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Cha and Chaffogato!

Tea has many names and many serving styles around the world. This version of classic cha with an herbal twist is a perfect morning drink, a snoozy afternoon pick-me-up, or a refreshing dessert served with ice cream!

Sharing a cup of cha is often a sign of hospitality. While traveling in Kathiyavad, a region in Western Gujarat home to the Asiatic lion sanctuary Gir, we were often warmly welcomed, regardless of the hour, by locals with cups of steaming cha.

Makes 4 servings


  • 16 oz water

  • 16 oz fat-free milk

  • 1/2 stalk of lemongrass

  • 15 mint leaves

  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder or 1 whole cardamom crushed with shell

  • 1 tsp ginger

  • 4 tsp black Assam tea (we love Wagh Bakri)

  • (optional) 1 tsp sugar


  1. In a 2.5 quart or larger pot, put 2 cups of water to boil. Chop the lemongrass and add to boiling water. Cover and simmer for 2 minutes.

  2. Chop the mint. Add ginger, cardamom, mint, tea, and optionally sugar. Bring to boil.

  3. Add 2 cups of milk. Bring to boil. Turn off the heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Strain and enjoy!

Serving Suggestions

  • Serve hot in a cup and saucer

  • Pour over ice cream on a hot day for a chaffogato!

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