Step by step recipe of Kashmiri tea with photos.
Like many I also came across this tea for the first time in one of the weddings. Getting a good Kashmiri tea in Karachi could be difficult and I had to go really far to get it. So making my own as per my taste was a quest. In order to develop a deep pink color naturally, I did three attempts. The pink or gulabi color that developed in third attempt was worth it. I have tried to give detailed pictorial step by step so you can make it in the first try.
Many people complain Kashmiri tea is just like ‘badaam pista doodh’ or ‘hareera’. That is because many restaurant serve a very milky Kashmiri tea. The Kashmiri tea with less milk has more intense Kashmiri tea flavor and warmth. So I like my home-made Kashmiri tea more than what it served on ‘dhabba’ or cafe.
My other chai recipes are
Kashmir and Kashmiri tea
Kashmir is heaven on earth and their culture, jewelry and food all are fascinating. Even Kashmiri people are very hospitable and beautiful.
In authentic Kashmiri tea salt is added and it is called noon chai. But some non Kashmiri people in my city (Karachi) add both salt and sugar so it’s up to you. In Kashmir, where temperature drops below zero degree they add cream and butter along with powdered dry fruits in the tea. This makes this tea ideal for winters as it is filling and body warming. In my city temperature hardly goes below 10 degree so we enjoy it without fats (like cream and butter) and with little dry fruits. So you adjust that too as per weather in your city.
The pink color in Kashmiri tea is reaction of chorophyll present in tea with baking soda. So basically you have to cook the tea enough to get all the chlorophyll released in water. You also need enough baking soda in tea for reaction. A pinch is enough. Do NOT add more than that as too much baking soda can spoil the taste. This process might take place in 30 minutes and sometime may need 45 minutes. If all water has evaporated and still you don’t get reddish color then add more water and cook more . Once the reaction has completed and we have deep red color. We have to add ice-cold water. This shocks the tea and we get deeper red color. I’m trying to explain this so you can handle if something goes wrong. Like normal chai you can adjust milk, sugar and spices to your taste. I added only two spices but you can add more or none at all.
How to make Kashmiri Tea
A hearty and delicious tea that is meant to sipped slowly in winter nights.
- 2 cups water
- 3 tablespoon kashmiri tea leaves
- 9 green cardamom crushed ( choti elaichi)
- 3 inch cinnamon ,broken into chip (dal cheeni)
- ¼ to ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅛- 1⁄4 teaspoon baking soda (khane ka soda)
- 1 cup cold water (pani)
- 3 to 4 tablespoon sugar (cheeni),( optional, since sugar is not added in Kashmiri tea but some non kashmiri people like it sweet.)
- 2 cup milk for strong or 3 cup milk for light (dhood)
- ½ cup cream optional
- 1 tablespoon grounded pistachios (pista), optional
- 1 tablespoon grounded almonds (badaam), optional
- * For authentic taste and aroma use Kashmiri tea. If not available use pure green tea leaves can also be used.
- 4 jasmine flowers (chambeli)
- 1 star anise (badyaan phool)
- 4 cloves
In a wide based skillet, take water, Kashmiri tea leaves, salt and cardamom, cinnamon.
Bring it boil and let it boil for a minute. Now add baking soda.
Cook more till you get deep red color and water is reduced to half. (20-30 minutes)
Add ice cold water in boiling hot tea. Mix well for 1 minutes.
Kehwa is ready. You can strain, cool and store in fridge for 3-4 days.
When making tea add milk, sugar (if using) and powdered dry fruits to kehwa.
Cook for another 2-3 minutes and serve. Garnish with more nuts.
Update :For best results use Kashmiri tea, if you don't have Kashmiri tea, you can use green tea instead, but in my personal experience green tea does give a very similar taste to kashmiri tea but fails to give pink color. Although, you can add pink food color. But that is a fix and not authentic way.
Step by step Kashmiri tea or pink tea or gulabi tea or noon chai
Take water and add Kashmiri tea leaves.
cinnamon and bring it to boil.
Add 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda.
Let it boil on medium flame.
The color changes. Continue boiling.
You can see a slight pink color at this stage but keeping cooking,
The water is reduced to half. And the color is deep red.
Add icy cold water. And mix well for 1 minute.
Kehwa of Kashmiri tea is ready. You can strain and after cooling you store in fridge at this stage.
When you wish to make the tea add milk about 1/2 cup or more for each serving,
A beautiful pink color is visible. Add sugar 1 teaspoon for each serving.( Add only if you like it sweet, authentic Kashmiri tea is saltish and not sweet.)