Matcha tea is full of antioxidants that help prevent cancer, improve mental clarity and alertness, detoxify the body, stop the scavenging activities of free radicals and improve the immune system. It also contains catechin and polyphenols that promote relaxation and contributes to the treatment and prevention of various medical conditions, including fungal, bacterial, viral infections and type-2 diabetes. The tea helps maintain cardiovascular and gastrointestinal health too and works to boost energy levels.
So, nothing will match sipping some frothy matcha tea on a chilly morning. To make a frothy mug of matcha latte, you do not need to be a tea master. You just need the right tools and to whip a few ingredients together and enjoy the sweet drink. You will need matcha, milk, clean eating sweetener. Match tea producers grind a whole green leave to come up with the fine powder.
A quick introduction to matcha tea
Matcha tea is a type of Japanese green tea made with fine green powder and offering creamy frothy beverages. To make the powder, distributors grind up the whole leaf to come with something more potent and offering many health benefits. However, that does not mean that all forms of powdered tea are matcha green tea. People mostly confuse sencha tea with matcha tea but the difference lies in the production process.
The producers of matcha tea only use the best parts of leaves, while producers of sencha use every part including the veins and stems. They use granite stone grinders to grind the matcha tea but producers of sencha tea use large machines, which bring about coarse powders that give yellow-brown hues after brewing. Matcha producers provide various grades of the tea including food grade products that people use for culinary purposes and premium matcha, widely known as ceremonial grade matcha tea. To prepare frothy matcha tea, you will need high-quality matcha.
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Matcha tea provides a vibrant green hue in addition to a vegetal sweet taste. It contains naturally occurring caffeine that is released slowly to the body for a smooth effect. The high levels of amino acids and chlorophyll provide a vegetal taste to the tea any other compound will provide a sweet aftertaste.
The secret to achieving frothy matcha tea
Some people will prefer matcha tea with less froth or without any. So, we have to assume that frothiness is about aesthetics. The froth that comes up after you have whisked the tea vigorously is a result of some compounds in the powdered tea. Some teas might contain this powder in large quantities but others will have only a little. Those with a large amount will become frothier than the others will. Here are tips to help you get a higher amount of froth.
1. Get the right tools
To brew matcha tea, you will need a few tools, if you are planning to do it the Japanese way. You will require a wide-brimmed bowl, known as chawan. To enjoy the tea, you can also buy a tea bowl, a large café-au-lait mug, matcha teacup, or a soup bowl. If you want to prepare the tea in the traditional Japanese way, you will have to use the tools the Japanese use. You will require a bamboo whisk, also known as chasen. You can buy most of the tools from online stores.
2. Buy matcha tea of great quality
The most important tool in the preparation of frothy matcha tea is the tea powder. So, you have to start by purchasing high-quality matcha. The producers mostly sell it in delicate small tins but you can also get it in bagged form – just ensure that the used packaging is opaque and it is resealable to reduce the chances of flavour distortion from light and air. As you expect with ground coffee and powdered spices, matcha tea will lose its potency and flavour as it ages.
Look for matcha tea with an expiration date to be sure that it will provide you with the best flavour and freshness. You are likely to find low quality matcha tea powders that you can use to prepare smoothies and lattes but to enjoy the best taste, stick to the high-quality powders. For a long time, the highest quality matcha tea has been coming from Japan, so you have to know the origin. You can order ceremonial grade tea from the online stores to enjoy the best taste.
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3. Choose the right type of tea
In the United States, you will realize that matcha tea is labelled differently from that sold in Japan. In the US, you will realize that the high-quality tea is labelled as a ceremonial tea, while in Japan the producers label it as usucha. You can use tea from any of the two countries but remember to use the right amount. For every 80 grams of water, use 2 grams of tea. For accuracy reasons, you will need a good scale. If you hate measurements, you can use a ½ teaspoon of matcha tea for 1 cup of hot water.
