It's the perfect time of year for warming foods and beverages, like a spicy chai, a warm cup of sunshine to brighten the cold, grey days. It's the time of year, we begin to melt into Kapha season, the dive of water and earth, easing our way from Vata season (air + ether). As we shift into this new season, finding warmth provides balance for both Vata and Kapha.
Ginger is one of my favorite spices this time of year to help ward of colds and ease aches and pains when my bones feel creaky. This chai recipes includes ginger as well as a few other spices to boost your immune system, warm the body, and support digestion.
Caffeine and I don't get along, so I leave it out, but feel free to add a little black tea in at the end of steeping if you'd like it! You can also make a big batch and keep it in a jar, minus the ginger, for easy chai making.
Spicy Midwinter Chai (makes 1 cup)
1 Cup water
1/2 Cup milk or milk alternative
6 - 7 cardamom pods (smashed)
1 thumb of ginger (chopped roughly or smashed with a mortar and pestle)
4 - 5 peppercorns
1/4 tsp turmeric
a 1/2 tsp of nettle (optional)
1 - 2 Tbsp honey, maple syrup or coconut sugar to taste
Add all the ingredients together and bring to a boil. Boil at least 5 minutes. Turn off, stir in the sweetener and let rest 5 minutes. Strain in a stainless steel strainer & serve!
**Note - this recipe is spicy! If you want less heat, use less ginger and if you want more try adding a pinch of cayenne to the mix!