RECIPE: Chai with My Cousin

chai tea

I have been hiding out a bit. Not tweeting with my tweeps. No Facebook with my Frookers. Sometimes life happens and you just have to take a deep breath and go underground for while.

So, I’ve been home,  watching Finding Nemo with my son and spending time with my family.

I’ve also started drinking chai with my cousin Rita every night.

Well, sort of.

The last time I saw her I was a little girl and we were in Bombay  on a family vacation staying at my Aunt Raj’s house and we had half a dozen cousins to play with and show us India through the eyes of children our own age. Needless to say, we did a lot of jumping on beds and drinking ice cold Coca Cola during  humid rain storms.

I have’t seen Rita or any of my  cousins in 30 years.  But we’ve reconnected thanks to the Internet and I couldn’t be more excited to have found a piece of my childhood.

She and I talk about cooking a lot and recently she sent me a wonderful chai recipe that she makes for herself and so I’ve taken to making it at night to help wind me down for bed. It’s a cozy recipe, something about the aromatic scent of cardamom, sweet creamy milk and sugar that comforts.

Sometimes, that’s just what you need … a little tea with a cousin to help get you through life’s many bumpy roads.

Chai Tea

1/2cup each of water

1/2 cup of milk ( I use half and half because I like it extra creamy)

2 teaspoon of sugar

1 teaspoon of tea powder (Taj Mahal or Brook Bond Red Label) *** You can also use English Breakfast or Darjeeling

Freshly crushed cardamom

Freshly crushed ginger

Dash of cinnamon


Boil, reduce to medium heat while stirring occasionally. Strain and serve.



JUST READ: FINDING LUCAS by Samantha Stroh Bailey

Finding_LucasEditors Note: I don’t do book reviews but I do like to chat with authors whose books I’ve just read and ask them what they are eating, writing and loving. So I’m happy to introduce Samantha Stroh Bailey who wrote the fun, sassy and lively FINDING LUCAS. It was such fast ride from the very first page! 

Thanks for taking the time Samantha!


I live in Toronto, and we don’t lack for incredible restaurants. But there is one very special place that I always return to and it’s called Southern Accent, in the heart of The Annex, one of Toronto’s coolest,  and most eclectic neighborhoods. The food is Cajun Creole Soul and the best drink I’ve ever had in my life is a jalapeno-infused Caesar that will burn your mouth and tickle your tongue until your taste buds explode with pleasure. Hush puppies, crab cakes and the most mouth-watering lamb are just a few of the delicious foods on their funky menu. The moment you step inside you’re transported to New Orleans. Mardi Gras masks and beads line the walls, and the dim lighting and background Zydeco music will have you whipping off your top in no time.

WRITE (Reading ..)

I just finished Sophie’s Turn by the fabulous Nicky Wells. As an author, I am so lucky to meet and get to know incredible writers, and I fell in love with Nicky’s funny, fast paced, addictive voice. She’s a soul sister, for sure. I can’t wait to read Sophie’s Run, out now, and Sophie’s Encore, being released in September. I’m writing my second novel, Everything But, contemporary women’s fiction, about a woman who risks her marriage and closest friendship to have the baby she never thought she wanted. It is a story that I hope will resonate with anyone who has ever struggled to have a child.


I’ve been writing for thirty years and in 2011, I opened my freelance writing/editing company, Perfect Pen Communications . I finally got to live my dreams of writing/editing fulltime, becoming a journalist and in 2012, I published Finding Lucas. I couldn’t believe that what I have wanted my entire life was happening. I never expected my debut novel to be read by people all over the world, and I certainly never thought I’d be getting tweets and emails from strangers telling me they loved my book. It is mind-boggling and the best feeling ever. I also never knew how warm, kind and supportive the author and blogger community is and I’m so grateful. I have always been scared of social media, but once I published Finding Lucas, I had to put myself out there in a big way and the rewards have been tremendous. So, what I’m loving right now is my life and the rare opportunity to live my every dream.

Thanks so much, Cindy, for inviting me to your blog. I’m so excited to read HEARTBREAK CAKE!


samheadshotauthorcentral Connect with Samantha!
 Twitter: @perfectpen
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