Saturday, November 6, 2010

The Yoga of Cooking

Well, we're nearing the end of the 40 day challenge.  I'll update you with the final report soon, but in the meantime, enjoy this fall-like zenny recipe:

Chai Tea Concentrate
created by Liz Schildkret after some experimentation and failure.
3 cups water (filtered only if your tap water tastes nasty... like mine does)
1tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Ginger
sprinkle of ground cloves
2 Bay leaves
LOTS of honey (I use the entire bear's head...)
1tbs vanilla
3 Chai Teabags (I use tazo, but Stash is also good.  You can also use plain black tea bags or even decaf if you're really crazy.  I like the extra spice.)
Milk or soymilk

1.  Bring 3 cups of water to boil in a medium saucepan.  Reduce to a simmer and add the tea bags (Note: do not turn the heat completely off, if you do, the reduction process will take forever.)  Stir lightly while the tea steeps, until the water turns a deep brown color.

2.  Add the spices and the amount of honey that tastes good to you.  If you don't have a sweet tooth, don't use much honey. 

3.  Get ready for your house to smell like Christmas.

4.  Allow mixture to simmer at medium heat for 20-30 minutes stirring occasionally.  The mixture should turn a bit syrupy/soupy when it's finished.  Here's where the Zen comes in.   If you're into meditation, I imagine meditating while stirring the chai would be an amazing experience.

5.  Turn off the heat and stir in the vanilla. 

6.  Try not to drink the entire mixture when you add the vanilla.  It'll smell delicious.

7.  Pour some of the mixture into a mug or cup and add milk or soymilk to taste.  Enjoy heated (in the microwave) or iced.

8. Pour the rest of your chai concentrate into a glass bottle and store in the fridge to satisfy future chai cravings.  (Note: to avoid having to purchase a funnel, try pouring your mixture into a teapot, THEN into your glass bottle.  As a bonus, your next cup of tea will taste like chai :) )

If you try the recipe, let me know how it turns out.  The proportions aren't exact at all and I experimented a lot to find the combination I really like.  Feel free to add or take away ingredients... and then tell me what changes you make!!

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