Sometime last year a beautiful friend gave me a bag of Matcha. Not knowing anything about Matcha, I popped (too much) matcha powder into a tea cup, boiled the kettle, made the tea, and put the bag in the cupboard… Where it stayed.
But recently, one of the samples that arrived from Clean Tea was Matcha. At the same time I was feeling pretty revolting with Christmas festive season consuming, so probably anything green would have looked appetising, but the Matcha did look inviting!
So I googled. And I was amazed! And I got into Matcha. I love Matcha!
Matcha is made from the same leaves that make green tea. About six weeks before harvesting, the leaves are covered to protect them from sunlight, intensifying the colour of the leaves.
Once harvested, the leaves a stone ground into the beautiful green powder you buy.
The result is that one cup of Matcha has the same nutritional value as 10 cups of green tea!
And why? Well, the last few weeks of growing in the shade intensifies the nutritional quality. But also, you’re consuming the whole leaf. This is much more beneficial than brewing a cup of tea and then popping all the still good and nutritional tea leaves into your bin or compost.
Want to know more? Here’s a list of the good stuff about Matcha (from matchasource.com)…
•Is packed with antioxidants including the powerful EGCg
•Boosts metabolism and burns calories
•Detoxifies effectively and naturally
•Calms the mind and relaxes the body
•Is rich in fiber, chlorophyll and vitamins
•Enhances mood and aids in concentration
•Provides vitamin C, selenium, chromium, zinc and magnesium
•Lowers cholesterol and blood sugar
Matcha tea was made popular in Japan, where most Matcha is grown, by Buddist Monks who drank the tea to remain calm but alert. On top of every other way Matcha supports your body, this is the one that really made me want to give it a try.
Matcha is renowned for its use in Japanese tea ceremonies. I read that to make Matcha tea at home you heat your water to 80 degrees and use a bamboo whisk to stir your Matcha until you get a frothy top.
I don’t have a bamboo whisk (yet), but a teaspoon of Matcha powder in not quite boiling water makes a lovely tea. I’ve found it to be a great coffee replacement, giving me a pick me up without the coffee jitters.
But here are some other ways to use Matcha…
• Add it straight to a smoothie or dissolve it in hot water first and then add it to a smoothie
• Stir a teaspoon through some Greek yoghurt to create a smoothie bowl, then top with whatever you like
• Stir it through your morning Chia pot. This is my favourite at the moment. Just pop your 2 Tablespoons of chia seeds in 1/2 cup of milk of your choice in the fridge the night before, then add a couple of spoonfuls of Greek yoghurt and a teaspoon of Matcha in the morning and stir through. Again, top with your breakfast favourites.
• Add Matcha to protein balls, slice etc. Google is your friend for recipes that contain Matcha.
So give Matcha a go (if you have a naturopathic consultation with me in February I’ll be sending you home with a sample to try). After all, something so high in antioxidants is something we could all benefit from!