Crystalline Trees and Warm Spicy Chai
There was an ice storm last night, and we awoke this morning to glittering, sparkly trees against a clear blue sky.
I know ice storms aren’t the greatest for driving, scraping your car off, power outages, etc. — but I can’t help but be overjoyed at the magical, crystalline world that they create.
There’s an ethereal quality to these types of mornings that makes them all the more beautiful…a few hours under the sun and the ice will have melted, but I’ll have the memory of a walk in the woods when all is silent and glittering.
And the perfect accompaniment to a walk in the glittering cold woods is coming home to a cup of homemade, warming, spicy chai tea.
Warm, Spicy Chai (serves 1)
I like to make my chai with all milk, but if you prefer, you can make it with water and then add a splash of milk with the honey.
1 1/2 – 2 cups milk
1 bag darjeeling tea (or other black tea)
1 small knob (about 1/2 inch) of fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
4 cardamom pods
4 whole cloves
4 whole peppercorns
1 small piece of cinnamon stick, about 2 inches
honey, to taste
Lightly bruise the cardamom pods and whole cloves with a pestle or the side of a chef’s knife. Bring the milk, cardamom pods, ginger slices, whole peppercorns, cinnamon stick, and whole cloves to a simmer over medium heat in a saucepan. Once it reaches a simmer, turn off the heat and add the teabag. Let the mixture steep for about 7-10 minutes, until it’s the strength you like, then strain the whole mixture into a mug. Sweeten with honey to taste.