French Press Chai Latte

This weekend in New York was so cold that it seemed unbearable to do anything other than cozy up with a book, some warm beverages, and spend time in the kitchen.

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I’m lucky to live in Kensington, Brooklyn — a neighborhood with a lot of great grocery shopping. There are a ton of Indian speciality stores just a few blocks away from my apartment, and one of my favorite things to buy there is loose-leaf tea for making chai.

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Fair warning, the kind of loose-leaf Assam tea you find at these stores is strong. When I make this recipe using tea bags, I normally use anywhere from 4-6 for a batch of chai that serves two. I recommend erring on the side of caution if you can find the authentic stuff in your area (you can also buy it online here), because this stuff makes you feel buzzy!

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Normally, I made chai lattes on the stovetop, whisking and simmering everything together in a copper-bottomed pot before straining. You can use that method too, but making it in a french press is a little less effort and has a delightful creamy, foamy texture that makes it worth a try.

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French Press Turmeric Chai Latte 

Ingredients 

  • 1-2 tbsp loose-leaf Assam tea
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 cardamom pod, smashed
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c milk (substitute any plant milk if dairy isn’t your thing!)

Method 

  1. Add tea, spices, and milk to the french press, then fill with boiling water.
  2. Stir everything together with a chopstick or wooden spoon, then return the lid to the french press and steep for 4-6 minutes, depending on how strong you want it.
  3. Plunge and pour! If you want a foamier latte texture, pump the filter very quickly a few times before plunging all the way down.

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