There are some things from home that I just can’t get enough of and miss like crazy… Being from Oregon, I can think of a few things. Good coffee, smoked salmon, good beer!!!, jerky, Tillamook cheese, Pendleton whiskey, Oregon Ducks Football, and Oregon Chai. Lucky for me, I can get a few of these things here at various import stores or if I’m nice to someone who can go on base and buy it for me. I’ve been here 2.5 years and still haven’t been on any of the bases. I would love to peruse the grocery store, just for nostalgia’s sake. Ahhh, America.
Well, nobody can find me a bottle of Pendleton, but I can watch the Ducks stomp just about anybody at Traveler’s if I can rally the Oregonians in Bundang to vote for them. There are lots of us! Costco has decent enough salmon, jerky, and Tillamook cheese (Pepper jack for the win mother fathers!!), and more and more, I’m seeing Rogue brews popping up in nearby stores like Homeplus. It’s amazing!
But alas, no Oregon Chai. Anywhere.
Mom’s mantra. “If you want something done right…”
This translates to “If you really want it that badly…”
Okay Mom, I get it! I’ll make it myself! Geez! Get out of my head!
All the ingredients are available in Korea (at foreign food marts/I Love Cookie), or are on iherb, where you can ship fast and cheap to the ROK. (May all the old gods and the new bless that website.) I’ll provide all the links to the stuff I used. I’ve become lactose intolerant since moving to Korea, so I used some soy substitutes. (Still creamy and amazing with soy!)
Oregon Chai Latte mix
1 cup soy milk powder (iherb)
1 cup vanilla “Better than Milk” (iherb)
1 cup non-dairy coffee creamer (Any grocery store, next to the coffee crack packets)
1 packet Jell-o vanilla pudding mix (I Love Cookie has it!)
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups Nestea instant unsweetened iced tea (iherb)
2 tsp ginger powder (in Korean: 생강)
2 tsp cinnamon (EVERYWHERE)
1 tsp ground cloves (I have only found whole, and that kills non-glass blenders. iherb.)
1 tsp cardamom (no luck finding this, so iherb!)
1 tsp nutmeg (Foreign food markets)
1 tsp allspice (foreign food market. Not sure about Cookie. iherb link for the lazy/busy)
1/4 tsp white pepper (optional)
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Then, turn that course, beautiful mixture into something a bit more industrial, more instant. Cup by cup, blend the mix in a blender until everything is finely ground. NOTE: please make sure your blender is bone dry, otherwise things get gummy. Store in an airtight container. Any humidity will turn this mix to stone… and we know how humid it gets here!
Mix 2 big tablespoonish scoops with 8 ounces of hot water or milky drink of your choice. Bonus points if you mix it with coffee for a DIRTY CHAI!
For real. I went camping over Chuseok and one of the highlights was a dirty chai while the sun was coming up over the trees. We were down in a canyon with a river, and there was fog. Felt like all sorts of home.