Chai Concentrate & Chai Latte

Chai tea is just one of those things that make you feel warm. Similar to a puppy sleeping next to you, or a nice bowl of soup. When I woke up today, it was raining and cold outside. Not exactly the kind of weather I wash hoping for on my Christmas break, but there is still hope for a white christmas. Because the weather was so dreary, I decided to make some chai tea concentrate to make some delicious chai lattes. A hot beverage is my favourite way to warm up and I thought I would share this recipe with all of you!

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Photo by Grace Holyoke (2019)

This recipe is great because the batch makes enough for about 3 cups of the concentrate which ends up being a lot of chai tea lattes for you to enjoy! Just store it in the fridge, and when it is time to use, warm it up in the microwave or on the stovetop or you can have it over ice as an iced latte.

When making the chai latte, a good ratio is 1:1 concentrate to your dairy/non-diary milk of choice. I used warm almond milk for my latte, but anything you like would be just perfect.

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Photo by Grace Holyoke (2019)

I like my chai tea a little bit spicy, so I add black peppercorns to the mixture. If you don’t want it as spicy, just simply omit the pepper! I have a few people close to me who are currently on the keto diet. The original recipe for this chai concentrate called for 1/2 cup of sugar and so I did not add it to accommodate those people. It doesn’t change the strength or spiciness of the concentrate, and it’s easy to just add some honey, sugar, agave or even maple syrup to your latte. For people on the keto diet- a few drops of stevia extract would do the trick. I usually add the sweetener to the concentrate while it is hot and dissolve it before adding my milk. I find it just mixes better that way.

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I topped my chai latte with coconut whip, which is a nice vegan/keto alternative to regular whipping cream. I just placed a can of coconut milk in the fridge for about 20 minutes and when I took it out and opened the can, the thickened cream will be on the top. I just whisk this up until it is thick like whipping cream and put a dollop on top. This coconut whip actually has some natural sweetness, so if you don’t like your chai tea too sweet, maybe add less sweetener if you are putting some of this delicious cream on top.

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Photo by Grace Holyoke (2019)

For finishing touches, I added a sprinkle of cinnamon and a small mini gingerbread house. I had lots of leftover gingerbread dough from my gingerbread village cake (Click Here for the Recipe) so I made these tiny little gingerbread houses to sit on the side of the mug. They take a but of patience, but they are so cute! I thought it was a sweet way of pairing some holiday baked treats with one of my favourite warm drinks.

What do you like to drink on a cold, rainy day? Comment down below your favourite warm beverage!

Cheers!

Grace Eveline

Chai Concentrate

Ingredients

  • 4½ cups water
  • 8 organic black tea bags
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 vanilla bean, split in half (or 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract added at the very end)
  • 1 – 3-inch section of fresh ginger, cut into pieces
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 8 cardamom pods
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 2 whole star anise pods
  • ½ teaspoon of whole black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey (optional, leave off to make vegan, if you want it to be sweeter without the honey, add a bit more sugar in at the beginning)

Instructions

  1. Prepare the teabags by removing any tags if there are any and tying them all together. Prepare the spices, vanilla bean and orange zest by laying them in your cheesecloth, I leave my cinnamon sticks out to make the little pouch of spices a bit more compact. Tie the cheesecloth pouch shut with a small piece of kitchen twine. If you leave the cinnamon sticks out, just tie them together with kitchen twine.
    • If you don’t wish to use cheesecloth, you will just add all of your spices directly to the pan when the time comes and strain them out after.
  2. Add the water and sugar to a medium sized saucepan and bring to a boil over a medium-high heat. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer and put in the tea bags, cheesecloth pouch and cinnamon sticks. Simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat strain the concentrate through a sieve or just remove the tea bags, cheesecloth pouch and cinnamon sticks. At this point if you want a bit more sweetness you can add a tablespoon of honey, stir to dissolve. I don’t always do this, but it is a really nice touch. Additionally, if you didn’t use a whole vanilla bean, add your vanilla extract now. Stir to combine.
  4. Allow the mixture to cool before pouring it into an airtight jar or container. This amount fits perfectly into a 1-quart mason jar. Be sure your tea is fully cooled before placing in the fridge. Store in the refrigerator for up to one week.

 

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