Irani Chai

5 from 1 vote

Irani Chai (Irani Tea, Hyderabadi Dum Chai) is a Persian-influenced tea extremely popular in Hyderabad. Use my simple recipe to make this creamy tea at home.

Itani chai served in a cup.
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About Irani Chai (Hyderabadi Dum Tea)

Irani Chai (Irani Tea, Hyderabadi Tea) is a sweet, milky, and creamy Indian tea also known as Hyderabadi Dum Chai. Persian immigrants introduced it to the Indian subcontinents in the 19th century, and over the years, it evolved to suit Indian taste.

This tea is slowly brewed (dum) with warm spices such as green cardamom pods and cinnamon and then mixed with a creamy reduced-milk mixture. The creamy milk is traditionally made with milk and khoya (reduced milk solids), but some people use heavy cream, fresh cream (malai), or condensed milk.

You will find Hyderabadi chai on the menu of most Iranian cafes. The roadside tea stalls in old Hyderabad also sell this refreshing beverage. If you are a chai lover, then this milk tea must definitely be on your chai recipes-to-try list.

Hyderabadi Irani tea tastes unique and quite different from regular tea. Make it using my traditional recipe at home, and enjoy!

Here are some more tea recipes that you may like: Turmeric Ginger Tea, Masala Chai, Lemon Tea, Kashmiri Tea Kahwa, and Adrak Wali Chai.

You must also try Herbal Saffron Tea, Pudina Chai, Strawberry Tea, and Tandoori Chai.

Ingredients

Irani chai ingredients

For The Tea Decoction – The tea decoction for Hyderabadi chai is made using water, Assam tea (black tea leaves, chai patti), granulated white sugar, green cardamoms (hari elaichi), and cinnamon stick (dalchini).

To make it spicier and stronger, you can add more spices such as star anise (chakri phool), black cardamoms (badi elaichi), cloves (laung), and black peppercorns (kali mirch).

Use loose black tea powder or tea bags; that’s up to you. Adjust the sugar as per your taste.

For The Milk Mixture – Use whole milk (full-fat milk) for the best result. Khoya (Mawa or Khava) is added to this mixture to make it creamy and rich.

If khoya is unavailable, mix 2 tablespoon milk powder with 1 tablespoon milk and mix well. Use it in place of khoya.

Some people replace khoya with heavy cream, malai (fresh cream), or condensed milk. The taste will be slightly different, but you can try it. Skip adding extra sugar if using condensed milk, as it is already very sweet.

How To Make Irani Chai

Make The Tea Decoction

Add

  • 2 cups of water
  • 2 teaspoon black tea leaves (or 2 tea bags)
  • 2 teaspoon granulated white sugar
  • 2 green cardamoms (lightly crushed)
  • 1-inch piece of cinnamon stick (lightly crushed)

into a saucepan.

Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat.

Water, tea leaves, cardamom, cinnamon and sugar added to a saucepan.

Cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid and reduce the heat to low.

Note – If the lid does not fit tightly over the saucepan, you can seal it with some whole wheat flour dough to prevent any steam from escaping. You can also cover the pan with aluminum foil.

Lid closed.

Cook the tea on low heat for 30 minutes.

Ready tea decoction.

Make The Creamy Milk

While the tea is cooking on the dum, make the milk mixture.

Add 2 cups of whole milk (full-fat milk) to a saucepan and bring it to a boil on medium-high heat.

Milk added to a saucepan.

Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the milk is reduced to half. Stir frequently to avoid scorching at the bottom of the pan.

Add 2 tablespoon crumbled khoya and cook for 3-4 minutes until it is mixed well in the milk.

Khoya added to reduced milk.
Ready milk mixture.

Assemble The Irani Tea

Strain the tea using a tea strainer and pour ¼ cup of decoction into a serving cup.

Decoction strained in a cup.

Top with ¾ cup of the milk mixture and serve immediately.

Ready Irani Chai.

Serving Suggestions

This classic Iranian-style tea is traditionally served with Osmania biscuits, which are a Hyderabadi specialty, too.

This hot beverage can also be served with Bun Maska, Nankhatai, Methi Mathri, Namak Para, Khakra, Cornflakes Chivda, or any other snack for your evening tea.

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Irani Chai (Irani Tea, Hyderabadi Dum Chai) is a Persian-influenced tea extremely popular in Hyderabad. Use my simple recipe to make this creamy tea at home.
5 from 1 vote

Irani Chai Recipe (Hyderabadi Dum Tea)

Irani Chai (Irani Tea, Hyderabadi Dum Chai) is a Persian-influenced tea extremely popular in Hyderabad. Use my simple recipe to make this creamy tea at home.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients 

For The Tea Decoction

  • 2 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons Assam black tea leaves (chai patti) (or 2 tea bags)
  • 2 teaspoons granulated white sugar (adjust as per your taste)
  • 2 green cardamoms (hari elaichi) (lightly crushed)
  • 1 inch piece of cinnamon stick (dalchini) (lightly crushed)

For The Creamy Milk

  • 2 cups whole milk (full-fat milk)
  • 2 tablespoons khoya (crumbled)
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Instructions 

Make The Tea Decoction

  • Add water, tea leaves, sugar, green cardamoms, and cinnamon stick into a saucepan.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat.
  • Cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid and reduce the heat to low.
  • Cook the tea on low heat for 30 minutes.

Make The Creamy Milk

  • While the tea is cooking on dum, make the milk mixture.
  • Add milk to a saucepan and bring it to a boil on medium-high heat.
  • Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the milk is reduced to half. Stir frequently to avoid scorching at the bottom of the pan.
  • Add khoya and cook for 3-4 minutes until it is mixed well in the milk.

Assemble The Chai

  • Strain the tea using a tea strainer and pour ¼ cup of decoction in a serving cup.
  • Top with ¾ cup of the milk mixture and serve immediately.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

If the lid does not fit tightly over the saucepan, you can seal it with whole wheat flour dough to prevent steam from escaping.
If khoya is not available, then mix 2 tablespoons of milk powder with 1 tablespoon of milk and mix well. Use it in place of khoya.
Some people replace khoya with heavy cream or condensed milk. The taste will be slightly different, but you can give it a try. Skip adding any extra sugar if using condensed milk, as it is already very sweet.

Nutrition

Calories: 113kcal, Carbohydrates: 10g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 14mg, Sodium: 79mg, Potassium: 173mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 231IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 196mg, Iron: 1mg
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