We organized a cultural exchange for two days between our students and students from Castle Park Primary School, Wales. This exchange program was supported by the welsh government to know more about tea production in India. The first day SEH students presented a creative presentation in which they informed students from Wales with the help of this script. The second day was a more interactive session where they delivered their reflective journal, basically what they had learnt during this exchange. All in all, the students were provided global exposure and they got to practice their language skills in a real life environment.Introduction
As I wake up at the crack of the dawn, swiftly rubbing my eyes, I head towards the kitchen to prepare something that instantly uplifts my energy along with removing the jitteriness. Yes, I put together some spices, brew them on simmer heat while slowly adding a dash of milk, sweetener, and some dried leaves which makes my 'golden water' ready. I sip the aromatic infusion at peace while reading the newspaper, I rejoice in my 'me-time'. Can anyone guess what this golden water is?
Yes, everyone, it's the tea that is widely popular in our Indian society as it is a great way to boost your metabolism, curb your appetite, source of antioxidants, promote heart health and the list goes on.
Moreover, we Indians feel tea and conversations are like salt and pepper so they go well in every situation. Like we say -
When you are feeling sad and blue,
And have no clue what to do,
Sit down and have a cup of tea,
And a hug, one or two or maybe three,
Feel those troubles melt away
And start you on a better day
So here I am with my students as team Chai from India to welcome you all to a tea-aholic chat session to enlighten you all about the value of tea and the secret behind its fondness in India. Many untold stories are heard within the closed room, and the witness is only tea. So, open your ears for an enthralling expedition to India in our Tea-Cart, and this comes with a twist.
Our students will be asking you questions in between their conversations, so my lovely students from Wales, get set go and pen down the facts and answer them diligently in the chatbox to everyone. By the end of the presentation, we will be awarding the most participative student from the School Castle Park.
So, get set go everyone as our Indian friends are all prepared to share their experiences with all of you and reasons why tea is the most popular beverage in India.
Thank you for a power-packed start, my enthusiastic teachers. I am greatly overjoyed to be a part of this chit-chat with all of you. As I grew up, I realized the most sought-after drink in my house is chai as my mom always said a cup of tea shared with a friend is happiness tasted and time spent well. My friends from Wales must have tried Cafe Latte in a coffee shop nearest to you but have you ever tried Chai Latte? Frankly speaking, I even found it at a tea cafe a while ago. It is a blend of frothy milk with a shot of black tea. Add maple syrup for an enhanced taste. It has become my personal favourite these days, which one is yours? Do let me know in the chatbox about what kind of tea rejuvenates you?
Props like a tea shot, milk frother, Maple syrup, honey
Oh mate, this Chai latte sounds delectable. In India, we are greatly fond of things that are cooked in earthen clay pots called ‘Tandoor’ in which we cook marinated veggies, stuffed rotis, and many more delicacies. My research says Wales has restaurants like Little Tandoor, The Balti Tandoor as well as many more eateries that offer food cooked in earthen clay pots. Lately, I relished Tandoori Chai with my aunt in Hyderabad. Have a look at how it is made by everyone.Props - earthen clay pot teacup
Oh my god! This is such an interesting recipe and we should all like to try it sometime.
By the way, do you all have any idea where this tea comes from?
India is one of the largest tea producers in the world, even though over 70 percent of its tea is consumed within India itself. Isn't it surprising?
A number of renowned teas, such as Assam and Darjeeling, also grow exclusively in India. The Indian tea industry has grown to own many global tea brands and has evolved into one of the most technologically equipped tea industries in the world. In my recent interaction with my father, he told me about the leading Welsh Brew and Glengettie tea. How popular is it in your house?
Props - Darjeeling tea, Nilgiri tea, Assam tea and other popular tea bags
Oh yes! You have hit the nail on the head. I would like to add that tea is grown as a bush approximately one metre high, for ease of plucking. Bushes are grown from cuttings or clones which are carefully nurtured in nursery beds until ready for planting out. Young bushes are planted approximately 1.5 metres apart in rows with a distance of one metre between each row. In a nutshell, Tea is an aromatic beverage prepared by pouring hot or boiling water over cured or fresh leaves of Camellia sinensis. We are full of gratitude for this end product being cheaply and readily available at the grocery store near you
Props - real tea leaves (optional)
I appreciate your deeper knowledge of tea and how it is grown.
