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Kashmiri Chai (Pink Tea) Recipe

20-Minute Kashmiri Chai (Pink Tea)

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This easy, one-pot Kashmiri Chai recipe takes less than 20 minutes to make! This is not a traditional Noon Chai recipe, but an accessible version that's still delicious (and pink)! Make it with regular green tea leaves if you can't find Kashmiri tea leaves.
Course Drinks
Cuisine Indian, Pakistani
Diet Gluten Free, Halal, Vegetarian
Keyword Kashmiri Chai, Noon Chai, Pink Tea
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Servings 2 mugs (2.5 cups)
Calories 187

Equipment

  • Medium Saucepan

Ingredients

For Ice Water

  • 1 cup room temperature water
  • 2-3 large ice cubes

For Kashmiri Chai

  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tbsp Kashmiri chai leaves or sub any non-bitter green tea leaves
  • 2 star anise (badiyan)
  • 6-8 green cardamom pods
  • 2 whole cloves (loung) optional
  • 1 " cinnamon stick optional
  • 1/8 tsp heaped baking soda
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • ½ cup half and half* or sub 1 part heavy whipping cream + 1 part milk
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt or sea salt or to taste
  • 2-2.5 tbsp sweetener of choice I've tried cane sugar, brown sugar, and date syrup

For Serving (Optional)

  • ½-1 tbsp raw almonds crushed using mortar and pestle
  • ½ tbsp unsalted pistachios crushed using mortar and pestle

Instructions

  • Prepare ice water: Combine room temperature water with 2-3 large ice cubes and set aside.
  • Heat a medium saucepan over high heat. Add water, Kashmiri chai leaves, star anise, green cardamom pods, cloves and cinnamon (if using) and bring to a boil.
  • Once it comes to a boil, add the baking soda. It’ll fizz a little. Allow this mixture to boil over high heat for 5-6 minutes. Occasionally, use a ladle to aerate (scoop and pour back) the tea. You’ll notice the froth in the water go from pale green to a deep pink color. If not, add another 1/8 tsp of baking soda.** The water will be greatly reduced, almost evaporated.
  • Add the prepared ice water (discard any ice cubes). If you’d like, you can aerate several times to deepen the color. Add the milk, half & half, salt, and sweetener. Allow it to a come to a light boil, then immediately turn off the heat. Do not allow it to boil for too long as it'll start to lose some of its pink color. Taste and adjust salt and sweetener.
  • Strain the tea into cups and add crushed almonds and pistachios, as desired.

Video

Notes

*If you prefer it lighter, replace the half & half with milk. Likewise, if you prefer it richer, increase the half & half and decrease the milk.
**If, after adding more baking soda, it's still not turning pink, then try using different green tea leaves. 

Nutrition

Serving: 2.5g | Calories: 187kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 35mg | Sodium: 387mg | Potassium: 324mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 412IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 231mg | Iron: 1mg