- Vegan Chai Latte
Traditionally in India, chai was an herbal concoction – used in Ayurvedic medicine and adapted with herbs and spices to soothe a particular ailment. Black tea only became part of chai after the British began growing tea in India. With that in mind, we created a 15 spice herbal chai - Vintage Chai - with warming, pungent and heating qualities, which serve to balance out the cool, heavy, sweet qualities of cow milk, which is what is traditionally used in chai.
According to Ayurveda, the winter season is the time to slow down and reserve nutrition stores, with an immune system ready to conquer the year ahead. It recommends a counterbalancing lifestyle approach to help prevent imbalances: in the winter, balance the cold with warmth and vice versa.
Chai provides the body with nutrition and supports the body’s use of that nutrition. It is typically taken away from food at the mid-afternoon between lunch and dinner. This carries you through that slump or sugar-craving that may arise at this time. It is often served with cow milk and sugar. To understand why this is done, you can consider that chai is a mid-meal offering that will provide protein and fats in the milk, carbohydrates in the sugar, digestive spices to free up the nutrition quickly and stimulants to the nervous system.
Although it contains significant health benefits, many people avoid black tea because of its caffeine levels. Our Vintage Chai is the perfect, caffeine-free alternative that generates internal warmth and keeps the digestive fire burning. The pungency of spices like cardamom, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, tulsi can ease the stagnation that can stem from the cold, supporting movement and flexibility. The rich, enlivening aroma of saffron awakens the senses, even on those gray days when the sun seems to have disappeared.
Our Vegan Chai Latte recipe will stimulate your energy, while simultaneously grounding you and keeping you stable, less anxious, and comforted:
2-3 teabags or 5-10g loose leaf Vintage Chai
1-1.5 cup water
3/4 cup almond milk / coconut milk / oat milk / soy milk
1 teaspoon sweetener of choice
1. In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, boil the tea in water. Stir regularly until the mixture is piping hot. Once the tea has steeped for 5 minutes, pour them through a fine mesh strainer so that just the concentrate remains or pour non-dairy milk over the tea concentrate. To get a nice frothy foam on our milk, we heat it up to a scald which is just before boiling point, then transfer the milk to a frother. For loose leaf tea, you will require a strainer.
2. Your choice in milk substitute and the type of sweetener used in your chai are entirely up to your taste preferences; but we find that coconut or almond milk with jaggery enhance the taste profile of our Vintage Chai.
3. We highly recommend getting a milk frother. However, if you have a French press, those work great for frothing milk. Just pour your warm milk into the French press. Pump it up and down a few times and you’ll have delicious latte-quality frothed milk.
4. Garnish your cup with cinnamon or star anise.