I first discovered the Yemeni cuisine when I was visiting the USA. Yes, the USA of all places! I was in New York and researching good halal restaurants to grab a bite and I came across Yemen Cafe in Brooklyn. Online reviews of this Yemeni restaurant were promising and it definitely lived up to my expectations! The food was absolutely yummy, but what I loved about this place the most was it`s tea... Yemeni chai is by far the best tea I have ever tasted. Forget Moroccan mint tea (No offense, I do like Moroccan food!), this is something far better.
The best part? Yemen Cafe actually offers their tea for FREE. So you can grab as many cups as you like!
When I got back from the States I decided I HAD to find out how to make this tea. I`ve made it several times before and tried different recipes (Queen of Sheeba, Ya Salam Cooking), but yesterday I did it... I made the perfect cup of Yemeni tea! (Okay, I am not Yemeni, but I still think I made a very good cup any Yemeni would love to drink. ;-) )
I based my recipe for the most part on the ones in the links I provided above, but I added a few changes.
So here`s how to make the (nearly) perfect cup of Yemeni chai:
Ingredients for 1 big cup or 2 smaller cups:
* 1 and 1/2 cup of water
* 1/2 of evaporated milk (Don`t use regular milk if you want the perfect cup, use evaporated one!)
* 2 teaspoons of black tea
* 3 cloves
* 6 cardamom pods
* 1 tsp of ground ginger
* 1/2 tsp of cinnamon
* Sugar or sweetener to taste (I used 4 tsp of stevia)
- Pour the water in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
- Add the tea, cloves, cardamom pods, ginger and cinnamon together in a tea egg.
- When the water is boiling add the tea egg.
- Reduce the heat to medium and let it simmer for about 10 minutes.
- Remove the tea egg, add sugar or sweetener and milk.
- Pour in 1 big or 2 small cups and voila!