Saturday, November 08, 2008

Spiced Chai Latte Cream

Chai Latte Cream (01) by MeetaK

Hello girls! So nice of you to drop by. Quickly come on in out of the cold. I've made steaming cups of chai. Let's get comfy on the sofa - I have some hot news to share.

Guess with whom I spent my evening on Thursday night? Yes - him again. I can't help it he makes me weak! An evening with him and it's just so full of action. From Italy to London to Austria all in one evening!

When he looks down at me with those piercing steel blue eyes I get goose bumps all over, when he talks in that refined accent my knees begin to wobble. Did you know he works for the British government? Of course! He even has a fancy employee ID number - 007. But I prefer James - James Bond. :-)

Do you want more chai? Talking about chai - did you know that chai has a fascinating legend?

Chai Latte Cream (03) by MeetaK

One of the legends of chai takes us to China more than 5000 years ago. It was said that the ruler Shen Nung was a sharp and sophisticated regent, an adept scientist and a skilled artist. Furthermore, he was provident and he placed high values that the water was boiled prior to consumption for sanitary reasons.

One day as Shen Nung and his royal court were traveling to a distant province they made a halt under some bushes and trees. As Nung's cook boiled water, a few dry leaves fell into the water and colored the water a deep rust color. Shen Nung however insisted on drinking the water. He found that it was not only refreshing but also invigorating and so, legend has it, the first tea was born.

This wonderful drink became very popular very quickly and many people appreciated the wonderful flavors and aromas. The tea leaves were given as gifts to dignified guests from all over the world. These guests brought the tea leaves back home so that their kings, monarchs and rulers too could experience the refreshing drink.

At the time in India the maharajas' preferred drink was a delicate mixture made out of warm milk, sugar, ginger, cardamom and other spices. One clever cook decided to surprise his maharaja with a special drink. He added a few of the tea leaves into the boiling milk and spice mixture creating an exquisite harmonic composition. The tea leaves had a cooling effect balancing the warming character the spices presented.

Today we enjoy this combination of a handful of black or green tea leaves with a touch of Indian spices as Chai.

Two different pronunciations have made their way into several other languages today. While the old Chinese character for tea was 茶, it was pronounced differently in various Chinese dialects.The word chai is derived from the the Mandarin spoken word chá (tscha). During the Zhou-Dynasty around 700 B.C the pronunciation for tea came from the old Chinese character 荼 tú (te), which became the derivative of our English word tea.

Tea (English), Tee (German), thé (French), teh (Indonesian) are all used in our modern day languages and mainly describes the drink using tea leaves and water as created by Nung's cook in our story. On the other hand the words chai (Hindi), Chya (Nepalese), cha (Japanese) and tschai (Russian) are still used to describe the spiced milk and tea mixture created by the Indian maharajas.

Fascinating isn't it? Oh I am sorry girls - you are all out of chai. Well I have a little surprise for you. All that story telling has got me craving for something sweet and spicy. So, how about a velvety chai latte cream? You'll need a spoon for the thick, rich and luscious chai latte cream, flavored with cardamom, cinnamon, black pepper, ginger and black tea leaves. The chai latte cream is spicy yet soothing and an invigorating dessert after a heavy dinner.

Oh look the boys are here. Good thing I have enough chai latte cream for everyone!

Chai Latte Cream (04) by MeetaK

Recipe: Spiced Chai Latte Cream

Ingredients
Printable version of recipe here.

1/2l + 1/8l whole milk
30g corn starch
100g heavy cream
5-7 tablespoons good quality black tea leaves
2 cinnamon sticks
4 cardamom pods, slightly crushed
10 black peppercorns, slightly crushed
3-4 cloves
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Cocoa powder

Electric milk whisk

Method

In a saucepan bring the 1/2l milk to a boil, then reduce heat and add the tea leaves, sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, peppercorns, cloves and fennel seeds. Simmer for approx. 1 minute.

Allow to steep for 30 minutes, then strain the milk discarding the tea leaves and spices. Pour the spiced chai milk back into the sauce pan and bring back to a gentle boil.

