What is Kashmiri Kahwa & How To Make It At Home?

Oct 13 , 2022


Mayukh Tea

What is Kashmiri Kahwa & How To Make It At Home?

Although tea "Camellia" sinensis" was colonized as a plantation crop and mass-produced for European consumption, it is not new to the Himalayan region. The valleys of Yunnan had been cultivating tea in their fields for their subsistent consumption since ancient times. So, tea had been consumed in various forms throughout civilizations and empires around the Himalayan Valleys. One such variety was Kahwa, which has been widely consumed throughout the Arabian and West Asian regions. Let’s find out everything about Kashmiri Kahwa.

What is Kahwa in Jammu Kashmir?

In Kashmiri, “Kahwa” means “sweetened tea” It might also be derived from the Arabic word “qahwah” which is a word for coffee. So, kahwa is a green tea flavored with various spices, saffron, nuts, and sweetened. Traditional Kashmiri tea is prepared in a “Samovar”, a brass kettle that originates in present-day Russia. The Kashmiri People make huge quantities of tea and keep it in a coal-fired vessel. It remains warm for a prolonged period and people sip it as the day progresses, especially during the cold winter months.

Where did Kashmiri Kahwa originate?

The exact history of Kashmiri Kahwa is debated. The tea leaves are said to find their way to Kashmir through the Spice Route. Many historians also believe that Kashmiri Kahwa originated during the rule of the Kushan Empire around 1 -2 AD.

What is Kashmiri Kahwa made of?

This popular beverage is prepared by boiling green tea leaves and infusing them with spices such as Kashmiri saffron, cloves, cardamom, and sometimes cinnamon. People also add rose petals to their tea. The tea is then sweetened with honey and then topped with slivered dried nuts such as walnuts, almonds, and pistachios. Some people also prefer to prepare Kahwa as an herbal infusion of spices without any green tea. Traditionally, Kashmiri Kahwa tea is prepared in Samovar. There is a central cavity in the “Samovar” for placing hot coal, and around it, water is boiled and ingredients are added to prepare this special Kehwa Chai with a delicate taste. The Samovar with the live coal helps to keep the tea perpetually hot.

Is Kashmiri Kahwa good for health?

Kashmiri Kahwa tea is packed with natural ingredients that have been known to soothe the body and have many health benefits. Adding spices to the brew enhances the beneficial qualities of the tea and makes it an instant reliever for body-aches in the cold Himalayan climate. Kahwa also cleanses the digestive system and keeps cholesterol levels in check for a healthy heart. The tea helps in the generation of body heat, and regulation of blood pressure and acts as a remedy for cough and cold. So you should try to include it in your lifestyle.

 Kashmiri Kahwa Benefits:

  • Green tea is rich in antioxidants and natural polyphenols that keep the system youthful and vigorous
  • Cardamom enhances digestion and also alleviates headaches
  • Cinnamon keeps the body warm
  •  Saffron which is rich in Vitamin B12, Vitamin E, and Vitamin C and also strengthens immunity
  • It is a good stress-buster and improves metabolism thus helping in weight loss
  • Kahwa tea also helps in maintaining oral hygiene
Also Read: 5 Immunity Boosting Detox Teas To Start Your Fitness Journey

How to Make Kashmiri Kahwa: An Easy Recipe 

This traditional beverage from the Himalayas is a great drink for cold winter days. Even though you might not have a copper or brass Samovar, you can easily prepare Kashmiri Kehwah at home with a few ingredients. Enjoy it throughout the year as a pick-me-up after work or a celebratory beverage during festivals.
Here is A simple recipe for Kashmiri Kahwa for serving 2 people
  1. 3 cups of water (soft mineral water works best)
  2. 1 teaspoon Kashmiri green tea 
  3. 2-3 whole green cardamoms (crushed)
  4. 2-3 strands of pure Kesar (saffron)
  5. 1-2 cloves
  6. ½ an inch of cinnamon stick
  7. ½ teaspoon of dried rose petals 
  8. 1 teaspoon of honey
  9. 1 teaspoon of dried nuts and fruits of your choice (slivered) 
Options include: almonds, cashew nuts, walnuts, pistachios  

How to prepare the perfect kahwa:

  • Heat 3 cups of water in a saucepan or teapot over medium-high heat.
  • Once there is a rolling boil in the water, reduce the heat 
  • Add in cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, and dried rose petals, and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes 
  • Turn the heat off
  • Infuse the green tea and cover the lid
  • Let the kehwa steep for 3-4 minutes 
  • Using a strainer, serve the chai in cups 
  • Add a few nuts and a saffron strand to the cups 
  • Sweeten with honey and enjoy hot

Additional Tips to Make the Best Kashmiri Kahwa 

Using the best quality ingredients makes all the difference. The Kashmiri variety of green tea work best for an authentic kehwa, but you can also substitute it with other varieties such as Darjeeling green tea. It is also important to use good quality saffron which has not been adulterated.  You may substitute honey with sugar or drink your tea without any sweetener. Trying a variety of nuts such as pistachios also works well. 
Also Read: How To Brew The Perfect Masala Chai

Buy kashmiri kahwa online

Don’t have the time to shop for every ingredient. You can easily shop for pre-packaged Kashmiri kahwa blends online. There are sellers on Amazon that you can buy from. Do verify authentic sellers and check reviews before buying tea online.

Shop Mayukh Tea  

Mayukh Kashmiri Kahwa tea is a special blend of Darjeeling green tea and spices. Our Kashmiri Kahwa is a result of the careful blending of quality Kahwa ingredients that include Saffron, cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves. These spices have delved into premium Darjeeling green tea to brew a Himalayan medley of flavors, enriched by antioxidants and immunity boosters.

Here are some more teas that you may like – Lemongrass Chai, Pudina Chai, Masala TeaGinger Tea, Turmeric Tea ,Orange Tea

*Note: What is Kashmiri tea called? 

Kashmiri Kahwa should not be confused with Sheer chai or Noon Chai, which is the traditional Kashmiri pink tea prepared using gunpowder tea, milk, and baking soda. 

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