Goodbye summer’s afternoon diet coke, hello chai latté de fall.
Now that my coffee shop is just 18 strides from my office desk—when you work at home you have the luxury of doing things like actually counting how far the kitchen is from the computer—I’m finding that my afternoon routine has made a major switcheroo.
Lately I’ve been craving a different afternoon pick me up rather than the cold diet soda I sometimes wished could be pumped straight into my veins. I’ve been craving a cuppa something hot.
I tend to get all wrapped up in what I’m working on, so lately I’ve been making it a point to get up from my chair, move away from the computer screen, stretch my legs and clear my head with a 5-minute afternoon timeout.
My new favorite ritual is partaking of a moment in the waning afternoon sun, sitting on my deck with my chihuahua in my lap and a simple coffee drink in my hand. Lately my favorite has been an afternoon latte. Warm, milky and creamy.
I’ve been making them for myself the past few days and adding a dose of Tipu’s Chai Now, an instant Chai mix from a sweet little company based in Montana. Chai tea in Montana? Apparently so. And no, there’s nary a sign of steers or roping cowboys on their packaging.
Savoring the warming flavors of Chai—cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg—got me thinking I should be cooking something tasty that included the same flavors I love drinking.
And then Smudge started asking me for cookies. And then I put two and two together and waah-laah, Chai Shortbread Cookies were being created in my kitchen.
Oddly, I was compelled to add chocolate and sea salt. I’m sure you’ll understand.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar together until fluffy. Add vanilla and blend well. In a separate bowl combine flour, salt and Chai mix and fluff with a fork or whisk. Add dry ingredients to butter mixture and mix until ingredients come together. Mixture will be crumbly. Mold dough into an 8-inch log, cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour or 20 minutes in the freezer.
- With a serrated bread knife cut logs into ¼-inch thick discs and place 2 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 12 minutes. Cool on a baking sheet.
- While cookies are baking, prepare the chocolate chip ganache. In a small saucepan add 1-inch of water, place a glass or heat-proof bowl filled with chocolate chips over the saucepan and bring water to a boil. Stir chocolate chips often as they melt. Add cream and mix until smooth. Remove from heat.
- Dip cookies halves into chocolate mixture and lightly sprinkle with sea salt.
Adapted from MyRecipes.com
The feeling of fall leaves us plenty of room for more chai-inspired recipes, and there’s even one you can make for dinner!
Christina makes it impossible to pass up these gorgeous little creamy Chai peaks in Dessert for Two’s Pumpkin Chai Cupcakes
Karen did it again! Nutty brown rice flour gives sweet carrots the perfect lift in Gluten-Free Goddess’ Gluten-Free Carrot Bread with Chai Spices
Yes there are a few steps and a few ingredients in this recipe created for Marsh Madness, but oh man, does Bree bring it again with Baked Bree’s Chai Latte Marshmallows
With 3 active boys to shoosh out of the house for school, Alison has found the secret to a hearty and simple breakfast with This Homemade Life’s Overnight Chai Steel Cut Oats
Staving off her Starbucks Pumpkin Chai latté addiction, Carey has given the rest of us a new addiction with Reclaiming Provincial’s Chai Iced Pumpkin Cookies
With holiday baking around the corner, I have my eye on the sweet love note of a dessert Caitlin presented to Charles in Judicial Peach’s White Chocolate Chai Truffles
The humble almond’s health benefits abound in Leanne’s spiced-up Chai Spice Roasted Almonds from Healthful Pursuit
Kita goes double Chai-time using both chai concentrate plus chai tea in Pass the Sushi’s Chai Pumpkin Spice Thumbprints
Yes! Finally! A savory main meal recipe with our feature ingredient: introducing da, da, da, dahhhhh! Dan’s Good Side’s Chai Spiced Salmon Steaks. Ah, Dan you are the man!
Disclosure: I was sent a sample pack of Tipu’s Chai Now tea but I was not compensated for this post and all opinions are my own. I just like the tea. And they’re from Montana and keeping it real in the old west.