The Masala Chai I am using is a blend of Assam and Darjeeling tea, ginger root, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, black pepper and cinnamon. Adivasi makes an amazing blend of this tea, which on its own is distinctive: http://www.adivasi.com/adivasi/retailProducts.php?linkid=17 You can mix up a blend of your own. To make a batch of your own tea blend, add about 3 oz. each of the Assam and Darjeeling tea leaves with 3 tbl. of dried finely grated ginger root, 4 crushed green cardamom pods , 6 ground clove heads, 1 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg, 6 ground peppercorns, and 1 tsp. ground cinnamon stick. Tailor the spices to your taste to make this distinctive; otherwise it may be too bland...or find Adivasi's blend! Use a heaping tablespoon or so for each serving. Usually you think of a chai as milky, but I like the use of lemon here instead. Add a varietal honey, Meyer's lemon and your favorite cognac brandy, and this winter warmer will soothe away whatever ails you. - Sagegreen —Sagegreen
Test Kitchen Notes
I love chai, so testing Sagegreen's Masala Chai Toddy wasn't a stretch for me, although I generally drink it with milk rather than lemon. I decided to use the chai I have at home rather than make a special blend, but I followed her instructions and made the tea very strong. I agreed with what she said--the flavors can get lost if you don't. I liked the citrus notes from the lemon and Cointreau and thought this made for a really delicious toddy. One word of caution, however: Strong tea means lots of caffeine--so don't make this toddy just before bedtime (as I did!), or you might have trouble sleeping. It is a wonderful warming drink, and I definitely recommend it as an Editors' Pick. —drbabs
milkweed honey (or linden, or your favoroite varietal honey)
Masala Chai brewed tea
Meyer's lemon juice
brandy (cognac-use your Rémy Martin if you have it), rum (dark Jamaican) or whiskey (bourbon), what you prefer
garnish of anise star, slender cinnamon stick and peel of Meyer's lemon
Spoon the honey in the bottom of your glass cup or mug, preferably a footed glass mug.
Pour in the steeped Masala Chai tea and stir.
Add the lemon juice.
Stir in the shot of your choice of brandy, rum, or whiskey, with a touch of Cointreau.
You can either knot your lemon peel around the cinnamon stick or coil it around, folding it in on one end to a crease in the stick. Add your cinnamon stick garnish with lemon peel and float in an anise star.