Chai – or a great big hug from the Indian nanna you never had

4 Nov

Chai always reminds Man Woman of Sydney cafes, complaining about the poor quality, inevitably-dripping pots that chai would invariably be served in and comparing the various different versions of the Indian tea served in different cafes across the thin sliver of the inner west where we used to hang out.

Because chai is so uncommon in England – or if somewhere serves it, it’s often from a syrup or some such travesty – I’ve particularly enjoyed making it at home, especially as the weather gets cooler.

And, in the absence of a big fat Indian nanna to hug me during these darker months, I have chai.


  • 1 bag/tsp of black or rooibos tea
  • 1 cardamon pod, shelled
  • 3-4 black pepper corns
  • 1 -2 cloves
  • 3 small slices of ginger
  • 1/2 stick of cinnamon
  • Honey
  • Milk

Cheats version

Put cloves, cardamon and peppercorns into a tea strainer, with either bag or spoonful of tea. Throw in cinnamon, ginger and honey. Add hot water and milk.

Proper stuff

Bring water to boil with the spices and tea to infuse. Reduce heat. Add milk, bring to boil again.

Pour into mug with honey.

Estimated cost: pennies.


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