How to drink matcha
The fine matcha powder is worked in to a frothy paste using a delicate bamboo whisk called a chasen. Then, as more water is added, the chasen is used to incorporate the paste in to the water, resulting in a light a frothy green tea that should be consumed immediately.
Matcha is at the heart of Japanese culture, and the way it is prepared and presented has remained unchanged for hundreds of years.
In Japan, the traditional matcha tea ceremony is known as Canoyu, and the large bowl used to prepare the tea is called a ‘chawan’.
See our ‘How to prepare matcha tea’ video
Is matcha effective for weight loss?
Consuming matcha is thought to increase the body’s thermogenesis (the rate it burns calories). A compound in matcha called EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate) has been shown in various experiments and trials to boost metabolism and stop the growth of fat cells. (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition)
Green tea extract is already used in many slimming supplements for this reason, and matcha Is probably the purest and most natural form of green tea extract you could find.
Which are the different grades of matcha tea?
Different grades of matcha are determined by a number of factors including colour and texture but they ultimately boil down to the overall taste of your tea.
Higher quality grades of matcha green tea have a much smoother taste and feel much better in the mouth and on the palate, whereas the lower grade matcha teas can tend to be coarse and gritty in the mouth.
Ceremonial grade matcha is the highest quality tea available. It’s vibrant in colour, with a delicate taste and an extremely fine texture. Made from the youngest tea leaves, which are stone ground creating a wonderful powder for thick, vibrant green tea.
Culinary grade matcha is often used for cooking and baking. It still produces a very high quality tea and is fine to drink, but has a very different flavour profile than ceremonial grade tea.
This can be further broken down in to 5 subtypes; premium, cafe, ingredient, kitchen and classic. These subtypes vary in use, from everyday drinking tea, to more economic powders used for smoothies and ice creams.
What are the benefits of Japanese Matcha Green Tea Powder over other types of matcha?
True matcha tea is produced and prepared in a very unique way. These processes are now unique to Japan. Matcha tea from elsewhere is unlikely to have been painstakingly grown under shade, handpicked and finely ground by stone the way it is done in Japan.
The health benefits of true matcha tea are unbounding. Including weight loss, increased focus and concentration, and the highest level of antioxidants you can find.
How long does matcha stay fresh for?
Matcha is a very delicate product it doesn’t like air, heat or light. Once ground, the shelf life of unopened matcha tea is about a year.
An opened packet should be used within 68 weeks, 12 weeks at a push. There really is no reason to save it for a special occasion. Enjoy matcha while it is fresh and vibrant, and enjoy all the health benefits that go along with it.
How much matcha can I have per day?
The majority of people tend to drink 1 or 2 servings of matcha per day. This is the equivalent to around 1020 servings of regular green tea.
More than 5 servings of matcha tea is unnecessary. The amount of caffeine you consume will be over 200mg which is over the recommended daily limit.
1 cup in the morning, and one early afternoon should keep you alert and give you all the health benefits.
What is the difference between matcha and green tea?
With matcha tea, you’re consuming the whole leaf, including all the fibre and nutrients that are packed in to the leaves. When you drink regular green tea, you’re throwing rather a lot of the extra goodness away with the bag.
The young, vibrant green tea leaves that go in to matcha are carefully grown under shade, hand picked at a specific time of year and stone ground in to a very fine powder.
There are more health benefits associated with matcha tea, and its antioxidant levels are through the roof.
Are there any other ways to enjoy matcha besides as a tea/drink?
Many people combine their matcha powder with milk to create a ‘matcha latte’, and others like to use it in baking, cooking and smoothies.
However, combining matcha with milk does decrease the effectiveness for a number of its health benefits. So while you might like to experiment with the flavour in your cooking, remember the best way to enjoy matcha is as a lovely cup of vibrant green tea.
Can I drink matcha while I’m pregnant?
Matcha tea still contains caffeine, and it’s recommended that you avoid any stimulating beverage during your first trimester of pregnancy. So, while the caffeine found in matcha is different to the caffeine found in coffee, it would still be a good idea to limit your consumption while pregnant.
Before trying anything new while you’re pregnant, it’s always best to speak to your health care professional.
How much EGCg is in a single serving of matcha tea?
Per 1g of matcha, there are approximately 61mg of the catechin EGCg which has potent cancerfighting properties.(National Center for Biotechnology Information)
Which matcha utensils are best?
In the traditional matcha ceremony (Canoyu), a large bowl (chawan) and a delicate bamboo whisk (chasen) are the traditional utensils used to prepare the tea and create the light froth that is characteristic to matcha.
Many modern coffee and tea shops use an electric whisk to create the same effect, but at Kanuka we like to keep things traditional.
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