4. Sift each time
Most people find it hard to make frothy or smooth matcha tea. The main reason behind that is that they rarely sift the powder before the start of the brewing process. Matcha tea is known to clump and remain clumpy including when it has dissolved in water. To get the creamy and frothy tea, you will have to sift the powder before you add it to the water. To do that, use your fine sifter or mesh strainer and press down on the tea powder with a traditional spatula, known as chashaku, or a spoon.
5. Use hot water
Whether your goal is to make a frothy iced latte or a hot mug of matcha tea, you have to use hot water – not boiling water. Unlike other types of teas and delicate herbs, the powdered tea is not temperature-sensitive, which means that you should not worry about the exact temperature when brewing.
You just need to boil some water and allow it to sit for around 45-60 seconds and pour it into your mug or cup. Before pouring the water into the cup or bowl, you must heat it by rinsing it with the hot water. Pat it dry before you add the matcha tea to prevent chances of getting a diluted beverage. Use spring or filtered water. For the best flavour, you have to avoid tap water.
6. Whisk in vigorously in a zigzag motion
To get a layer of foam on the top of your creamy matcha tea, you have to whisk it vigorously in a zigzag motion. After you have added the tea powder and water, you have to whisk immediately. Ensure that the bristles touch the bottom of your bowl or cup and whisk heartily. After your tea starts becoming frothy, raise the whisk to the top and whip the soft foam.
Matcha tea recipes
The commonest matcha tea recipes involve the traditional methods that Japanese have used for centuries. If you are planning to host a traditional matcha tea ceremony, here is the recipe to try. Keep in mind that most traditional recipes do not contain sweeteners. To maintain the integrity of green tea flavour, you have to avoid them too.
- Step 1: Using a strainer and a spoon or chasaku sift 1-2 teaspoons of your matcha tea powder into a bowl or cup.
- Step 2: Take the hot water and pour around 80 grams for every 2 grams of the tea powder.
- Step 3: Take the whisk and whisk the mixture vigorously in a zigzag motion until froth appears at the top.
- Step 4: Traditionally, people do not sweeten their matcha tea. However, you can add some almond milk, coconut milk to get a sweeter flavour.
Recipe for matcha tea latte
Most individuals new to the world of matcha tea find the earthy and grassy flavours overwhelming. If you are one of them, matcha lattes will introduce you to the unique taste of green leaves while still enjoying the sweet notes. Even more, lattes will allow you to cool on the hottest summer days because you can ice them. Here are the steps to follow.
- Step 1: Take 1 teaspoon of matcha tea and use the strainer and spoon to sift it into a bowl or cup. Remember to break up the clumps.
- Step 2: Add a tablespoon of hot water into the matcha powder and whisk vigorously in a zigzag motion until the blend turns frothy.
- Step 3: Take an espresso machine and steam some milk with the milk frother. If you do not have an espresso, use the stove to heat your milk until the temperature is between 165 degrees F and 180 degrees F. For the mixing part, use a hand frother.
- Step 4: Now, pour all the milk into the cup and use a spoon to hold back the foam. Spoon your frothy foam into the cup when it is nearly full and enjoy your tea latte.
Cleaning after matcha green tea session
The clean-up part should be easy and fast if you do it immediately and you will thank yourself for that when preparing the next mug of tea. To do the cleaning, pour some warm water into your chawan. To rinse the chasen, whisk inside it and store it on your whisk holder. After rinsing the chawan, dry it and use a dry cloth to wipe the chasaku. Store the matcha set in the right place.
The key to getting frothy matcha tea is proper whisking. You will need to whisk it vigorously and in a zigzag motion so that you can get the nice froth. But if you are doing that for the first time, do not expect to get a heavy froth. Like anything else in life, you will need the practice to get perfect results. Did you know why the market offers spacious matcha bowls? That is because they offer adequate room for the whisk to move around without spilling the tea. If you hate frothy beverages, there is no need for vigorous whisking.