Vanilla Chai Latte

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I did not used to be a tea-drinker.

I still do not drink tea very often, but I am working on that.  One of my favourite has become chai tea.  I had been working on finding the best tea (in tea bags) to buy, but then I thought: why not just make my own?

I’ve had some amazing chai lattes that I have bought at coffee shops (why aren’t there tea shops?), but they are usually overly sweet.  Again, why not just make my own?

Star anise.  So pretty to look at...not so pretty to eat.
Star anise. So pretty to look at…not so pretty to eat.
Cardamon, being de-podded by the brother.
Cardamon, being de-podded by the brother.

Well I can give you one very good reason:  the price of the ingredients is much higher than I am willing to pay at the moment.  As I am swiftly approaching the end of my college career and my wedding…my bank account is swiftly approaching zero.  It seems to be a race, and I sure hope “college-and-wedding” wins, but it is a close one.  I know, I know, I am sure that in the end, buying the ingredients and making my own is cheaper than buying coffee shop chai lattes.  However, I do not make a habit of buying chai lattes, so who knows.

Orange peel!
Orange peel!
All the spices in the milk, ready to boil!
All the spices in the milk, ready to boil!

Fortunately, I am home right now, and my brother also expressed an interest in making homemade chai tea.  So, my parents caved, and we got the ingredients.  I cut this recipe in half, and we got a’brewin’.  We used vanilla extract instead of vanilla beans and we only had ground nutmeg, not fresh nutmeg.

It was pretty good!  The smell was amazing.  However, I have a few ideas for improving the recipe for next time:

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1) Leave out the star anise.  I knew as soon as I smelled the strong, pungent licorice smell that it was a bad idea.  I just do not like that flavour, and it is unfortunately overwhelming.

2) Increase the ginger.  I love the flavour of ginger, and I did not notice any in this brew.

3) USE ALMOND MILK.  I do not like the flavour of milk.  However, I love almond milk, so I think this alone would improve the flavour by 20000%.

4) Increase the cinnamon.  A little.  I really like cinnamon, so why not have more?

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I can’t wait to make this again, with the improvements.  Mmm….




16 thoughts on “Vanilla Chai Latte

  1. Wait. What? No recipe? I too was tired of the inconsistency with the Chai Teas I was purchasing at a well known coffee store so I complained about it on Facebook and – bam! – one of my Nia Teacher friends gave me a recipe. When I went to the store to buy the ingredients I about yelped at the price of cardamom. Again, to FB with a complaint — bam! — one of my friends gave me some! The original recipe I was given I found a bit weak so I adjusted it. I also don’t strain mine as I like to ingest the spices to get the benefits. I also rarely have fresh ginger around so I just use ground, as with all the other ingredients. Mine recipe does not have anise nor orange peels in it. 🙂

    1. I used someone else’s recipe, so I provided the link, so they would get credit! If you click on “this recipe” where I talk about finding a recipe to use, it will take you to the recipe I used. And spice-giving friends sound like the best kind of friends! 🙂

      1. Oh, ha, ha, ha. On my monitor the link color almost blends right in so I missed it! Interesting. YES, spice giving friends are great. I was just grocery shopping and needed to replace some spices . . . YEEOWZA! I need to see about getting them from the Indian Market. Probably fresher and more affordable!

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