Every once in a while I need a kick in the pants to get me going and Heather at Eating for One gave me the proverbial boot I needed. I am, of course writing about using cardamom in cooking.
I mean, the title of this blog is "Confessions of a Cardamom Addict"...so it only makes sense that I'd be writing about it in one way or another. My big problem is I get distracted and food is such a nice distraction.
Anyway, I'm going to try and be a good girl and start posting cardamom recipes...I'll even go out on a limb and commit to pixels one recipe or one article a month (I say this now, but let's see if I can keep it up). I'm planning to restart my primers, and I hope to have one on cardamom in the spring when I'lll be between classes and might be able to take some time off work.
Anyway, as Heather pointed out, McCormicks listed masala chai spices as a 2006 flavour trend...and of course, cardamom is one of those spices.
Every Indian home has a different variation of masala tea--Mum's is different than mine, my various Aunties have different blends as well. To tell you the truth, my blend keeps changing depending upon my mood. If you've never made masala tea before, try this one (my current variant) and then change it to suit your palate.
Get a good black tea that you like to drink on its own (with milk and sugar): if you don't have any looseleaf on hand, use one sachet per person. If you are making this for more than two people, use one rounded teaspoon's worth of tea per person and adjust the spices accordingly.
This recipe is made with two per cent milk. If you favour skim or one per cent, you may want to decrease the amount of water used and use more milk; conversely if you use homo (full-fat) milk you might want to use less milk and more water. If you only have pre-ground spices, you can use those, but be aware that they may not have the potency or pungency of whole spice.
2 whole cardamom pods
5cm cinnamon stick
3 whole cloves
1 star anise
1 thinnish slice fresh ginger
2 whole black peppercorns
2 rounded tsp black tea
Lightly crush together the cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, star anise and peppercorns.
Tip the contents into a small saucepan and add the remaining ingredients (milk, water, ginger and black tea). Bring to a boil and allow to steep to desired strength.
Strain through a very fine mesh seive into a pot or directly in to cups/mugs. Sweeten to taste with honey, sugar or vanilla sugar.
This amount is enough for my favourite mug (about it holds the equivalent of a large Timmy's (medium coffee in the US)), but will do for two dainty cups.
Spices pictured above: clockwise, starting at the top: fresh gingerroot, black peppercorns, whole cloves, cinnamon sticks and star anise; centre: whole cardamom pods.
tags: Cardamom Cinnamon Clove Ginger Indian food Peppercorn Star anise