Tulsi Karha | Tulsi Tea with Spices

Winter comes, and the rains too,  and colds and flu inevitably do the rounds. In India it is the monsoon time that is the worst. Luckily there are a range of drinks – chais and infusions – that at least alleviate the symptoms, and perhaps even shorten the length of the suffering.

A Karha, or Kadha, is an Ayurvedic drink made with herbs and spices that are simmered in water to extract their benefits. Karha are generally made with whole spices, herbs and other ingredients found in all Indian households, so they are inexpensive ways to strengthen immunity and fight infections.

One such herb is Tulsi, or Indian Holy Basil. It is a powerful herb in many respects. We have a number of recipes that make use of the properties of Tulsi.

In this recipe it is combined with the classic trio of spices called CCF – cumin, coriander and fennel, and it adds some cloves and cardamom as well. I know you will enjoy it, and it will help your cold if you have one. It also makes you feel incredibly warm and toasty. May you get well soon.

Similar recipes include Tulsi Chai, Tulsi, Mint and Lemon Verbena Tea, Tulsi Rasam, Ginger and Tulsi Tea.

Browse all of our Chai recipes and all of our Indian drinks. All of our Indian recipes are here, and the Indian Essentials Series is here. Or explore our Early Summer dishes.

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Sukku Malli Coffee | Chukku Kaapi

This is a recipe for a tonic (kashayam) that is like a tea, but is called a coffee. Indeed some recipes actually include coffee powder, but the version that we make will leave that as an option. The reason that it is called a coffee, we believe, is that a powder is made and then a teaspoon or so of the powder is used to make the hot drink. Just like making instant coffee.

It is a South Indian recipe, and is excellent to drink at any time (once per day), and 2 or 3 times a day if you are ill. It is good for a number of ailments – colds, nasal congestion, fever, headaches, and digestion issues.

The amount of dry ginger (Sukku) in the drink may be too much for first time users. The Malli (coriander seeds) tempers it, but reduce the amount of powder used until you get used to the heat.

Similar recipes include Yogj Chai, Ayurvedic Chai, and Ginger and Tulsi Tea.

Browse all of our Indian drinks, and all of our Drinks. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Mid Summer dishes.

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Dr. Kilkani’s Ayurvedic Chai

Another wonderful Chai recipe

This is the chai recipe given to me by an Ayurvedic doctor from Pune, India. He would visit Sydney regularly to give courses and I was lucky enough to attend several of them.

His chai recipe is not dependent on ratios, just the ingredients. Mix them to your own taste preferences. The best way is to make a small jar of chai blend, and then use the mix to make your morning cuppa.

Similar recipes include Sukku Malli Coffee, Tim’s Chai, Chai for Colds, Spring Chai, and Illaichi Chai.

You might like to also browse all of our Chai recipes. all of our Drinks, and our Indian recipes. Our Indian Essentials are here. Or browse our collection of Mid Spring dishes.

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Tim’s Chai

Tim says that

Chai is an art that must be discovered. The ingredients are the map but the combination is your own journey. The secret is in the intention of the heart.

It’s true, and there is much that you will discover as you make Chai. How to bring it together to get the best flavours. Which spices work best with your body. Which spices work best in the different seasons. Whether you have the patience to make chai well. Are you too impatient? How to keep yourself healthy with the combination of spices, and how to bring yourself back to health when you are out of balance. Which milk to use, whether you add ghee or coconut oil at all to your chai. Does a pinch of salt help? Which chai relaxes you and which invigorates you?

All of these and much more is just part of your individual Chai Journey.

Why not take that Chai Journey with us? Try Dr. Kilkani’s Ayurvedic ChaiChai Masala for Relief of Colds, Illaichi Chai, Peppery Chai and Ashram Chai.

Explore all of our other Chai recipes. Or what about our Teas? And browse all of our Indian recipes. Our Indian Essentials are here. Would you like to explore our Mid Autumn dishes?

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Ayurvedic CCF Tea | Cumin, Coriander and Fennel Tea | A Spring Detoxification Tea

Get rid of winter blues with this Spring tea.

