Thursday, September 29, 2011
There are numerous blends on the store shelves, and even pre-mixed chai in containers. You can also find it at just about any corner cafe, usually billed as a 'chai latte'. I've had many versions of masala chai, but my favorite is when I make it at home. I prefer it light on the cardamom, but strong with ginger, cinnamon and cloves. Cooking it down with milk and sugar is a must for me. I usually use this version as a guide but tweak it depending on my mood. Endless recipes exist for masala chai, and many that claim to be the most authenic. It seems that many people in India have their own favorite recipe. I love this article where filmmaker Mira Nair explains her version of the brew. This article is from a few years ago, but is actually a great little read that I often think of while drinking chai. She refers to the chai as Matka Chai, which appears to mean the type of vessel it is served in, but I'm not completely sure. If anyone knows please enlighten me.
Chai lovers, how do you make yours? Do you prefer if hot or cold? Do you use a pre-made blend, or make your own? Do you brew it in a pot with the milk and sugar, or add it separately? The flavors are versatile and even work well in everything from ice cream to cookies. Feel free to share any favorite recipes for chai tea goodies!
Friday, September 23, 2011
While steeping an Irish Breakfast blend from The Boston Tea Company, it occurred to me that I enjoy reviewing teas, but I don't often read reviews from others. I will try a tea based on the type and quality, or merely out of curiosity. I try to keep an open mind to try as much as possible. I post tea reviews as an outlet for expression. I enjoy writing and thinking about tea as a personal experience. I like reading reviews that give me a bit of insight into the author, but I don't use the review as fact. Tastes are so different, and a flavor that one person picks up may be missed by another. Overall, tea reviews have helped me steer clear of products of poor quality and also remind me to try new teas that sound interesting. But I won't jugde a product just on a taster's notes alone. Preparation can vary as well, which may change the taste. I like to slightly oversteep my black teas because I prefer a stronger brew. Positive reviews certainly help spark my interest in a tea, but it's not the deciding factor.
Tea friends, what do you do? Do you read endless tea reviews for guidance, or do you have a different method for selecting teas? I think I've seen other bloggers discuss this issue in the past.
Posted by sara shacket at 2:30 PM
Monday, September 19, 2011
Friday, September 9, 2011
Thursday, September 1, 2011
I like to close my eyes and let the music affect my feelings. I'll let my mind wander, controlled by the rhythm and melody, occasionally anchored by a few lyrics. Often when I am observing a cup of tea, I'll let the flavor lead my mood to a new place, while I relax my body. I absorb the flavors similarly to how I digest music. Both become a form of spiritual meditation.
Tea may not cause the same dynamic range of emotions as listening to music, but it's an escape from reality. A secret experience. It also acts as a pause, to reflect on my life and family.
Both music and tea help me get through difficult situations, giving me the time to process thoughts and emotions.
What's your steep thought for the day?
Posted by sara shacket at 4:10 PM