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Tag Archives: chai tea

Chewy chai cookies

There’s something wonderfully comforting about oatmeal cookies, especially ones with soft chewy centres. We regularly make variations of our chewy oaty biscuits, which Nicholas likes to both make and eat, but I wanted to try making some with the warm and lightly spiced flavour of my beloved vanilla chai tea.

While these are not the healthiest snack, I’ve reduced the sugar content quite a bit (by a third!) so you can feel less guilty eating them. If you prefer sweeter cookies you can also add a handful of raisins or sultanas to the cookie dough.

Oatmeal oaty biscuits

If you can’t get hold of vanilla chai teabags, look at my tip below the recipe for recreating the flavours with spices you probably already have in your cupboard.

I make these quite small (they’re about 5cm in diameter after cooking), so you can indulge with less guilt. The recipe is easily doubled though if you prefer to make bigger ones.

CHEWY CHAI COOKIES

Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 10-12 mins
Makes 12 small cookies

60g butter, chopped
1 tbsp honey or agave nectar
75g (1/2 cup) rolled oats
50g (1/2 cup) plain flour
50g (1/4 cup) soft brown sugar
2 vanilla chai tea bags (leaves only)

Preheat your oven to 160C and line an oven tray with baking paper.

Gently melt the butter and honey (or agave nectar) either in the microwave or in a small saucepan. Leave to cool.

Mix the oats, flour, sugar and tea leaves together in a medium-sized bowl.

Pour in the cooled melted butter and honey, and mix until combined.

Roll the mixture into small balls and place well apart on the prepared tray. Press down with the back of an oiled spoon to flatten them slightly.

Bake for 10-12 minutes until just starting to turn brown, flattening them again with the back of an oiled spoon after about 5 mins of cooking. (If you prefer crunchy cookies, cook them for a few minutes longer until turned golden brown.)

Leave the cookies to cool on the tray for 5 mins to firm up before transferring them to a wire rack to completely cool.

Variations:

  • Use a dairy-free margarine instead of the butter to make dairy-free cookies;
  • Add a handful of dried fruit such as raisins, chopped dried apricot, dried apple or dried strawberries;
  • Add chocolate chips to the mixture or drizzle the baked cookies with melted chocolate;
  • Add flaked almonds.

Tip: instead of using the vanilla chai tea leaves, make your own chai spice mix by combining 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ground ginger, 1/4 tsp ground allspice, a pinch of ground cloves and a pinch of freshly ground pepper. Also add 1/2 tsp vanilla essence to your cookie dough.

AlphaBakes Logo

I’m linking this recipe to the AlphaBakes monthly challenge (this month it’s the letter β€˜C’) jointly hosted by Caroline from Caroline Makes and Ros from The More than Occasional Baker (and I’m quietly very proud of achieving a triple letter ‘C’ this time ;))

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Review: Tea India

What do you do when you’ve managed to get your little one down for a daytime nap? Put your hand up if, like me, you manage to make yourself a cuppa and maybe grab a biscuit before slumping into the sofa for some quiet ‘me’ time. That’s a lot of hands! I’m glad to know I’m not the only one.

I always have coffee for breakfast and after dinner, but during the day, tea has a certain comforting warmth I really enjoy. I’m quite conservative in my tea-drinking habits and go through periods where I just drink one type (maybe Earl Grey, maybe English Breakfast or just good old builder’s brew). I do have a thing for vanilla tea though, which isn’t that easy to get in the UK. On our last trip to Belgian I stocked up on Twinings Vanilla and unless my mother-in-law visits, my supply should last quite a while! But although I love drinking it, its artificial vanilla smell can sometimes be too much.


I was delighted to receive some tea to sample from Tea India, who’ve recently released their award-winning range in the UK, and even more so when one of them was their Vanilla Chai (there’s also a Masala Chai and a Cardamom Chai in the range). The Vanilla Chai has the usual suspects of spices for a chai tea (cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and pepper) in addition to natural vanilla flavouring. The tea bag before brewing has a predominantly peppery smell which made me a bit dubious, but after brewing that mellowed out. But enough about the smell, what does it taste like? For me, the spices blend very well, creating a balanced and smooth tea with just a hint of sweet vanilla. I’ve enjoyed the Vanilla Chai both with and without milk, and have had at least one mug of it (alright, usually two mugs) every day since getting it. I think my period of Vanilla Chai has started!

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve also tried Tea India’s premium Black Tea. This is a good quality tasting tea that would be perfect at any time of day. Its rounded and full flavour makes me believe that they do actually source the finest tea from North East India, picking only the top two leaves and the bud, but my tastebuds struggled to pick up the Assam’s malty taste. In any case, I will happily keep drinking this and not just because I got it for free.

I really like Tea India’s packaging; these are boxes you’d like people to see rather than hiding them away in the cupboard. And there’s a great splash of colour when you open the box, the related colour for each tea. I also like the round tea bags. Ok, the taste is more important than the shape of the tea bag, but it justs adds a little extra something for me, the tea’s been given a bit more love, than the bog standard square bag.

The Tea India range is available now in selected UK Tesco and Booths stores. Visit their website to find your nearest stockist and put your feet up for a very well-earned break. I’m off to tweet my local Tesco to ask them to stock Vanilla Chai πŸ™‚

Disclosure: I was sent two boxes of tea to sample. My opinions are honest and my own.