Monsoon and chai go hand-in-hand, and with heavy downpours outside, our craving for a hot cup of chai is stronger than ever before. Brewed to perfection, tea comforts us from within and helps us enjoy the rhythmic rainfall even more. But if you notice, you will find people having their unique preferences when it comes to tea. While some like the kadak masala chai, others enjoy first-flush tea without milk or sugar. Then there are choices as per region and state – in Hyderabad, people go gaga over Irani chai, whereas Kashmiris enjoy their kahwa throughout the year. Amidst such diversity, we have often seen people getting confused between kahwa and masala tea, especially the ones made without milk.
While we agree that the use of common masalas can leave you confused, if you observe closely, there are striking differences between the two. Today, we will take you through a few of these differences, putting an end to your confusion once and for all. But before that, let’s find out the basic similarities between the two beverages.
Also Read: Don’t Make These 5 Mistakes While Sipping Chai During Monsoon
What Are the Similarities Between Kashmiri Kahwa and Masala Tea?
Kahwa finds its roots in Kashmir, whereas masala tea is a very popular drink in various parts of India. If you try both beverages together, you will notice two major similarities – in terms of spices and health benefits.
Similarity 1: Spices
Both kahwa and masala tea have a strong usage of cinnamon and cardamom. In both recipes, these spices add a rich aroma and a sweet taste to the teas.
Similarity 2: Health Benefits
Both drinks are considered great for health, thanks to the use of healthy spices in the recipes. They help boost immunity, keep you warm, and prevent several seasonal infections. Besides, these hot drinks are loaded with antioxidants that help maintain a healthy gut and allow your body to function smoothly.
Also Read: How To Make Kashmiri Kahwa Tea For Good Immunity And Weight Loss
Kashmiri Kahwa Vs. Masala Tea: Know the Difference:
1. Use of Tea Leaves:
While masala tea is usually made from tea powder or CTC tea, kahwa includes green tea for a crystal-clear colour. This makes the latter a bit lighter and healthier in nature.
2. Brewing Process:
Masala tea is prepared using two processes. You either brew whole masalas in water and then add tea leaves to it, or prepare the tea and add powdered masala to it. On the other hand, kahwa (or kehwa) is traditionally prepared in a samovar – a unique brass utensil that consists of a “fire container” running as a central cavity. This helps the tea stay perpetually hot.
While cinnamon and cardamom remain the same, both teas use various other ingredients that make them very different from each other. While a tea masala is usually prepared with cinnamon, cardamom, bay leaf, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, etc., kahwa has a strong use of saffron, almonds, and rose petals, besides the usual cardamom, cinnamon, and cloves.
Due to the use of CTC tea, masala chai is stronger than its fancy counterparts. Whereas kahwa is light, aromatic, and helps you warm up instantly, courtesy of the use of green tea.
Now that you are aware of the basic differences between the teas, how about making a cup for yourself and enjoying the season? Here are the masala tea and kahwa recipes for you.