We Indians call it Chai: Recipe

I have noticed a common menu item amongst coffee shops these days, it’s call Chai Tea Latte. Coming from a South Asian background, I always look at the name on the menu and just cringe a tad bit, why? Well because Chai means tea in several languages spoken across India! So the menu is literally saying “Tea Tea Latte”, does that still sound exotic and appealing to purchase? I don’t think so! A ‘Chai Tea Latte’ is actually commonly known as Masala Chai across India because of the blend of spices in black tea, and as for the latte portion, well Indian’s commonly make their tea with milk!

Now that you have a bit of  background on the drink, I have put together my favorite recipe for Masala Chai for you all to enjoy at home! My dad says that nothing beats the taste of fresh spices, so if you’re into drinking Masala Chai, stop buying the powder and take an extra 30 seconds to make it truly authentic!

Masala Chai Recipe ( mistakenly termed Chai Tea Latte)

Serving: 1 cup

Ingredients:

1/2 cup water

1 tea bag/ 1/2 tablespoon of Black Tea

1 tablespoon of honey (can be skipped if you are vegan/don’t like sweet tea)

4 crushed Cardamom

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon of fresh ginger (crushed)

1/2 cup of almond milk (or any milk of your choice)

Directions:

  1. Add the water in a pot along with the black tea, cardamom, cinnamon, honey, and ginger.
  2. Bring water to a boil, this allows the flavor of the spices to seep in
  3. Once the water begins to boil, wait at least one minute and then add you choice of milk (dairy or non-dairy) to the same pot (so you’re mixing the milk with the water and spices)
  4. Bring the milk to boil
  5. Once the boiling milk begins to rise, remove the pot from the stove
  6. Use a tea strainer and strain the tea into a cup
  7. Enjoy your delicious Masala Chai

 

This is an authentic way of making Masala Chai, for any questions on the directions feel free to comment!

Also, my brother and I are going Vegan for a week! His ultimate goal is to attain 200 grams of protein eating a Vegan diet. More on our journey and meal plans next week!

Enjoy,

Preety 🙂


 

 

Mumbai!

A few years back, I finally had the chance to explore the “New York City” of India, MUMBAI! The city is filled with people, literally takes 2 hours just to drive 20 miles! Filled with an abundance of diversity, rich cultures, and the Indian Film Industry, Mumbai is a place to add onto your “Places to visit when in India” list. There was one place that really stuck with me from the trip, and I do wish to go back and learn more about it. Where? Well it’s called Elephanta Island!

Elephanta Island is a small island located a short distance from the Mumbai mainland, you have to take a ferry from the Gateway of India. It’s about a 10-15 ferry ride where you get to see Indian Navy ships, and ships used for importing and exporting goods. Near the Gateway of India you can also explore the new and old Taj Hotel’s, architecture worth checking out!

Once you reach the island, there is a small train that takes you to the middle of the island where you will see LOTS of Monkey’s and Cows. WARNING, the Cow’s will chase you for food, and the Monkey’s will steal your Pepsi/other belongings (speaking from experience). Also, when taking photographs of the locals, be careful because many of them request money after you take the picture. The island is beautiful, away from the industrial and busy Mumbai life covered with greenery and the old Shiva temple. The large 20 foot Sadhashiva is the largest attraction of the area. The statue has three heads which signify the creator, destroyer, and preserver of the universe. I have posted a picture of the statue that I took, it was before I got my DSLR, and we had gone on a cloudy and rainy day. All the caves have stone carvings telling a story from Vedic culture, and symbolizing truth. I recommend hiring a tour guide to learn more, we had not done that and I was extremely confused. Also, when entering the stone temples in each cave be sure to remove your shoes! The temples are guarded, so they will be kind enough to remind you. As for navigating around the caves, you can keep your shoes on!  It’s not a well known tourist spot in the area, but I do recommend checking it out if you’re in the area!

In hope’s of Traveling soon,

Preety 🙂


 

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The gate that was once open

There are some memories we never forget,

Like the open blue gate that always permit.

The walls that once echoed with laughter,

Is now what we are sought after.

I’ll never forget sitting on the swing,

Waiting for what you would bring.

I miss Beeji’s delicious food,

Which always sparked the adventurous mood.

I’ll miss sleeping under the moonlight,

When everything seemed to be alright.

I’ll always remember your lessons,

for they left a marking impression.

You made our home shine bright,

now there is not even a dim light.

I wish you were here to set everything right,

then no one would dare to put up a fight.

I miss your embrace,

for they gave me a place..

A place to call home,

but now there is nothing but stones.


In memory of my loving grandparents, gone but never forgotten.

12/20/2006, 01/12/2015.

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India, 1947

August 15, 1947- India officially became independent.

The country in itself as grown so much in the past 68 years, it’s crazy to even imagine what India still has yet to accomplish in the future. A country that has given rise to the most influential individual’s our world has seen including: Swami Vivekanand, Subhas Chandra Bose, Mahatma Gandhi, Bhagat Singh, Jhansi ki Rani, and many more. Saying I come from an Indian background brings nothing but pride.

1947, the year of bloodshed. I’ve heard stories from my grandparents who were caught in the middle of the chaos between India and Pakistan. Forcefully being kicked out of their home, leaving everything behind and migrating to a new country with nothing but the clothes on their backs. My family was the lucky one of the few that was able to get out alive and together. During the partition, many lives had been taken, many families separated, and many homes destroyed. These are all stories for us, but they are horrific memories for those that lived through it.

Who knew there was light at the end of the tunnel that year after the religious disagreements and separating a country into two. Both India and Pakistan achieved independence only a day apart.

If you travel through India today, you’ll see a part of history in every corner you look. May it be the crumbling castles of the kings or the statue’s of the martyrs that gave the country a glimmer of hope. It’s a country filled with 28 states, 7 territories, 780 languages, 8 major religions, and 1.252 billion people, there is nothing about India that won’t amaze you.

The colors of Saffron, White, and Green shine bright in the eyes of all Indians because our nations success is our success. The chakra being our hard work around the clock to one day bring pride to our nation. With the courage of a lion, we Indian’s are capable of achieving any goal we make. We are hunters but also peacemakers, the qualities you’ll see passed down from our ancestors. We come from all different backgrounds, but we bleed the same colors. Nothing has stopped us before, and nothing ever well. Humara Bharat Mahan- OUR India is great.

Jai Hind.