Meanwhile, mix about 3-4 tablespoons water with the corn starch in a cup and whisk to a thick, smooth mixture. Pour the corn starch mixture into the chai mixture and whisk until it thickens. Keep whisking for approx. 1-2 minutes until you get a pudding like consistency, smooth and creamy free from lumps.

Remove from heat and allow to cool, stirring occasionally.

Beat the cream until stiff, then gently fold into the spiced chai mixture. Divide into four tall glasses and place in the refrigerator to cool for 1-2 hours.

Before serving heat the 1/8l milk and with an electric milk whisk beat the milk until nice and frothy. Spoon the milk froth over the chai cream and sprinkle with some cocoa powder.

Serve the chai latte cream with almond cookies for a perfect dessert.

Helpful reads:

 


Verdict

Chai Latte Cream (02) by MeetaK

What would you like first? The verdict for the chai latte cream or for the evening with Bond!

Well I'll start with the chai latte cream - it's spicy and it's so different to any other pudding, cream, mousse type of dessert. The fact that there are only 2 tablespoons of sugar makes the chai latte cream not the typical sweet dessert but one that is filled with the spicy aromas of cinnamon, cardamom and co. Yes it's different - but it's bold, full bodied and simply delectable.

As for Quantum of Solace - while Daniel Craig was hotter, tougher and sexier the film lacked a strong story. In the end my heart belongs to someone else. I am not a sexy Bond girl but a spicy Wolff girl. Even though an evening with Bond is like a roller-coaster ride, I prefer getting comfy on the sofa with my Wolff and his pristine blue-green eyes, sending flutters up my spine and wrapped up in this safe strong arms, spooning spicy chai latte cream and talking into the wee hours of the morning.  

This is my entry to the current session of the Monthly Mingle where the theme is Coffee and Tea. If you all would like to join in you still have till Monday, November 10 to send your submissions by then. There have been several great looking creations and this is going to be an exciting roundup!

You might like these creamy desserts from WFLH:

ChocPotsCreme 06 framed PersimmonVerrines 04 SweetPotatoFlan 02
Chocolate Chile Pots De Crème Persimmon Honey Nut Yogurt Verrines Sweet Potato Flan

From around the blogs:

Chocolate Chai Spice Cupcake - Cupcake Bakeshop
Chai Spiced Oatmeal - 80 Breakfasts
Creamy Chai Cheesecake - Zoe Bakes

 

Daily Tiffin Reading Tip:

 


All photographs and written content on What's For Lunch, Honey? © 2006-2008 Meeta Khurana unless otherwise indicated. | All rights reserved | Please Ask First

37 comments :

  1. You should seriously take up some fictional writing. I wanted to read more about James :)

    Will email you soon.

    Love and hugs.

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  2. I'm really impressed wit the ease of this sweet Meeta...just stunning. Should we serve it "shaken or stirred"? ...LOL

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  3. You just made me want to make that, and I'm at work, which makes it difficult :( And those cookies - when do we find out about those gems?

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  4. Love the pic background! lovely colours :)

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  5. Dang that was fun Meeta!!

    And the Chai Latte Cream looks wonderful. Great to have during the holidays!

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  6. Lovely Post Meeta.Nice info on history of tea.I drink tea and tea only,but thanks to you I am now addicted to coffee cookies.
    BTW,for me,Pierce Brosnan is the ultimate Bond.Daniel Craig is nothing compared to him.I have stopped watching Bond movies.Well thats just my story.Any movie with this latte is fine. :D

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  7. Enjoyed the write up Meeta, I really felt I had dropped by your home and had check to see if my Pj's were alright :P
    The Chai latte sounds delectable, I'm going to make some for myself tonight, I can feel the warmth in the spices you've chosen.

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  8. very interesting post, Meeta...i might try this sometime ....

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  9. Chai latte looks deliious, corn starch would have made the chai thicker. Hope you had fun with 007

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  10. :) You are a born story teller Meeta! James is no match for this spicy Chai Latte Cream.

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  11. What a gorgeous picture..not to mention the spiced chai latte cream.

