I am always interested in trying new foods, and matcha was one that I have always wanted to try, but never really got around to buying it. What would I do with it besides make tea?
Let me tell you that you can use matcha in both drinks and dishes, and the possibilities are endless!
Image credit: Flickr
What is Matcha?
Matcha is made from green tea (Camellia sinensis) leaves that have been grown in the shade and crushed to powder, to give a beautiful deep green colour.
Green tea contains caffeine and antioxidants called polyphenols and catechin flavanols. The most powerful antioxidant that green tea is known for is the catechin flavanol called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Because you are consuming the whole tea leave in matcha instead of just steeped green tea, you are getting more antioxidants per serving, which may help in reducing your risk of developing chronic disease.
According to the Dietitians of Canada, there is fair evidence that green tea lowers total and LDL cholesterol in individuals with dyslipidemia (high LDL or total cholesterol or low HDL cholesterol, and is a risk factor for coronary heart disease).
For more information on the nutritional benefits of tea, check out the Tea Association of Canada.
How do you use it?
I received a bag of Organic Matcha from Kiss Me Organics and even though I am in love with anything infused with tea, I’ll admit that I was a little hesitant to dive right in. The majority of recipes out there for Matcha are of green desserts and green tea lattes, which didn’t really strike a chord with me.
Green tea in a latte?
I only drink green tea plain. No milk, no sugar. Nature’s delicious drink.
But, I’m willing to try anything once. I would just need to ease myself into it.
You probably have a friend like me. I’m the one who slowly wades into the cold water and gets freaked out by seaweed and splashes along the way, while everyone else just dives right in. So, I guess I’m like that with trying new foods as well.
I started with a Matcha iced tea.
In a glass, add ½ tsp Matcha powder per cup of water. Add ice and lemon slices, stir and enjoy!
No boiling water, steeping the tea and cooling it here! This is one thing that I love about Matcha, unlike it’s leafy cousins, it’s super simple to use, and you can throw it in anything without a moment’s notice.
This is now our go-to drink for summer road trips, instead of stopping in at a coffee shop along the way.
After I was totally satisfied with making iced tea, I ventured out and added some Matcha to a summer inspired salad.
Matcha Infused Summer Grain Salad
½ cup pearl barley, uncooked
1 tbsp canola oil
1 large Pattypan squash, diced
½ cup cucumber, diced
1 cup tomatoes, diced
¼ parsley, chopped
¼ cup green onions, sliced thinly
¼ cup feta cheese, crumbled
½ large lemon, juiced
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
½ tsp Matcha Green Tea Powder
Salt and pepper to taste
1. In a small pot, add barley and 1 ¼ cup water and bring to a boil. Turn down heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
2. In a frying pan on medium heat, heat up canola oil and add squash. Sautee to brown all sides of squash. Place in large serving bowl.
3. Add cucumber, tomatoes, parsley, green onions and feta cheese.
4. Once barley is cooked, add barley.
5. Mix dressing ingredients together and toss with salad.
Delicious! I didn’t tell Paulo matcha was in it, but he could tell there was something different about it. The matcha brings out accentuates the herbaceous notes of this salad, and pairs really well with the lemon. Try this dressing on your favourite salad!
These are the Pattypan squash I got from the farmers market over the weekend. Three giants for $1, and they were calling my name.
Finally, I got up the courage to try a Matcha latte, following the recipe I received with my matcha.
It’s surprisingly tasty! I was so used to having lemon with my green tea so I wasn’t completely sold on combining dairy with green tea, but I have to say that now I know what all the hype is about because it’s absolutely delicious!
Do you love Matcha as much as I do? How do you use it in your cooking? Leave a comment below to share your thoughts and recipe ideas!
If you would like to purchase Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder, visit the Kiss Me Organics online store.