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Cashew Milk Chai Latte

Cashew Milk Chai Latte

My son has developed “a thing” for chai so I wanted to create one that has less sugar but all the complex flavors that make up the typical aromatic spice blend. In researching, it turns out that chai blends are as myriad as there are people who make them, but they are usually a mixture of sweet (cinnamon), pungent (cloves) and peppery (um, pepper) and spicy (ginger). Here is my blend, combined with homemade cashew milk to round out the flavorful drink. I chose cashew milk because it is easy to make in one’s blender and it also adds the thick, creamy luxury such a drink deserves. To simplify this recipe even more, simply use store-bought non-dairy milk, a chai blend from a spice shop or tea bags with the blend already in them. (By the way, don’t say chai tea because it’s redundant: chai means “tea” in many Eurasian languages; technically what we are referring to here is masala tea, which refers to a spiced milk tea.) Feel free also to add more sweetener – or less – and vary the kind of sweetener you use. I prefer chai that is less sweet so that is how this recipe is written. Note: you will need a spice grinder or another devise for grinding spices in this recipe.

4 servings

Cashew Milk Chai Latte

Cashew Milk
1 cup cashews, soaked 2 hours or more
4 cups water
4 tablespoons pure maple syrup
4 teaspoons vanilla

Masala chai blend
6 whole black peppercorns
8 cardamom pods
1 whole nutmeg
8 whole allspice
8 whole cloves
2 cinnamon sticks, plus more for garnish
2-inch piece fresh ginger, thinly sliced
4 teaspoons black tea in a tea ball

After soaking, drain the cashews and blend with the water, maple syrup and vanilla until smooth. A high-speed blender works best but is not necessary.

Add your chai blend to a spice grinder and grind until coarse. It doesn’t have to be a powder; you just want them crushed enough to release the fragrances.

Start four cups of water boiling. Add the tea ball and ginger. Allow to boil for a couple of minutes, then add the spice blend. Simmer for five to ten minutes. Strain with a colander and reserve the water.

In a medium saucepan, heat the cashew milk over medium high and add the tea water. Heat through for a couple of minutes and whisk for some frothy action. Pour and garnish with ground cinnamon.

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