“Remember the tea kettle – it is always up to its neck in hot water, yet still sings”
Chai tea is the wonderful spiced drink from India. It’s a delicious brew of black tea combined with awesome spices such as cardamon pods, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and ginger along with moo milk, soy, rice or even coconut milk for an exotic twist. Yum!
I’ve been a lover of chai tea for nearly 20 years and even dare to consider myself a bit of a chai tea alchemist in the making. I brew it with love and enthusiasm and drink it with absolute pleasure.
Drink it hot in winter or as an iced tea in summer. And, if you happen to already be a lover of chai spices – then you are going to love the chai recipes I’ve discovered over the years. Imagine chai ice cream, chai cheesecake, chai muffins and chai creme caramel.
7 great reasons to drink chai tea:
Following are the health benefits for the most common spices that you’ll find in chai tea. Of course for maximum nutritional value and flavour its best to make your own from whole organic spices. This guarantees you are maximizing the vital life force energy of the spices.
I personally prefer to buy a good quality loose chai tea and add extra cardamon pods, cinnamon, ginger and grated nutmeg to my liking.
1 – Cardamom:
Stimulates the mind and gives clarity, increases appetite and soothes the mucous membranes. It helps relieve gas, heartburn and nausea, settles upset stomachs and is effective against allergies caused by dairy products.
I use green cardamon pods in my chai tea.
2 – Cinnamon:
Has long been used to fight colds, flu and sore throats. Also used as an antidote for diarrhea, stomach upsets and to help ease menstrual cramps. It is warming to your body and restorative to the nervous system.
Just smelling the wonderful odor of this sweet spice can boost brain activity!
3 – Cloves:
Believed to invigorate and restore, helps generate heat in the body, useful during the cold/flu season. Cloves soothe tooth ache, serve as a breath freshener, relieve nausea and can also be taken for gastric upsets.
4 – Star Anise:
In traditional Chinese medicine, star anise is prescribed as a digestive aid. More recently, Shikimic Acid, extracted from star anise, is one of the chief ingredients in the antiviral Tamiflu drug used to fight avian influenza.
Supports your digestion and can help relieve nausea. Helps moisten the airways and reduce the drying of the mucous membranes in the throat that is often associated with smoking. Also a great tonic for lack of sleep when taken in small doses.
Not found in many chai tea blends but it’s in one of my favourites mychai.
Loved for its exotic flavor and aroma. Also helps to improve the appetite and assists in digestion.
Ginger is commonly used as a digestive aid and contains compounds that ease motion sickness and nausea. These healing qualities can be attributed to its high Vitamin C and antioxidant content. This root is also useful in fighting heart disease, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. It is also excellent for improving sluggish circulation.
Chai tea recipes for muffins, ice-cream and more:
And just when you thought life couldn’t get any better here’s a list of wonderful things you can cook with your favourite chai spices. Enjoy.
Thanks to Leeanne Crawford from Mychai for helping me with the information on the healing and medicinal qualities of the spices.
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