Do you know the spellings of the fresh tea leaves?
Let’s see who all can tell me the right spellings of Camellia sinensis in the chatbox.
As tea is the most loved beverage of India, my granny literally had a bag of tea recipes which included a summer cooler called Ice tea, quick relief to cold and cough recipe called Karah, the fullness of aromatic spices tea, blue tea for anxiety, pink tea, herbal teas as well as winter Kahwa. In fact, we Indians have an affinity with the classic masala tea which is made up of milk, water, tea leaves with or without spices which are brewed in a pan over simmer heat and sieved before consuming it. We call it ‘sukoon wali chai’ in Hindi which means it provides satisfaction and relaxation.
Props - different kinds of tea we drink Pink, blue, black, masala, cutting chai
Oh yes! I hold the same viewpoint.
My family members are fitness freaks, so the most preferred kind of tea is chamomile tea as it offers a variety of health benefits. Chamomile is a herb that comes from the daisy-like flowers of the Asteraceae plant family. It has been consumed for centuries as a natural remedy for several health conditions. To make chamomile tea, the flowers are dried and then infused into hot water. Many people enjoy chamomile tea as a caffeine-free alternative to black or green tea and for its earthy, somewhat sweet taste. Furthermore, chamomile tea is loaded with antioxidants that may play a role in lowering your risk of heart problems, cancer, aids digestion, and sound sleep. Just to check if my Welsh friends are all ears in the class. Can you tell me what “Sukoon wali chai” provides?
Props - Chamomile tea leaves and show how easily it can be made
While my friends are discussing so much about the variety of teas, their health benefits, and recipes. I would like to bring your attention to one of the invincible combos we relish with this so-called golden water. The versatility of masala chai and pakora is one of the reasons that they complement each other so well. You might get this combination at any of the Indian restaurants in Wales, London or Cardiff as well. Brew the perfect chai to suit your pallet and make a batch of fragrant and flavorful pakoras, and enjoy sipping on your chai and eating pakoras while it is raining outside. Does anything sound more relaxing than this? Definitely not, for Indians, it is the best snack in the monsoon season. Which is your invincible combo with tea in Wales?
Share your views in the chatbox for everyone.
Props - A tray setup of embellished tea set with a platter of mix pakoras. (should look exquisite)
I can’t agree more on this. As you talk about chill, I can recollect my trip to Kashmir where I was introduced to this ‘paradise on earth’ drink popularly known as Kashmiri kahwa. It is called a winter elixir as it is a green tea that is a blend of cinnamon, cardamom clove, Kashmiri saffron as well as whole almonds. The warmth generated from these ingredients together makes it a perfect beverage to beat the frigid winter.
The best thing about it is that it's caffeine-free and can be enjoyed by children to beat the chill and help them stay warm. It relieves stress, reduces anxiety levels, and detoxification drink along with lowering headaches. Isn't it a heavenly drink all the way coming from heaven on earth itself? My friends, you can make it easily at home as well with some home species only. I am sharing the recipe in the chatbox for everyone to try
Props - stick all the ingredients on a platter and show them
❖ 4 teaspoons green tea powder
❖ 2 inches cinnamon
❖ 1 strand saffron
❖ 5 cup water
❖ 2 green cardamom
❖ 2 tablespoon sugar
● Step 1 Boil water along with the spices
To prepare this tea, add water in a saucepan along with cinnamon, green cardamom, and saffron strands to it. Bring them to a boil.
● Step 2 Add green tea powder
Add the green tea powder and sugar to it and simmer for a few minutes.
● Step 3 Enjoy your Kashmiri Kahwa tea!
Now, strain the Kashmiri Kahwa tea into cups and serve hot.
1. You can garnish the tea with slivered almonds, pistachios, cashews or dried rose petals.
2. You can use any green tea to prepare this recipe if you cannot find Kahwa green tea.
3. You can also use honey instead of sugar to keep the tea healthy.
Thank you buddy, my mom makes delectable kahwa in winter for all of us.
As we dive into the rich culture of our world-famous tea, I have an experience to share that happened in the Bollywood city of India, Mumbai. As I was wandering on the streets, I came across vendors who were selling Mumbai’s quintessential 'cutting chai'. Typically, in Mumbai it is half a cup of tea, which is less in quantity and price but just enough to refresh your senses. Workers, labourers, and low-wagers are the major market of this tea.
