I can't count how many times I've sat down the past few weeks trying to write this first post-bubba blog post. Every time I do something seems to come up - Mila needs to be fed, changed, burped, washed or cuddled; clothes, sheets and blankets need to be washed; food needs to be bought, made and kitchen hurricane cleaned up after; or lectures attended (I'm back studying Naturopathy and Nutrition, just part time this year). I'm sure those of you who are mamas and papas will know all too well what I'm talking about, but I honestly didn't realise how all encompassing having a new bub would be. Of course I can't complain, Mila is just wonderful. I know I'm biased, but I truly think she is the cutest little munchkin I've ever seen!
While blog writing has taken me a bit longer to get back into, my kitchen mojo seems to have returned a lot earlier. Most of the recipes I'm making at the moment are one-pot wonders, quick and easy to whip up after a hard day's work. I'm pretty excited to share a bunch of my favourites with you over the next few weeks. This delicious Spiced Chai Milk is definitely one of my top picks, and ticks all the way-too-busy-and-tired-to-cook boxes. It's easy to make, quick and tastes amazing, so I know you'll love it as much as I do!
Ever since I stopped drinking coffee (not a goer for someone recovering from Graves' autoimmune disease, and can also inhibit ovulation and fertility for some), chai lattes have been my go-to beverage of choice when I'm out - the spicier the better. This homemade reincarnation is even more delicious than the store bought variety. You can drink it hot like a latte, but as it's still summer here in NZ I've been enjoying it icy cold. It tastes even better if you slurp it out of a cute reused bottle with a glass straw (we've just got some gorgeous ones in store here which I'm absolutely loving).
Say cheers to Chai
"Chai" in Hindi simply means "tea". You may have heard it referred to by its full name, Masala Chai, meaning "spiced tea". This much loved Indian beverage is traditionally made with black tea leaves and a combination of cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, cloves, black pepper and star anise. The spices are brewed with water, milk and sugar, and served hot. Masala chai's unique aromatic spice blend has been used for centuries in Indian cultures to cure colds, coughs and fever, and support optimal digestive function. In this day and age it's also a great coffee substitute, with a much lower caffeine content, and added health benefits from the earthy warming Ayurvedic spices.
My Spiced Chai Milk recipe takes inspiration from these traditional Indian roots, whilst focussing on three of my favourite spices - cinnamon, cardamom and ginger. All have warming and calming properties, and are also high in antioxidants. I've used dates to sweeten instead of regular white sugar, and have added vanilla for an extra layer of flavour and sweetness. Once you've tried this base recipe you can have fun playing around with some of the other classic Chai spices, adding in a dash of clove powder, star anise powder or black pepper to your milk. You can even double the spices as your taste bugs desire.
As long as you've got a blender this should take you no more than 5 minutes to make and another 5 minutes to clean up. Feel free to double the recipe and pour the whole thing into a large glass bottle to enjoy over the week - it should last up to four days in the fridge. I can easily consume the whole batch myself within a few days, so if it becomes a favourite of yours too it's definitely worth making double! Also feel free to add an extra medjoul date or two to your blend if you prefer it slightly sweeter, and if you don't have medjoul dates you can use regular dates, just double the numbers.
I would love to see your gorgeously blended Spiced Chai Milks on Instagram, so feel free to share your shots tagging @begoodorganics and #begoodorganics. As always, I'll be sharing the best of your pics on my Instagram and Facebook.
And for those of you interested in little Milly's birth stats, here you go:
Til next week... take care and be well.
PS If you like this recipe, I'd love you to share it on Pinterest (hover over any of the images and click Pin It), Instagram (regram or make your own), Facebook or Twitter (hit the buttons up top). Thank you!
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Always use certified organic, local and fairly traded ingredients wherever possible
1c cashews (soaked 3 hours, rinsed and drained)
3 medjoul dates, pitted
1/2tsp vanilla bean powder or 1tsp vanilla extract
1/2tsp ginger (fresh or dry)
1/2tsp cloves (optional)
1/4tsp black pepper (optional)
pinch sea salt
c = 250ml cup, tbsp = 15ml tablespoon, tsp = 5ml teaspoon
Herbs and Natural Supplements - An Evidence-Based Guide (Braun, L., & Cohen, M.)
The Food Pharmacy (Carper, J.)
Healing With Wholefoods (Pitchford, P.)
Whole: Rethinking the Science of Nutrition (Campbell, T.C.)
The China Study (Campbell, T.C.)
Crunchy, caramelised, cinnamon doused, and lightly salted, these delicious 5-ingredient bites are the yummiest snack and sprinkle out. Low in sugar, 5 minutes to prep, they’ll transform your meals from average to amazing!