Whole Chai Latte

Chai tea made giving up coffee bearable.

I love(d) coffee. I no longer drink it, but I find the smell to be so intoxicating as it hints at nostalgic flavours. I gave it up a couple years ago not long after I learned that the standard amount of caffeine found in coffee can be taxing on your adrenals and endocrine system, putting your body in hormonal stress. Then going off coffee for a cleanse illustrated the addictive properties it held – I experienced crazy, unnatural headaches due to withdrawals. When I went back to drinking it, I was more aware of the jitters or shaky/crazed energy I had (in some instances the caffeine was so strong, I experienced stomach pains), and the inevitable crashes I’d get (even with decaf!) made the whole thing seem pointless. It wasn’t an easy transition though. I tried multiple tea flavours before discovering chai’s spicy gingery-kick that woke up my senses and gave my taste buds a flavourful rush that could compete with the boldness of coffee.

After going through a couple more cleanses I discovered I don’t actually need caffeine in any form. I’ll treat myself to it once in a while, but if I sleep well, I find I now have the energy I need to get me through the work day.

But I still love that gingery-kick. So here is my newest rendition of the Chai in my life – blending whole ingredients to get the most out of them. Most days it’s caffeine-free and exactly like the recipe below, but I sometimes add the tea in for those groggier mornings, which I’ll explain below.

 

WHOLE CHAI LATTE RECIPE

(1 serving)

  • 1 tsp Chia seeds
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon/Pumpkin spice powder
  • 1 tsp Raw cacao nibs
  • 4-6 Pitted dates (depending on how sweet you like it)
  • 1 tsp Goji berries
  • 1/4 inch Ginger root
  • 1/2 cup Heated Almond mylk
  • boiled water

OPTIONAL ADDITIONS:

  • ice
  • seeds from 1 Cardamom pod
  • pinch of Vanilla beans from the pod
  • 1/4 tsp Maca powder
  • dash of Stevia (if you like it particularly sweet)
  • 1/4 cup of steeped black tea
  • dash of cayenne pepper
  • dash of turmeric powder
  • Other food or herb powders (Chaga/Reishi mushroom, nutmeg, etc.)
  • 2 tbsp Pumpkin puree (for a pumpkin spice chai)

Directions:

  1. If using black tea, steep in 1/4 cup of boiled water.
  2. Heat up almond mylk and pour in blender, along with Chia seeds.
  3. If using tea, after the tea has steeped, remove the tea bag, and put all desired ingredients in your blender.
  4. Blend until smooth, pour into cup and top up with more boiled water, and enjoy!
  5. To make this a cold or iced latte/smoothie, simply don't heat up the almond milk and replace boiled water with ice.
  6. Optional step: because we're blending whole ingredients, the drink can be a little thick. So feel free to use a strainer to remove any bits and ginger strings while pouring into your cup.
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A few fun nutritional facts:

DATES – High in fiber!

GOJI BERRIES – Great source of antioxidants and beta-carotene!

RAW CACAO – Even more antioxidant power and high in magnesium!

CHIA SEEDS – High in fiber, contains Omega-3 fatty acids, and helps boost collagen and elastin

CINNAMON – Antibacterial (boosts immune system), and regulates blood sugar, helping to control hunger!

GINGER – Relief from gastrointestinal issues, nausea, and boosts your immune system!

CARDAMOM – Natural detoxifier, it’s antibacterial properties help kill bad breath and cold symptoms!

MACA – Helps balance hormones and boosts energy!

VANILLA – Antioxidant and cognitive enhancing agent… mostly it just tastes yummy!

CAYENNE – stimulating (for digestion and circulation) and detoxifying

REISHI MUSHROOM – helps to regulate the immune system and has anti-cancer properties

CHAGA MUSHROOM – incredible amounts of antioxidants and has anti-cancer properties

NUTMEG – stimulates the brain and promotes restful sleep

Teenna TsangComment