A delicious tea that is perfect for Spring. Nicknamed CCF tea, Cumin, Coriander and Fennel Tea is a simple and well known Ayurvedic recipe. In Ayurveda, teas are the traditional method of delivering the medicinal effects herbs and spices to the body. They are generally made by seeping a single herb or spice, or a blend, in hot water.

CCF tea is said to be detoxifying, helpful in losing weight, and in burning up the excess of spring moisture. The wetness of Spring rains can cause runny noses and digestive mucus, including sever swelling.

CCF tea is also said to stoke your metabolism and digestive fire, restoring vitality where winter sluggishness abounds. This is something that I certainly need. It warms your circulation and clears any water retention. Its mild bitterness revs up the spring detoxification process and purifies the blood. It restores tone and tightness to swollen spring tissues. It is a soothing formula that reduces agitation and inflammation. It restores a calm clarity and spaciousness to a tense mind. How can you not drink it? This information is from Joyful Belly‘s wonderful blog full of Ayurvedic information. Begin to make CCF when the daffodils start to bloom – a sure sign that spring is approaching.

Join me as I drink this with meals every day for 2 weeks.

You might like to check out a similar tea – Pitta Tea – also suitable for Spring. You might enjoy The Making of Herbal Teas.

Other similar recipes include Ginger Root and Turmeric Tea, 5 C’s Golden Spiced Tea, and Yogi Tea.

All of our teas are here, and Ayurvedic Hints here. Or simply explore our Early Spring Recipes.

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Dates and Saffron Soaked in Spiced Ghee | An Ancient Rasayana

For millennia, dates have been considered an energy giving tonic by many cultures. Taken to the next level by Ayurveda (the Indian traditional medical system), dates are combined with other healing and energy giving substances – ghee, saffron, cardamom, cinnamon and ginger. Rich and sweet, Dates and Saffron Soaked in Spiced Ghee is said to nourish and revitalize your deepest tissues. This mixture is a classic rasayana, a tonic for rejuvenation. It is also an ancient love potion! Whether you want to love another person, or your life, or just find more happiness in your day, this is definitely or you.

Healing and love making, what more is need from a tonic that is more like a snack than medicine? It is said to strengthen immunity as well as aid digestion.tes and Alm

You might like to also try our Dates Milk to fight Fatigue.  Try some other Ayurvedic dishes: Cardamom, Coriander and Fennel Tea, Ginger and Tulsi Tea, and Diet and Consciousness.

Also try Saffron, Dates and Almond Rice, and Saffron and Rose Scented Aubergine.

Have a look at other Date recipes, and our Ayurveda recipes. Or browse our Indian recipes. You might like to check our Late Spring recipes here.

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Cardamom, Coriander and Fennel Herbal Tea

Try this tea/herbal infusion, but not before bed. It is slightly diuretic so may disturb your sleep. It is another of the great Spring Detox teas, all of which are a variation on a theme. This is one of the first such teas that I made, and was instantly aware of its properties. Oh the power of herbs and spices.

Please also check out similar Teas – Pitta Tea, and Cumin, Coriander and Fennel Tea, – both also suitable for Spring. Read The Making of Herbal Teas, and enjoy the 5 C’s Golden Spiced Tea, and Yogi Tea.

All of our teas are here, and Ayurvedic Hints here. Or simply explore our Early Spring Recipes.

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Heavenly Gentle Chai

There is something about Chai that makes everything Ok again.

Chai. Aaah, the very word invokes relaxation. In colder weather it comes into its own with its warming, comforting and nourishing emotive qualities.

Are you looking for similar recipes? Try Sri Lankan Chai, Tim’s Chai, Chai Masala for Relief of Colds, Seva Devi’s Ashram Chai, Peppery Chai, and Illiachi Chai.

What about trying Cardamom Spiced Coffee? Or for a herbal tea, there is Ginger and Tulsi Tea.

