My family and I stopped at the Marion Square farmer’s market on a whim in Charleston last week. Of course, I made a bee-line for the tea table that Charleston Low Country Tea had set up. There were a few unflavored black teas that I wish I hadn’t neglected, but this tea intrigued me the most.
I’m a pretty migraine-prone person. Have been since I was a kid. So that lured me into picking it up and giving it a sniff. It’s a traditional chai (black tea, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon) except for one difference — mango. There are bits of dried mango in it, but also something they just call “mango flavor”, and whatever it is, it’s potent.
I want to mention that the 3 oz. bag I purchased came with a reusable cloth bag to steep it in. I thought that was very nice, and I probably will use it, but only for this tea. You know how chai spices are. Permanent. Anyway, I began preparing it the way I usually do; strong with half milk, half water. But at the end of the five minutes, it wasn’t looking quite dark enough for that, so I just added a splash of milk instead and some sugar.
The result is delicious! I know mango is sort of a weird fruit to go with the spices, but I really like it. It’s not a very spicy chai, much more on the bright, fruity side. Reminds me almost of mango nectar, it’s so powerful. But the milk + chai spice gives the tea depth and makes it into something that’s both bracing and comforting. This is going to be a great first-thing-in-the-morning tea.