All You Wanted To Know About Kashmiri Kahwaby Ranjeeta Mundhra Senior Export Executive Kahwa, also known as “mogil chay”, is a wine-colored hot beverage that has been brewing in the valley of Kashmir since what seems forever. Kashmiris have been enjoying the delicious Kahwa to keep themselves warm in the wintry climate of the region.
History of Kahwa
The history of Kahwa goes back to the Kushan Empire that reigned Yarkand valley in Xinjiang Area during the 1st and 2nd century AD. Most likely, the consumption of Kahwa spread from there to other parts of the region. In the recent times, Kahwa owes its popularity among non-Kashmiris to Kashmiri Pundits who have migrated to other parts of the country.
Traditional Method of Preparation
Traditionally, the beverage is prepared in a “samovar”, which is a metal urn with a spigot. Green tea leaves are fused into boiling water to which spices like cinnamon and cardamom are added. The special spice added to Kahwa that gives it the rich color is saffron. In India, saffron is a spice that is exclusively grown in parts of Kashmir. The beverage is then topped with crushed almonds. Sometimes it is prepared without the green tea, as a herbal infusion. People usually add milk while giving it to children or the elderly. Kahwa is part of Kashmiri hospitality where guests are served hot servings in shallow cups called “Khosas”. It is mandatory part of many rituals in the Kashmiri tradition.
Health benefits of Kahwa
Apart from the rich taste, Kahwa has been so popular all through the ages also because of the amazing health benefits that it gives. Let us look at some of them:
- The fact that Kahwa gives energy while being caffeine free is alone enough to make it score over tea or coffee.
- It helps reduce weight by burning excess fat.
- The anti-oxidants present in the green tea are excellent ingredients to protect the heart from damaging effects of free radicals. They also help in giving glowing skins.
- Saffron is known to help in alleviating depression; perhaps that is the reason why the drink is offered to guests to cheer up the spirits.
There is no one way to prepare Kahwa. It can be customized to individual preferences by adjusting the spices or availability of certain ingredients. For example, some people add rose petals to give it a heavenly fragrance. In some parts of Kashmir, people add fresh green apples that give a hint of sourness and of course, the delicious apple flavor.
So now that you know so much about this amazing drink, you can go ahead and make your own cup of Kashmiri Kahwa, or you can just order it online at sites like Te-a-me.
Ranjeeta Mundhra is a tea connoisseur and a master blender at TE-A-ME Teas. Her love for tea and different cultures keeps her busy. When she is not working, she likes to cook food, go dancing, and travel far and wide.
Created on Dec 31st 1969 19:00. Viewed 0 times.
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