Cutting chai literally translates to 'cut into half' which means a small quantity of tea. Initially, cutting chai was only offered at ‘tapri’ or chai stalls, but now many modern cafes are also serving it along with accompaniments. Anyway, if you visit any Indian restaurants in Wales or London, you will be served this cutting chai in the same glasses so that you get the true feeling of India in a foreign land.
Props - cutting chai glasses on a stand served in contemporary style in Mumbai and around India with a small pack of Parle-G biscuit.
Live demonstration of the cutting chai in 45 secs to 60 secs while making it in front of children and explaining about its aromatic taste and how it ignites your senses
Props - induction, pan, ginger, cardamon, tulsi, sugar, jaggery, milk
This is such a fruitful conversation, I must say.
Before we proceed, We would like to know from our Welsh friends in which weather Indians enjoy pakora and chai? Winter or monsoon Send your answers in the chatbox.
All of you have discussed so many aspects of tea around India. Let’s also bring our attention to how tea is prepared and enjoyed in Southern India. People are addicted to drinking a cup of masala tea. As we know that India is known for its diverse culture, when it comes to choosing the right cup to drink tea, it cannot forget its diversity. Tea is served in different cups in different parts of India. In Rajasthan, people drink tea in small earthen cups whereas, in Northern India, a glass mug is what fulfils the urge. As you go down south, people drink it in steel glasses. The selection of glasses is an important part of serving tea. In Wales, tea is best enjoyed in a cup and saucer or a mug with pancakes, macaroons, muffins. Am I right?
Props - the variety of cups on a rectangular tray. Stick it with tape on the bottom.
All my co-mates have discussed tea from plucking leaves to a plethora of tea estates and brewing it to best taste and we have understood it minutely. Have you pondered on how tea actually reaches our doorstep as an end customer? There are companies who work relentlessly to make it happen with state-of-the-art machinery, manpower as well as packaging. Some of the best-selling brands of Indian teas are - Tata tea gold, Wagh Bakri, Organic India, Red Label, Brooke Bond, Taj Mahal, etc. You might be surprised but Brooke Bond, Tata, and Wagh Bakri are the most popular Indian Tea brands in the U.K
Let’s understand it closely through this video.
Props - Tata Tea Gold, Wagh Bakri, Organic india, Red Label, Brooke Bond, Taj Mahal (smallest packs of all for reference)
My friends and I are full of exuberance as we reach the end of the conversation. We have discussed tea at length pointing out its benefits, varieties, types grown in India, and some of the famous ones which are readily available at every home. However, did we even realise some things that we can actually learn from this three-letter word ‘TEA’
We will highlight what exactly tea teaches us -
1. It's all about how you make your tea which means In life, as with tea, satisfaction comes down to how you make it.
2. Steep, but not for too long which means if you brew your tea too much it might lose its flavours and so is life timing is everything.
Props - Write the highlights on a paper and decorate it
3. Take time to cool which implies sip your tea too soon and you’ll get burned! Many have learned the hard way that it’s best to let the tea cool first.
4. Self soothe when possible. Much associate tea with relaxation and self-care. A spicy cup of ginger tea is perfect for a cold, as is chamomile to help you sleep. We all benefit from knowing when to slow down and engage in small, gentle acts of nurturing.
5. Don’t rush things, rather enjoy the moment, live in it, feel it, taste it, enjoy it. Time is now.
Props - Pictures of how we can cool down like tea, relaxation pictures
6. Revel In Variety in a way that whether its herbal, floral, or black, each blend delights with its own unique combination of flavours, aromas, and colours as tea is popular for its varieties. Most tea drinkers would be missing out if they only stuck to one type. Life is the same way. It benefits us to try as many different options as we can.
7. Last but not least, there is much joy to be found in simplicity. We know life is often complicated but when we stop and reflect, we know it's simple things that matter. Just like a cup of tea, so enjoy your next cup and fill it with happiness.
Before we end this tea-oholic session, I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude to Lynn ma’am and students from Wales who actively participated in the quiz and shared their viewpoints in ‘Our Chai and Your Tea’ Chat session. So remember my friends -
“Life is a cup of tea, it is all about how you make it”
Props - Quote on paper with big sheet
Thank you and Indian Flag on another sheet