How to Make Matcha Tea - Rivertea Blog
Monica Munteanu | On 27, Jun 2013
If you were to find yourself in the middle of a Japanese tea ceremony, you’ll have the pleasant surprise of seeing first hand how match tea is prepared and served. There’s nothing like experiencing an authentic custom, especially when it comes to this favored beverage.
Matcha is a a high quality green powdered tea grown in the Uji area, southweat of Kyoto, Japan. It is made from early May hand picked leaves that are stone grounded into a fine powder. There are two types of matcha: koicha / thick tea, made from the new, younger leaves from the older tea plants, and usucha / thin tea that comes from the new leaves of the younger plants.
Making matcha tea is a complex, but enjoyable ritual and there are countable differences between preparing the thick tea and thin tea. We are going to take you through all the steps and show you everything you need to know for preparing koicha and usucha to make your experience as genuine as possible.
The basic preparation method
1. The tea should be stored in an air tight container and kept in a cool, dark place, otherwise it will spoil.
2. The matcha tea should be at room temperature. Sift it through a fine strainer before begining, in order to remove any clumps when adding the water later on.
3. You will require a bamboo whisk and a traditional, ceramic matcha bowl. You can preheat the bowl by filling a third of it with hot water. Once it has gotten warm, empty it and dry it out with a cloth.
4. Use a bamboo scoop and add about 2 scoops in the bowl. You can adjust the quantity to your taste.
5. Heat up the water until it reaches about 175°F (80° C) and pour it into the bowl to cover up about 1/3 or 1/4 of it.
6. Hold the bowl with one hand and with the other blend the composition for a couple of minutes using a bamboo whisk. Hold the whisk vertically and rotate it at a 360 degree level, without it touching the bottom of the bowl.
7. The result should be thick and smooth.
8. The tea should be drunk as such with no added ingredients and you may serve desert treats before drinking in order to sweeten the taste.
Now that you have the basic principles of making match tea, see the differences in preparation of thick tea and thin tea.
The first thing you need to know about making thick tea is that it requires less water and more powder, which are blended into a creamy mixture, similar to soup. The tea is usually kept in a Chaire, a chinese ceramic medicine bottle, with an ivory lid.
Add about 3 or 4 scoops to 40 ml of water, boiled at a temperature of 158°F- 176°F (70° C – 80° C). You can add a bit of cold water into the kettle before pouring to pre-cool it. The temperature for koicha should be a slight less hot then for usucha.
Use a thick, pronger, bamboo whisk and knead in a rotating fashion until it turns into a thick, dark cream. Serve with moist sweets.
This one should turn into a light mixture, using less tea and more water. It is held in a Natsume, a lacquered wood tea caddy.
Chime two scoops into 70 ml of hot water, the same temperature as in Koicha, without cooling it down. Use a thin pronged whisk and blend rapidly in a W shape. The result should be a foamy drink, to serve along side dry sweets, usually more than one variety.
3 health benefits of matcha
1. A source of energy
A cup of matcha a day will pump you up from dust til’ dawn. What’s great about it is that it doesn’t have any caffeine, but it’s the natural properties that keep you in high speed. A recent study showed that it increases physical endurance by 24%, so if you’re facing a marathon of chores or paperwork, this green powder is the way to go.
2. The sure way to calmness
For hundreds of years, matcha has aided in the meditation practice. That is because it is rich in L-Theanine, a rare amino acid that acts upon brain functioning and gives you a state of relaxed alterness. Drink matcha to have a clear mind and better concentration.
3. The enemy of calories
If you’re going through a diet, make sure you have a batch of Matcha with you the whole time. It aids in burning fat and boosting your metabolism and it’s surely a healthy alternative to anything you can find at the pharmacy for the same effect.
Now that you have all the information about this miraculous tea blend, grab a bowl and a whisk and make yourself a nice, hot cup of green matcha. It will put a smile on your face.
We’ll soon launch our new incredibly tasty tea blends. Join us, there are lots of special gifts waiting for you.