A tweet from WebMD’s account featuring a “chai latte” recipe is being good-naturedly roasted by the South Asian diaspora, for whom tea is the holy grail of beverages.
The video caught the attention of Desi Twitter — the space in which young South Asians share memes, TikToks and relatable experiences — because of its unusual ingredients. The tweeted recipe included unsweetened coconut milk, maple syrup, star anise and lots of cinnamon.
It also stirred an online conversation about what constitutes an authentic recipe for spiced tea, or masala chai. The beverage is usually made with hot milk, loose tea leaves and spices like ginger, cardamom and cloves.
It’s not unusual for vegans and those who are lactose intolerant to use nondairy alternatives. Similarly, those who don’t want to use refined sugar may opt for a replacement.
However, the tweet, which has been deleted, didn’t give clarity or context about that. Instead, the recipe was called a way to avoid coffee shop prices, and it became the subject of comedic scrutiny.
WebMD acknowledged the response, tweeting that their recent recipe “really missed the mark.”
Here are some of the reactions to their viral video.
People were quick to point out the light color of the tea, which is a sign that it lacks the usually strong flavor.
Mostly, lots of people joked that the excessive use of spices could turn the latte into other South Asian dishes.
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