Literally “tea spice” this blend will easily bump any boring old drink or sweet dish up a few notches with very little work. Whether you choose to use it for masala cider, masala chai, or to spike some cream cheese frosting for a carrot cake, it’s a good choice for adding some spice and zip to sweet dishes and take it all to a whole new level. Like any other spice blend, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all ultimate recipe, the masala changes from household to household, person to person, some contain rose, some black cardamom, some are used for green tea and some for black. Mine takes a basic classic approach of warming spices, and tosses in a little bit of lapsang souchong tea (a smoked black tea) to flush things out and add some extra depth, really pulling everything together and adding just a touch of richness.
17g | 2 Tbsp + 2 tsp ceylon cinnamon powder
6.8g | 2 ⅓ tsp black peppercorns, whole
2.3g | 1 ⅓ tsp fennel seed
13.5g | 2 Tbsp ginger powder
10.3g | 1 Tbsp + 2 tsp green cardamom pods
4.2g | 1 ½ tsp mace powder
3g | 1 ½ tsp allspice berries
3g | 1 ¼ tsp whole cloves
2g | 1 tsp lapsang souchong tea
Lightly toast peppercorns, allspice, and cloves until very fragrant and sort of sweet smelling
Toast fennel seed until toasted and caramel scented, and slightly browned
Toast cardamom until pods are duller and slightly tan
Allow toasted spices to cool, then grind them along with tea until powdered
Add in powders and combine well Store in an airtight container in a dark, cool place for up to 3 months
Use ¾ tsp per cup of liquid
Again, my approach is pretty classic, cinnamon makes up the base, with it’s warming, spicy, woodsy notes, ginger for earthiness and zing, green cardamom for wonderful citrusy notes and a delightful perfume, and black pepper for warmth, bite, and woodsiness. We have clove and allspice to bring in some of the heavier, sweeter spiced notes, fennel seed to further enhance the sweetness and bring in a touch of caramel, the lapsang souchong for a tad bit of smokiness and richness which helps to mellow everything out just a tad, and finally we have mace, which i’ve chosen over the more common nutmeg because it’s more floral and works so beautifully in this blend.
The non-powdered spices here all get lightly toasted, helping to further mellow the flavours and bring out some deeper richness from them, but not long enough that we lose the aromatic top notes. You want to make sure your spices have cooled completely before blending, this will help to prevent losing too much of your flavour and heating up the tea and powdered spices.
Grind up the whole toasted spices, then the tea, then mix in your powdered spices and you’re all set! I recommend starting with 3/4 of a tsp per 6oz of liquid and adding more if you prefer a stronger flavour, because your spices are powdered here, you only need to steep about 5-10 minutes to pull out all the flavours, which is pretty awesome considering whole chai masala takes forever! If you don’t like sediment in the bottom of your cup, just run everything through a fine-mesh strainer or loose woven coffee filter (or tea bag) before consuming. Then enjoy! I HIGHLY recommend using lapsang souchong syrup to sweeten your beverages, it goes soooo well with this. Don’t forget too, this is delicious in cookies, frostings, ice creams….just about anything sweet really takes a shine to having this added, so go forth and sprinkle it on!