Feel free to browse all of our Chai recipes here, or our general Tea recipes here. All of our drinks can be found here. Explore our Indian Recipes and our Indian Essentials. You might also enjoy to take some time and explore our Mid Winter recipes.

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Dates Milk to Fight Fatigue | Kharjoor Ksheera

Dates are quite a wonderful food item. Lately I have been buying them from a local Afghan grocery. Their dates are fat and juicy and are perfect for snacking.

Dates are used in several cultures as strong healing ingredients, and fighters of energy lapses. Enjoy this drink morning or night to overcome energy sapping tiredness. Dates are soaked in milk for some hours to make the tonic. It is surprisingly sweet and delicious, not at all a medicinal taste.

You might like to also try our Dates and Saffron Soaked in Spiced Ghee.  Try some other Ayurvedic recipes: Cardamon, Coriander and Fennel Tea, Ginger and Tulsi Tea, and Diet and Consciousness.

Enjoy our other Date recipes. Or explore our Ayurveda recipes. Perhaps you would like to browse our Indian recipes here. You might like to check our Late Spring recipes here.

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Cardamom Spiced Coffee

Are you wishing that you could have a nice spiced coffee, the way that Chai adds spices to the humble black tea to create a wonderful, headily aromatic drink that is both warming and nourishing? Well, you can. Apart from some small pockets of this planet, it has been a well kept secret. But let that be no longer.

The simplest way to spice up your coffee is to add some cardamom. This elixir is common in Israel and the Middle East as well as India. Make your coffee as usual, adding some cardamom seeds, or crushed cardamom pods to the coffee grounds. The bitterness of good strong coffee with the sweet, pungent flavour of cardamom is not to be underestimated. Not only does cardamom coffee taste delicious but in Ayurvedic medicine the cardamom is reputed to reduces the acid in coffee and neutralise the over-stimulating effects of caffeine.

But it doesn’t end there. Other spices can be added too. Cloves, coriander, fennel, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger can be added – singly or in a mix.

Why not also try Unusual Coffees, and Barley Coffee.

You might also like to browse all of our other Coffee recipes and our Chai suggestions.

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Buttery Steamed Kitchari | Khichuri

Steaming brings a different characteristic to kitchari

You can make kitchari in many ways – in a slow over overnight, in a rice cooker, using a pressure cooker, in a thermos too indeed, in a normal manner on the stove top in a saucepan. You can even steam it.

Yes, Kitchari can be made by steaming. Reading Vasant Lad’s book on Ayurveda for Self Healing this morning, I thought I might make some kitchari as we are eating very lightly for a week. The results are amazing – buttery and divine.

It takes a while to cook, so put it on early, while you are pottering around, doing yoga or catching up on ironing. It can be made in your Rice Cooker if it has a steam setting. Using the rice cooker that I have, it takes 2.5 cups water (more, if you like a soft, moist kitchari) and I cook it for 2 hours. Ponni rice is another alternative to Sona Masori (both available at Indian groceries), or use any commonly available short grain rice or use basmati.

Similar recipes include Moraiya Kitchari with Yoghurt, Ven Pongal, and Cracked Wheat and Mung Kitchari.

You can browse all of our Kitchari recipes here, and our Rice recipes. Explore our Ayurvedic recipes. Our Indian recipes are here and our Indian Essentials here. Or take some time to explore our Mid Autumn recipes.

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Pitta Tea | For Rainy Weather | A Household Essential

Rainy weather tea

I like to drink a cuppa tea each day. It can be anything, white, green, brown, black. Fermented. Not. Herbal, spices or flowers. Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Ayurvedic. Gingery. Minty. Rosebuds. Dried apples. Dried mandarin skins. You name it, I drink it. I even grow it! (Lemongrass, lemon verbena, cardamom leaves, kaffir lime leaves, parsley, thyme, sage, rosemary…)

Just a note. In India, where so much of our tea comes from, Tea is Tea – real, proper, genuine tea. Anything else is something else. Here, “tea” means something, anything, that is infused in hot water.

