Mumbai’s cutting chai
Mumbai is a city of dreams and for all the Mumbaikars a cutting chai and vada pao is the perfect companion to take you through life. Lets, decode the cult phrase ‘Cutting Chai’ for you. Cutting refers to half a glass. “Boss, ek cutting dena!” is a part of the common daily usage. Tapri refers to the local tea stall that serves cutting chai. None can beat the experience of having chai at a tapri, just casually standing and chit chatting with friends with hot vada pao, bread pakora or samosa. If it rains, its just cherry on the cake!
The tea is brewed with tea leaves, ginger, cardamom or any other flavoring ingredient along with milk. It is boiled for a longer period of time, a minute or two extra to make it kadak (strong) and also infuse all the flavors.
The cutting chai is generally served in special small sized glasses. People usually have at least 2-3 cups of tea in a day. Therefore, the concept of cutting chai came up; it was drinking a half cup so that you could drink many cups in a day and yet moderate the amount that you are drinking. Considering its small quantity, cutting chai must be flavorful & aromatic. It should have the perfect balance of spices, aroma and strength to make a person fall in love with it in just one sip.
You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy tea. And that’s kind of the same thing!