As the year draws to a close, instead of champagne on ice to toast the possibilities of a new year, it is fitting that we borrow a tea flavored with salt recipe from Mahatma Gandhi, a global icon of peace, to honor our loved ones and wish for peace upon us all. The most recent attack in Germany at a beloved Christmas market especially hits home for us, make us cherish and realise these are privileged moments spent with loved ones around us.
There’s an interesting story surrounding Gandhi’s tea with salt recipe. In 1930, Gandhi embarked on his famous 24-day Salt March with the concept of Satyagraha: ‘truth’ and ‘resistance’. This approach he took from the Boston Tea Party that began the American Independence struggle. He wrote:
“EVEN AS AMERICA WON ITS INDEPENDENCE THROUGH SUFFERING, VALOUR AND SACRIFICE, SO SHALL INDIA, IN GOD’S GOOD TIME ACHIEVE HER FREEDOM BY SUFFERING, SACRIFICE AND NON-VIOLENCE”
The march was intended as a revolt against the British imposed salt taxes on Indian ground. Gandhi and 78 men walked to Dandi to boil the earth and remove salt, breaking the British Raj salt laws that would have given the British a monopoly on salt trade. After reaching Dandi and producing salt, Gandhi continued his pilgrimage south, attending congress meetings and making salt along the way.
This action drew lots of media attention, and resulted in Gandhi’s temporary imprisonment. Despite the preventative government measures, these results made the issue balloon in size, drawing supporters of the movement from all over India and the world, and cementing opposition to British sovereignty, with even British attitudes beginning to change.
And so it was that in 1931, almost one year after the muddy toil of the Salt March and the civil disobedience that followed, Gandhi sat down at the second Round Table Conference in London with the then Viceroy of India Lord Irwin, and signed the Gandhi-Irwin pact, which removed the tax on salt and discontinued the civil disobedience movement by the Indian National Congress.
According to report, when Gandhi sat down with Lord Irwin for signing the historic pact, tea was offered. When Irwin asked if he would like sugar or cream with his brew, Gandhi said no to both with a smile. He said he’d like to flavour his tea with salt, “ to remind us of the famous Boston tea party.”
GANDHI’S TEA WITH SALT RECIPE
Lemon juice (48 oz)
2 teaspoons of ginger paste
Mix ginger paste with lemon juice
Add 1 half teaspoon of salt into mixture and shake well
Add 2 to 3 tablespoon of mixture into mug of hot tea
Add honey to taste
QUINTEASSENTIAL’S TEA WITH SALT RECIPE
350ml/12 oz water
100ml/3½ oz milk
4 black peppercorns
10 green cardamom pods, lightly crushed
Good pinch green fennel seeds
Small piece cinnamon stick
2 tsp Signature Breakfast black tea
1 tsp fresh ginger, peeled and roughly sliced
1 tsp chopped lemongrass
Salt, to taste
1) Heat water and milk with the spices and ginger until it comes to a boil. Lower heat and cook over a low to medium heat for 15 minutes. Be careful as the milk can boil over.
2) Once the volume is reduced to a large cupful, add the Signature Breakfast black tea and let it brew for one minute. Longer if you like strong tea. Strain into a cup and add salt to taste.
It gives a rich, caramelised and smooth mouthfeel. However it becomes spicy from the peppercorn as it reached the backs of the throat.
Cheers! Here’s to peace, health and prosperity to all.