“This spiced-chai is made out of using the poaching liquid for the spiced-stewed apples I serve on Sunday breakfast. It’s a very warming drink, perfect for the winter season. Doing it this way we don’t waste any of the liquid goodness by throwing the liquid out after poaching the apples. I use fresh orange juice and the orange rind as part of the poaching liquid too. It’s a great way to showcase the abundance of oranges during this season.” Annah – Billabong Retreat Chef

Spiced-Chai for 3 Litres (water out of poaching liquid).

4 cinnamon sticks
5 star anise
1 tbsp of cloves
Rind of 2 oranges
Juice of 2 oranges
Fresh ginger slices – about a thumb size
Fresh lemon grass if available
8 chai tea bags
4 apples

Poach apples as per usual using the following spices into a pot with 3 litres of water: 4 cinnamon sticks, 5 star anise, 1 tbsp of cloves, rind of 2 fresh oranges, juice of 2 fresh oranges, 2 tbsp of honey.
Poach apple slices for about 20-30 minutes until soft and tender but not mushy (for a family of 4, 1 apple per person).
Drain off apples and place in a separate bowl (This can be served with yoghurt and granola). Leave poaching liquid in the pot and continue in slow simmer.
Add the following items: fresh ginger slices about a thumb size, fresh lemon grass, (roots pounded and tied to a knot) –if available and 8 chai tea bags.
Let chai tea steep for about 5-10 minutes to your desired taste and strength of tea.
Take off tea bags and strain liquid into a glass pitcher.
Serve straight away. Option to add more honey to taste