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  12. Meeta... you forgot tea in Arabic, شاي , which is pronounced with more of a sh sound - shai :)
    I first got hooked on this drink through Starbucks, but the homemade latte cream version sounds so much better!

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  13. You are so funny. James Bond is swoon worthy, as I'm sure your chai is also.

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  14. Ha ha, great read Meeta, with chai latte to match. All I can say is WOW!!!

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  15. Wow... Now, I'm weak in the knees at the sight of that chai latte cream! Just too luscious!! :)

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  16. Such interesting information about the ruler Shen Nung - your stories are impeccable!! And that drink??? TO-DIE-FOR!!! :-D

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  17. I'd very happily choose Chai Latte Cream over Bond anyday. I have my very own Bond at home.:)

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  18. I like the sound of that combo of spices. Great photos!

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  19. that looks right up my alley. love chai and i quite adore creamy drinks! :)

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  20. Hey Meeta,

    Have sent you a mail. Hope u got it. Sent you 4 days ago :)

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  21. Hej, Meeta

    Time flies so quickly, it is definitely terribly difficult to keep up with you! Today has a little special errand though. I want to drop by and inform you that MooseAbout is now a private site. But if you still wish to try the macarons, the templates for them can be found in the link below. So, I hope they would be of some help! ;)

    Link: http://mooseabout.com/documents/mcpt.pdf
    This link will be automatically removed a month from today.

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  22. Interesting chai background...who knew. Looks like a great way to spend an afternoon...chai and cookies.

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  23. Would like to invite you for a coffee at My blog
    Pls join me :)

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  24. wow really interesting! enjoyed reading it and I m tryiong it too. Seems delicious :)

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  25. Your blog is super. So are your photographies. They make me hungry. I have spent a nice moment when seeing them. Thanks a lot.

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  26. I'm sorry I missed participating in this event but glad I got to read this entertaining and informative post - it will make me feel better next time detritus lands in my drink :-)

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  27. looks waaaaaay better than the ones I get at Starbucks.

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  28. Oh this is just sublime!!! You know I love chai spices ;) This sounds like something that would make all life's problems go away! :)

    Now it's my turn with James...I am literally on my way out to watch that movie!

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  29. Isn't Daniel Craig the dishiest thing........swoon. I still have to wait till Friday to catch the movie :(

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  30. You know I have never made this from scratch, but now is the time. Thanks for this!

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  31. your opening had me hooked meeta, I too wanted to know more... The chai latte cream looks great!

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  32. The chai session was fun! Sent me back to a few years ago when my girl friends and I would meet everyday for a session of chai after classes.
    The chai latte looks fantabulous!

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  33. Wonderfully informative and lovely post, Meeta! Fabulous photographs, as usual.

    I sent you my details for the mingle, have you received it?

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  34. Thanks everyone for your lovely comments! Glad you are liking this "different" type of dessert.

    Peter G - LOL! This one can be eaten anyway you prefer!

    Curry Leaf - While Brosnan was suave, sophisticated and spectacular as Bond, I prefer Craig as Bond a bit more. He is not perfect, sexy and although tough still has a vulnerable side. I like that!

    Helena - I realized that. Thanks for the link. I think I already saved those. But good to know if I loose them!

    Tony - yes - I did forget the Arabic word. I remember drinking chai latte often in starbucks and it is a take on that drink!

    Hugs to all!

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  35. Hi u have a wonderful blog, amazing recipes
    Seeing ur love for cooking i wanted to tag u for a bread baking event which is a fund raiser for africa, but before doing so wanted to ask u if its ok to do so?
    Would appreciate your reply soon.
    Thanks.

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  36. i love that these look just like a drink (with foamy top and all) but that they're little cream pots. very stylish.

    that wolff of yours sounds pretty good too :)

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Thank you for visiting What's For Lunch, Honey? and taking time to browse through my recipes, listen to my ramblings and enjoy my photographs. I appreciate all your comments, feedback and input. I will answer your questions to my best knowledge and respond to your comments as soon as possible.

In the meantime I hope you enjoy your stay here and that I was able to make this an experience for your senses.

Hugs
Meeta