Let’s start off by safely saying if there is one thing we can not live without here at Mountain & Moon it’s a delicious cup of tea. Now the type of tea we like to drink really depends on which whimsical mood we may be in at the time, so we definitely keep a wide selection on hand.
Most days we intensely miss the calls of the Indian chai wallah, posted on every little street corner, ‘chai chai garam chai’ he calls whilst serving up steaming hot cups of sweet and spiced milky tea from a copper pot. And we are sure you have those days just like us, when your mind begins to wander, and you are desperately in need of an afternoon pick me up or simply just need to stimulate the imagination… Yes, we believe all of these cravings can be satisfied with a cup of Masala Chai. Not only through our taste buds, but through smell, touch and sight. Here is how we take an ordinary cup of tea in the afternoon and turn it into an exotic spice infused escape from our daily grind. We call it Chai Time.
Create an ambiance –We know its easier said then done (especially if you’re not at home or you work in an office) so keep in mind you can be as over the top or as simple as you like. For us the process of putting it together is just as important as the first sip, so to begin we first arrange a tray with all the ingredients we use in making the tea. Not only does this step let our hands play with whole spices like cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger and more, but it’s the smells that fill the air and the textures on the plate that have an intoxicating effect on ones senses. Now for those of you who don’t have access to the array of goods needed for our Indian tea ceremony your alternatives can included something as simple as adding a natural scented candle or incense to your work space… just a little something to help you escape that afternoon slump.
Infusion of spices– With one half of Mountain & Moon being Indian, we find the most important things in the Indian culture are family, food and faith. So when referring to the food, spices lie at the soul of an Indian kitchen and represent the timeless treasures and traditions that we can so easily integrate into an otherwise ordinary cup of tea.
You will need:
- 10 pieces of dry ginger
- 15 cardamoms
- 7 cloves
- 8 black pepper corns
- 3 cinnamon stick
- pinch of saffron
- 1 whole star anise
- 2 teaspoons of lose black tea leaves
- 1 cup of Milk
- 1 cup of Water
We definitely recommend you play around with the spices, exclude one, add more of another depending on the flavors you like most. Also when you’re on the move, keep a little jar of the spice mix in your bag and add a little sprinkling of it to your tea where ever you may be. The flavor won’t be as strong as when you brew it, but it will give you that exotic Masala kick you need to wake up your senses.