Ancient manuscripts tell us that in the VIII century BC, the tea leaf was known in the ancient land of Hindustan. However, the widespread popularization of tea and the history of the associated customs began only during the colonization, when the British began to grow this culture on the fertile Indian lands.
The traditions of using the aromatic drink are largely borrowed from English etiquette, as the Indian nobility sought to imitate the lifestyle of European immigrants. Therefore, the presentation of tea in Indian style is not complete without the usual beautiful sets — light and without a bright pattern.
Authentic dishes can be found only in the poor houses of India, where tea is served in rough clay cups — kullarhi, which are immediately thrown away after use. This is dictated not only by the rules of hygiene, which is not all right in India, but also by caste prejudices.
To the readers of our blog, we will tell you about the most interesting and ancient way of how to brew Indian tea.
The most distinctive Indian tea ceremony is the preparation of the traditional masala drink. For this process, you will need two teapots in the shape of a jug with a wide neck, a small burner and a long spoon for stirring.
First, water is poured into one teapot, spices are immediately put into it and stirred. At the time of boiling, the water is removed from the fire and the dishes with milk are placed on the burner, in which sugar is necessarily added before heating. After the milk boils, an interesting process of mixing the two parts of the drink begins.
The master of the ceremony must be able to deftly, without spilling a single drop or leaving a sediment on the bottom, pour drinks from one dish to another. This procedure is repeated exactly five times, then the mixture is simmered over low heat for a few minutes, after which the masala is poured into cups through a small fine strainer and served to guests along with sweets.
Tea drinking in India has many features due to the diversity of customs of ethnic groups. In addition to the rich and nutritious masala, you can try more familiar options for the European taste, for example, strong “frozen tea”, which after brewing and cooling is added lemon and a lot of ice.
There are several rules that you should consider when making Indian tea:
- as spices for masala, mix: pepper of different types, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, star anise and cloves;
- if you decide to add figs to the masala, then put it after the milk boils, otherwise it will curdle;
- use black or red varieties, green ones are not popular with Indians;
- all types of tea according to Indian customs are brewed over an open fire.