- Uji, the city of Matcha in Japan
- The benefits of matcha
- How to prepare matcha tea?
- Matcha in Japanese desserts
- Matcha in Japanese dishes and drinks
Matcha (抹茶、粉茶 ), a finely ground high-quality green tea powder, has been consumed in Japan for centuries. It is often used in Japanese cuisine to flavor desserts such as mochi, cakes, cookies, ice cream, wagashi (Japanese pastries), chocolates or even candies.
Matcha is also used in the Japanese tea ceremony, and is considered a very prestigious drink in Japan.
Uji, the city of Matcha in Japan
Matcha is mainly cultivated in Japan, in the city of Uji near Kyoto. A small tea paradise that we recommend you to visit!
The REAL matcha draws its authenticity from its production method. Indeed, the tea plants are shaded, about 3 weeks before picking, and then harvested once a year. This harvest is called the “first harvest”, and it is from here that you will find the best matcha.
The leaves are selected and harvested by hand and dried to obtain the “tencha“. It is this tencha that will be ground by hand by a grinder, during 1 hour for 40g of authentic matcha!
This authentic matcha will have a powerful taste, smooth and without bitterness.
Beware, the name “matcha” is not protected and is often abused in the trade. It is important to pay attention to the criteria we have described above. Always choose the first harvest. Indeed, you will find second and third harvests where the matcha will not be as qualitative.
The benefits of matcha
Matcha tea powder has many health benefits, including stress reduction and increased energy.
Matcha is incredibly rich in nutrients, antioxidants and polyphenols, a natural substance that can significantly reduce your chances of developing cancer.
How to prepare matcha tea?
In the traditional Japanese tea ceremony, matcha is served in a special bowl called 茶碗 chawan. The matcha tea ceremony follows a strict set of rules, with every element carefully considered and rigorously carried out. This tea ceremony is synonymous with purity, simplicity and tranquility.
The matcha is incorporated through a wooden spoon called 茶杓 “chashaku” and is mixed in the bowl “chawan” through a bamboo whisk named 茶筅 “chasen” with hot water and that’s it.
Here is how to prepare a cup of matcha tea
Unlike other teas, matcha is not brewed but whipped.
- Start by preparing the tea bowl and utensils, then add the matcha powder, 1 gram of matcha powder per 80 ml of water heated to 75°C.
- Use a bamboo whisk in a W shape to obtain a fine foam on the surface. It is necessary to count between 30 seconds and 1 minute. Enjoy immediately!
Matcha in Japanese desserts
Here are the most popular ones but matcha is also found in many Japanese desserts, chocolates and candies and even in coffee shops like Starbucks. This list is not exhaustive but shows the omnipresence of this exceptional tea in Japanese gastronomy.
Matcha in Japanese dishes and drinks
Matcha is now appreciated by star chefs and tea lovers around the world. We invite you to try our matcha recipes, such as matcha green tea tiramisu, matcha white chocolate cake, matcha green tea and black sesame macaroon, matcha ichigo daifuku or Japanese matcha strawberry recipe.