To beat the chill of Delhi I was craving for some ginger tea. The very thought of the number of utensils that had to be washed after the tea gave me a cold feet. After staring at utensil shelf for fifteen minutes I decided to settle for Rong Cha (just the way it is served in Madhu da’s Canteen). Madhu da’s canteen is familiar to people from Dhaka University, Bangladesh. Lined with benches and tables it is the most vibrant place with students debating, singing and even sharing romantic glances. In my recent visit to University of Dhaka for a conference I decided to stay away from Conference Lunch and instead opted for the culinary delights of Madhu da’s canteen. And our favourite was Rong Cha.
Across Bangladesh, Black tea is referred as Rong Cha. Rong means Colour in Bengali. Cha is the Bengali word for Tea. Considering, milk served without tea retains the original colour, hence Rong Cha Usually the tea in Bangladesh (Dhaka and Barishal) use tea bags unlike their Indian Counterparts where tea is added to boiling water and left to rest till the last batch of tea is sold out. Even roadside tea stalls usually use small glasses or cups to serve Rong Cha.
So how do you make your cup of Ginger flavoured Rong Cha? Skip the act of adding ginger slices or crushed ginger to boiling water. Instead boil the water and store it in the flask. Chop some ginger. When you want to take a tea break, pour the water, add sugar followed by your favourite brand of tea bag. Take off the tea bag and finish it off with the ginger slices. So when you sip your tea, the finely chopped ginger slices help you to warm up to beat the winter chill and keep up with your deadlines.