cost-efficient, and it also lets you pick and choose what spices you want in your masala chai. The best part about using chai masala powder, whether homemade or store-bought, is that you can store it and use it whenever you want to. Many people make chai masala powder in large quantities so that they can use it whenever they desire, but many make it in smaller quantities.
You can decide the quantity based on your preference. Many people also focus on the texture of the chai masala powder and keep it coarse so that it can get strained easily with a sieve.
- The main ingredients you will need to make your chai masala powder for this kadak chai recipe are cloves, fennel, pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon, tulsi seeds and dry ginger. Put fennel seeds, cloves and cardamom in a heavy-bottomed pan and roast the mixture on a stove. Once the mixture becomes aromatic, keep it aside and roast the ginger separately.
Next in this kadak chai recipe, roast tulsi seeds and nutmeg and keep all the mixtures aside and let them cool for a bit. Once the mixture is cool, you can add it to a blender and keep blending till you see the mixture form a coarse texture. Once done, take the chai masala powder out of the lender and store it in an air-tight container.
- Now you just have to add your homemade chai masala powder to a saucepan and add 4 tsp tea, and two cups of water into it. Once the water boils, add one cup of milk and then add sugar as per your convenience. Boil the chai and once done, strain the masala chai into a cup.
Alternatively, you can also simply replace the homemade chai masala powder with store-bought chai masala powder in this kadak chai recipe and have similar results.
Masala Chai is considered the best type of chai because it is not just healthy but is also a treat for your taste buds. Green tea has antioxidants, polyphenols and flavonoids, that help boost your immunity. Black tea has polyphenols that help in the protection of our cells and DNA. Masala chai doesn’t just have all of these properties but is also easy to make and delicious. Masala chai has soothed millions of Indians and tops it all by being an allrounder.
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Authored by: Bhavishya Pahwa
About the Author: Bhavishya Pahwa is a budding writer who has always confided in a pen. He believes that art is a cure-all and that introspection followed by writing can add to the sanity of the world.