In Tibet, like here, it is late summer, and my brothers have been busy on the high mountains herding yak and dri (the female yak). They move from place to place, and spend most of their time milking the dri and making butter and cheese. Every so often, they send bags of this stuff back home on horses, mules and yaks (see the video below, sent recently by relatives in Tibet). My brother told me this week that they have bagged up about 500kg of butter over the last four months.
Baby it's cold outside! Probably not the best time of year to visit Tibet, the so-called roof of the world. Or is it? Don't tell anyone, but winter is actually a great season to travel to Tibet. By December, the hordes of Chinese tourists have gone, hotel rooms have become more affordable, and the only people on the move are Tibetans, making their regular or once-in-a-lifetime pilgrimages to the capital Lhasa and other holy places. This makes winter a great time to visit just
In Tibet there are more yaks than there are people, and they are important companions who provide all the basic requirements for human life on the plateau. Yak milk is made into butter, the key ingredient in Tibetan butter tea, as well as yoghurt and cheese. Yak meat is high in protein, and low in cholesterol. Yak wool can be used to make tents, knitted as sweaters, or weaved as rugs. Even yak dung, when dried and hardened, provides a useful fuel for cooking and heating. Duri
Those who have been lucky enough to visit Tibet have lots of questions of our chai tea at the Taste Tibet stall. Tibetan tea gets a bad rep. Tibet is most famous (notorious?) for its butter tea. This is made with bitter, black tea, churned with yak butter and sometimes salt. It is consumed several times a day, every day, by most Tibetan people. Butter tea is said to have considerable warming properties, as well as a high calorie count, both useful qualities at high altitude.