The history of the chai we know today is, appropriately, a blend of varying cultures, traditions and spices.
The word 'chai' is actually the Hindi word for 'tea'. But original versions of chai contained no actual tea leaves. Chai was a blend of spices meant to be healing in the traditional Indian medicine practice of Ayurveda.
And there was no one recipe for a chai beverage. Any one cup of chai varied in ingredients and flavor based on the country or town or family it originated in.
Chai has reached unprecedented popularity as a beverage in Western culture and is on the menu in nearly every coffee shop. While you can easily find many different 'chai tea' mixtures containing spices and tea, Savory Spice Shop’s blend of Chai Spices harkens to the original form of chai and contains only spices.
While Savory Spice Shop has a recipe for chai 'tea' made with their Chai Spices, they also provide ideas to take chai out of the teacup and infuse its warm, spicy flavors into sweet and savory dishes.
What better way to kick off summer than with Savory Spice Shop’s recipe for Vanilla Chai Ice Cream?
Vanilla Chai Ice Cream
Recipe by Kelly Landgraf, Savory Spice Shop—Southlands/Aurora, CO and reprinted here with permission from Savory Spice Shop.
2 cups half and half
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup plus 3 Tbsp. sugar
3 Tbsp. vanilla bean powder (from Savory Spice Shop)
4 Tbsp. Chai Spices (from Savory Spice Shop)
1 vanilla bean
Mix all ingredients together in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat (do not boil). Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Strain and place reserved liquid in refrigerator until well chilled. Process in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions. Freeze until ready to serve. Makes 1 quart.
Visit Savory Spice Shop’s website for an accompanying recipe for Chai Caramel Sauce.
Hungry for Chai Spices? Pick some up at any one of Savory Spice Shop's seven locations in Colorado: Colorado Springs, Fort Collins, Boulder, Platte Street/Denver, Lowry/Denver, Main Street/Littleton and Southlands/Aurora. Visit Savory's website for detailed location information.
Disclaimer: Author of this article works for Savory Spice Shop testing and writing recipes.
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