Everyone should have a signature drink. You know, to impress your friends and please your own palate as well. There are so many ways you can put your mark on your favorite beverage and claim a libation for your very own. Why not put your personal touch on a charming chai tea beverage that will warm souls and create memories?

This is the time of year when friends gather and family basks in the glow of the holiday season. Winter’s chill calls for a warm comfort cuppa. Even if you’re in a warmer clime you can enjoy a refreshingly spicy, icy Chai and envelop yourself in  a bit of cool comfort. Any way you serve Chai, it’s a delightful palate-pleaser.

Chai’s spicy sweet and heavenly aroma hints at the flavors of fall and winter that so many find enticingly comforting. Cold or hot, Chai Tea is a unique blend of the exotic and familiar. Spices like cinnamon and clove, ginger and anise call out to your fondest childhood memories, while cardamom, black teas, and peppercorns promise something of an adventure. That’s what makes Chai the ideal base from which to create your own version of this dynamic drink.

Chai Latte Redux

Here is an easy way to create a popular Chai favorite, with your own spin.  Using an automatic drip coffee maker, fill a filter with 2 bags of Masala Chai Tea into a coffee filter. Add your choice of:

1/2 tsp Ginger

1/4 tsp Allspice

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp Black Pepper

grated orange zest

Add 1 cup of water and brew.

In a medium saucepan on top of the stove mix together:

1 cup milk, dairy or plant-based

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp almond extract

Heat, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved. Add brewed tea and pour into 2 cups. Serve topped with whipped cream and a dusting of cinnamon. Place a cinnamon stick in cup as garnish.  Serves 2

Iced Orange Chai

Sweet citrus boosts the flavors of Chai in the most delicious way. Served over ice this Chai drink will quickly become your warm-weather favorite.

Bring 8 cups of water to a simmer in large saucepan. Add any combination of the following:

2 TB Fresh Ginger, grated

1 tsp Whole Black Peppercorn

Zest of 2 Oranges, (make sure not to get any of the bitter white part of the zest)

1 Cinnamon stick

Simmer on low for about 5-7 minutes.

Turn off heat and add

6 bags Masala Chai Tea

Steep for 4 minutes

Remove tea bags and add:

1/3 cup agave nectar

Allow to cool and strain into glass over ice. Serves 8

Hot Chai-colate

A special version of hot chocolate. This luscious and exotic version will warm you from head o toe. Big kids can add a splash of bourbon, if they like.

In a medium-lage saucepan combine:

5 cups milk (dairy or plant-based)

5 ounces mini-chocolate chips

Bring to a low simmer, whisking continually.  Remove from heat and add 3 bags Masala Chai Tea.

Steep for 4-5 minutes.

Serve immediately, topped with marshmallows or whipped topping.

Serves 6 Over 21

Chai’s unique blend of exotic spices lends itself perfectly to some exciting adult beverages. Whether you want to relax into a warm toddy before bed, or light your palate with a spiked iced version, Chai makes a wonderful cocktail mixer.

Spiked Chai Toddy

In medium saucepan combine:

5 Cups Milk (dairy or plant-based)

1 tsp Fresh Ginger grated

1 Star Anise

1 Cinnamon Stick

Bring to a simmer for 5 minutes, turn off heat and add:

4 bags Masala Chai Tea

1/3 cup Agave Nectar

Strain into heat-proof pitcher and add 1 cup of regular or spiced rum.

4 Servings

Spiked Iced Chai

First, make some cold-brew Masala Chai Tea:

2 quarts water

4 bags Masala Chai

Place in pitcher and refrigerate 8-12 hours.

Remove tea bags and add:

1 cup milk (dairy or plant-based)

1 tsp vanilla

8 ounces bourbon

Serve over ice with an orange wedge.

8 Servings

These are just a few of the ways you can create signature drinks using Masala Chai Tea. Go ahead and experiment with different flavors, or add to your Masala Chai to boost the spice and enhance your delight. Sweetened and blended with milk, served over ice, spiked or not, you’re sure to find a Chai Tea drink that you’ll claim as your own special-TEA!

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