As the winter fog and freeze spread everywhere, all we want to do is slide under a cosy blanket and enjoy a hot cup of tea. This gloomy season, move from your regular cup of tea and experience the magic of a healthy and comforting cup of Kashmiri Kahwa. Packed with a number of nourishing and fragrant ingredients, this delicious tea is a full package.
The kahwa or qehwa is popular in the Indian subcontinent and parts of Central Asia. The exotic beverage is traditionally consumed during breakfast in the Kashmir valley and contains a blend of green tea leaves, saffron, cinnamon, cardamom and cloves. To make it richer, it is usually garnished with flaked almonds, walnuts and dried fruits like cherries and apricots.
According to a study done by researchers Sumaya Farooq and Amit Sehgal, this beautiful beverage has promising antioxidant and antigenotoxic potential and benefits.
This tea helps improve digestion and aids in cleaning your digestive tract. A healthy digestive system can lead to enhanced elimination of toxins from your body as well as improve the absorption of nutrients.
The cinnamon in this tea is great for the body’s metabolism. This helps in regulating your blood sugar level and has a powerful anti-diabetic effect. It also suppresses appetite and helps in weight loss.
Kahwa is rich in antioxidants that come from almonds and walnuts. Antioxidants boost your immune system and reduce stress levels in your body. According to the Mayo Clinic, antioxidants may play a role in protecting you from heart disease and cancer.
Soothes your skin– Saffron and other antioxidants present in the tea help maintain optimal health of your skin. Vitamin B12 and C helps prevent pigmentation of the skin. Almonds being rich in vitamin E nourishes and softens the skin.
The warmth generated from saffrons and the intense spice mix helps in clearing away chest congestion and is good for sore throat. It also helps in removing phlegm during cold.
Kahwa is traditionally prepared in a metal container called samovar. Its is fairly easy to make at home and will fill your home with an aromatic fragrance.
2 tablespoons green tea leaves (you can use teabags too, but they won’t give the same flavour and richness)
1 Cinnamon stick
2 cardamom (green)
Few Zanjabeel Saffron strands (or any other saffron)
Almond bits (optional)
*In a saucepan put the cinnamon stick, cardamom and saffron and bring it to boil
*Let the boiled and flavour infused water sit till it becomes warm. Then add the green tea leaves and bring the water to boil. *Do not over-boil it to avoid bitterness.
*Strain it with a strainer into a cup or a glass. Garnish it with almond bits and enjoy.