Brew it hot for your chilly evenings

Brew it hot for your chilly evenings

Winter is steadily advancing towards us and the chilly evenings are a reminder of this. The weather now mandates a hot cup of tea or coffee during dusk but if you are bored of these staples by now, here are some other hot brews you can experiment with.

Kahwa 

This Kashmiri green tea is made traditionally by boiling tea leaves along with saffron, cardamom pods, cloves, cinnamon sticks and some locally available dried fruits. It’s refreshing, soothing and has a bunch of health benefits.

Tea- but not your regular one

Honey ginger tea, herbal caffeine-free tea, mushroom tea, lemongrass and mint tea, tulsi tea, lemon tea, jaggery tea, black tea, white tea, fermented tea— the list is endless. 

Noon chai

Vastly removed from what we are used to, this is a traditional beverage from Kashmir and is made with sea salt, milk, nuts and baking soda. The hint of salt is balanced by cardamom, almonds, pistachios and cinnamon; giving it a nutty taste and a velvety texture. It is also called pink tea.

Kadha

Touted by many as the predecessor to ‘masala chai’, it is a drink made with a number of herbs and spices that are steeped in water. There are a number of Kadha recipes.

Kesar milk

Warm milk infused with the rich essence of saffron and cardamom, topped with blanched and shredded almonds and pistachios, is a loaded treat for winters.

Kanji

It is made from a vegetable called Kala Gajar and is consumed at room temperature.  The beverage is cooked before consumption and is left for a while to mature.

Soup

Break the monotonous pairing of tea/coffee with winters — a warm bowl of soup does as much for your soul as it does for your health. Choose from vegetable, tomato, manchow, hot and sour, corn, chicken, mutton, onion and so on. Or opt for a DIY version cobbled together from the leftover veggies in your kitchen. 

Alcoholic beverages

Not to promote alcoholism in any way but sometimes a tipple does warm the cockles of the heart. From the good ol’ Old Monk and mulled wine to our homegrown Fenny/Mahua/Toddy, options are many.

Hot chocolate

No matter what your age, an indulgent cup of hot chocolate is a heady combination of chocolate, cocoa, milk, comfort and nostalgia. 

(Compiled by Rajitha Menon)

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