Matcha Powder

Matcha powder has become quite popular over the last few years, but how well do you know this potent tea? There’s a lot of confusion about what it is and what its health benefits are, so we’re here to set the record straight. Read on to learn everything there is to know about matcha powder in our detailed guide.

What is matcha?

Matcha is a powder made from ground green tea leaves. Most popular in Japan it is commonly used to make matcha tea or in baking. In addition, it contains less caffeine than coffee or black tea and contains the amino acid L-theanine, which can promote feelings of relaxation without drowsiness.

The History Behind Matcha 

The history of matcha powder dates back to the Tang Dynasty in China (618-907 AD) when it was first used as a ceremonial tea in Buddhist monasteries. In the 12th century, Japanese Buddhist monk Eisai brought matcha back from China and began planting tea bushes in Japan. The popularity of matcha quickly spread and by the 16th century, it was being used in the Japanese Tea Ceremony. Today, matcha powder is enjoyed all over the world for its unique flavour and health benefits. 

How Does Matcha Taste?

Matcha powder has a unique taste that is both grassy and sweet. When you first try it, you may be surprised by how strong the flavour is. It has similar a flavour profile to green tea with a slightly bitter edge. Matcha powder is also very versatile, so you can adjust the sweetness by adding more or less sugar depending on your preference - we recommend trying out different ratios until you find what works best for you.

The Production of Matcha Powder

The leaves are shade-grown, which increases the chlorophyll content and makes the leaves a brighter green colour. Then the leaves are harvested from the Camelia sinensis plant, dried in the sun and then sent off to a stone mill. At the stone mill, the leaves are ground into a fine powder, which is then sifted to remove any larger pieces.

There are three different grades of matcha powder, ceremonial grade, premium grade and culinary grade. 

Lalani & Co Organic Single Origin Ceremonial Matcha, 30g

Ceremonial grade is of the highest quality and is meant for traditional tea ceremonies. It has a very fine texture and a bright green colour.

Premium Matcha Green Tea Powder, 100g

Premium grade is good for drinking on its own or for use in baking and cooking. It has a slightly coarser texture than ceremonial grade and a more muted green colour.

Organic Culinary Matcha Green Tea Powder, 100g

Culinary grade is the least expensive and is meant for cooking. It has a coarse texture and a dark green colour.

How to Use Matcha Powder

There are many ways to enjoy matcha, the most traditional being drinking it in a tea also known as usucha matcha.

How to make usucha matcha in three simple steps:

  1. Measure 2 scoops of matcha powder into a matcha bowl using a matcha spoon, chashaku
  2. Pour over 70ml of hot water and whisk back and forth in a W-shaped motion until the tea becomes frothy
  3. Drink straight away from the matcha bowl

If using milk instead of water, be sure to warm it gently first so that it does not curdle. If you don't like the taste of powdered matcha, start with a less concentrated form or smaller amounts of powder.

Is matcha better with water or milk?

If you like your drink extra sweet, then go with milk. Milk will mask the bitterness that some find unpleasant in matcha. The sweeter flavour may also be more appealing if you're not used to drinking green tea in general. On the other hand, people who typically drink green tea might find this too sweet. So if you want a more bitter drink, or if you want to avoid dairy, opt for matcha with water.

Is matcha better hot or cold?

Matcha can be enjoyed both hot and cold, but some heat is needed to properly dissolve the matcha powder in the water. So it is recommended to make your matcha tea using hot water before cooling it down. Once cooled it can be less intense in flavour, smoother and refreshing on a cold day.

Exciting Recipes using Matcha Powder

Matcha Crepe Cake

Japanese Matcha Tea Crepe Cake Recipe

A cult classic that has become famous in the last couple of years. Nicknamed the matcha mille cake for the number of layers, this cake is made up of multiple matcha tea crepes with matcha cream between each layer.

Matcha Ice Cream

Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream Recipe

The earthy, bitter tones of the matcha pair really well with the sweet custard in ice cream. It's become a favourite in Korean street food markets and is particularly refreshing in the summer due to it's notes of fresh cut grass.

Matcha Roll Cake

Edd Kimber's Matcha Roll Cake

A fun twist on the British Swiss roll, this matcha roll is filled with matcha cream and a little white chocolate for the perfect balance of sweetness and earthy flavours.

Ready to try matcha powder for yourself? Have a look at our Matcha Tea range.


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