Pitta tea, an ayurvedic tea very good for Rainy weather (here, late Autumn and late winter/pre spring weather), is quite drying, so I also make it when I need something to stop runny noses and other unpleasant symptoms of colds and flu.

You might like to read The Making of Herbal Teas.

Similar Teas include Cumin, Coriander and Fennel Tea, Unusual Herbal Teas, The 5 C’s Golden Spiced Tea, and Yogi Tea.

You can browse all our tea recipes and our Chai recipes. Or explore our Mid Autumn recipes.

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Tulsi | Tulasi | Thulasi | Indian Holy Basil | An Essential Ingredient in Every Kitchen and Medicine Chest

Tulsi, a medicine chest in a sacred herb.

Tulsi is an amazing herb, indigenous to the Indian subcontinent. The word “tulsi” means “the incomparable plant“.  It is a bushy shrub that grows up to 2 metres in height. The plant has hairy stems with leaves that are oval and serrated of about 5cm in length – the colors ranging from light green to dark purple, depending on the variety. The plant has delicate lavender-colored flowers, and its fruit consists of tiny rust-colored nuts. There are two main varieties, the one with the green leaves is called Rama or Shri tulsi and the one with the reddish leaves is called Krishna or Shyama tulsi.

Tulasi can also be spelt as Tulsi or Thulasi, or called Holy Basil. Don’t get it confused with Thai or Sth East Asian Holy Basil, it is an Indian Holy Basil and quite different to the Thai herb.

Are you looking for Tulsi Recipes? You might like to try Tulsi Rasam, Tulsi, Mint and Cinnamon Chai, and Phanta Tea with Tulsi.

Browse all of our Tulasi recipes, and our Ayurveda notes.

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Ginger and Tulsi Tea | Tulasyadi Phanta | For when you need to rest

Phanta Tea is a beautiful, relaxing tea. Just what you need!

Tulsi tea with ginger is very good for you, especially in early spring. Ayurvedically, it is good for sinusitis, flu, hayfever, bronchitis, asthma and some fevers. (Consult your Ayurvedic practictioner.) Phanta is a hot infusion in Ayurveda.

It is gentle and calming, reducing Vata and Kapha, but raising Pitta. Drink it at a time that you can relax and take some bed rest. It is best to avoid cold for a couple of hours after drinking.

Tulsi is the Holy Basil of India, with a taste somewhere between mint and basil. You can often buy Tulsi tea in organic and health shops. If I can’t find Tulsi, I make this tea with ordinary basil and it still works wonders.

You can read more about the extraordinary healthy properties of Tulasi here.  Tulasi can also be spelt as Tulsi or Thulasi, or called Holy Basil. Don’t get it confused with Thai or Sth East Asian Holy Basil, it is an Indian Holy Basil and quite different to the Thai herb. You can see our Tulsi recipes here.

Similar teas include Liquorice Ginger Chai, Spring Chai, Dr. Kilkani’s Ayurvedic Chai, Longan and Ginger Tea, Ginger Root and Turmeric Tea, Rosebud and Borage Flower Tea, and Cumin, Coriander and Ginger Tea.

Our Tulasi recipes are here, and our Ayurveda recipes here. You might like to browse our other Teas as well. Or explore our Mid Spring recipes.

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Ayurvedic Spice Infusions or “Teas” | Indian Flavours

Simple infusions of spices.

Insufions, or “teas”, can be invigorating or relaxing, and can be made of tea, spices, dried fruits, herbs, dried peels, or some combination. In India I discovered the joys of very simple infusions – a couple of spices, water, and a delicious, calming, gentle beverage is born. One that can be drunk hot from the pot, left to cool to room temperature or on our 45C summer days, iced from the fridge.

You might also like to try Tulsi, Mint and Lemon Verbena Tea, Five Cs Golden Tea, Phanta Tea, or Gratitude Teas.

Explore our other teas and chai drinks, and browse our Ayurveda recipes. All of our drinks are here. Or browse our easy Late Winter recipes.

Continue reading “Ayurvedic Spice Infusions or “Teas” | Indian Flavours”