Contrary to popular beliefs, it is not that hard to make your DIY tea blend at home, and you don’t have to go online or to your local tea shop to get tasteful and original tea blends. Real or herbal tea has never been easier to make; blending is not only easy to make, but it also gives you the opportunity to taste new flavors, and you can recreate the flavors you enjoy the most. This is the perfect gift for tea lovers, especially with Christmas around the corner. So, without further ado, let’s learn more about tea blends and how you can make your own blend at home.
The benefits of blending tea
For me, the best thing about blending your own tea is that you are making it to your own taste, and it can be as floral or herbal or sweet as you want. By doing this, you also know what you are putting in, in your tea blend, which might be more natural than those tea blends you buy in the grocery store. You can get this with 1 or 2 pure teas, herbs, flowers, and spices. With only these essential ingredients, you can make a plethora of different teas that you can enjoy from the comfort of your own home. At the peak of the pandemic last year, I got into blending my own tea, and I’ve been obsessed ever since. You can find most of the items to make your own blended teas at your local health food store, and you can even start to grow your herbs, dry fruits, and even dried fruits.
The basics of blending
For every blend, use one ingredient as a base; this is the starting point to making fabulous tea. The base is usually our real teas or some sort of herbs used to connect all the flavors together, creating a harmonious taste. Opt for fresh flavors like mint, sour lemons, strawberries, spearmint, hibiscus, or even lemongrass for summer teas. For the winter season, try warmer flavors that will warm you up from the inside and will make those harsh winters easier to face. For your winter blends, use your spices as they are the best to make you feel warm and boost up your immune system. Rooibos and black tea pair well with sweeter ingredients; opt for green teas for sour and fruity ingredients like lemon. Match flavors that go well together to get the tea of your dreams.
Homemade Masala Chai
Chai is the Indian word for tea, and for the sake of my sanity and the more fabulous good, stop saying Chai tea; it’s redundant; it means tea tea. The beauty of chai is that you can have it every day, and as a second-generation Indian kid who grew up in the Bronx, my mom would make chai every day and make a concoction that has been passed down from generation. Chai is always made with strong Assam tea, milk, and a blend of different spices. The spices are crushed in a mortar to release their flavors and are then added to the boiling tea. Come along with us and learn about how to make your own masala chai at home, which will definitely taste better than Starbucks chai latte.
- 6 to 7 cardamom
- 1 stick of cinnamon (about 2 inches)
- 3 cloves
- 3 to 5 tablespoons of Assam tea
- 1 teaspoon of peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon of Fennel seed
- A knob of ginger (or dry ginger if you don’t have fresh ones)
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup water
- Sugar (optional/to taste)
How to make your own masala chai that would make an Indian mother proud?
In a mortar and pestle, add all your spices, I don’t usually measure it and let my ancestors guide me for this part, but for the purpose of this blog, I measured it out for you guys. If you feel down or annoyed, let your rage out when grinding your spices. To a pot, add your water (use a 1 to 1 ratio of milk to water if you don’t want to make too much tea, but let’s be honest, there is nothing like too much tea) and let it boil. Add your crushed spices to the water when you see small bubbles and when the water is actively boiling, add your tea. Remember, the amount of tea you add will account for how strong or weak the tea is. Let the tea boil for two minutes in the pot, and after that, lower the heat. After that, add your cup of dairy or dairy-free milk direct to the pot and turn the heat p again. Let the mixture come to a rolling boil, and then turn it off. This is the time to add your sugar or sweetener of choice. Then all is left to do is strain your hot and delicious mixture. Remember, always aerate your tea to develop the flavor. Voila, you can have your own homemade masala chai that hits the spot during the harsh winter season in New York or wherever you hail from.
Sound off the comments section below and tell us your favorite tea blend.