Have you just recently had matcha at a café and now you would like to buy some matcha tea powder for yourself to prepare matcha tea at home but don’t know where to start? Then you are in a perfect place! In this article we will review four different ways to make matcha tea.
Matcha is a delicious green beverage coming from powdered tea leaves. Although it originates from China it became an important drink and a key cultural element in Japan as it spread through Buddhism.
As the legend has it matcha was firstly introduced from China to Japan around 12th century by a Buddhist monk. Initially this drink was only available to members of royalty and samurai warriors, who drank it as a part of a ritual during chanoyu ceremony.
Matcha served in this traditional way involves a special ceremonial bowl (chanwan), bamboo whisk (chasen) and a scoop (chashaku). Most importantly, however, it is a full choreographic ritual which is about much more than tea. It is also about aesthetics but above all the consideration and hospitality the host of the ceremony gives to their guests.
There are many different rules of etiquette one has to follow while participating in such a ceremony. For example, you need to rotate the bowl while drinking so that you do not touch the most beautiful part of the bowl with your mouth.
Matcha usucha (薄茶) and matcha koicha (濃茶)
Luckily, although participating in a traditional matcha tea ceremony is definitely a very rewarding experience it is not something you have to go through anytime you want to enjoy a cup of delicious matcha.
There are two quick ways to prepare your matcha on a busy day. First of them is to prepare the so called matcha usucha, which flavour is slightly less intense than that of matcha koicha.
To make matcha usucha all you need is matcha tea powder, a bowl (or a big mug) and a whisk. Simply add 1 ½ teaspoons of matcha powder into the bowl and mix it with 60 millilitres (2 ounces) of hot water of around 80 degrees Celsius. Then mix matcha powder with water using a bamboo whisk until you get a drink of a clear consistency without any clumps. Move the whisk as if you were trying to write either ‘M’ or ‘W’ for about three minutes.
Preparing matcha koicha is a very similar process. The only difference is that you need to add 3 teaspoons of matcha powder (instead of 1½) per 60 millilitres of hot water. As koicha’s flavour is much stronger than that of usucha it is probably best to try it once you are already comfortable with the way usucha tastes.
If you feel like you want to experiment with your matcha and are especially fond of milk beverages matcha latte will probably be ideal for you.
The easiest way to prepare matcha latte, which does not necessitate any appliances is simply to prepare matcha the same way you would prepare koicha (look at the section above) while simultaneously heating milk in a saucepan. All you need to do is to pour your matcha mixture into the same cup as the warm milk and enjoy your drink!
You can also make matcha latte using a milk frother. Once it is already heating your chosen milk and spinning simply add some matcha powder and optionally a sweetener into the mixture. Once it achieves the desired temperature simply pour it into a glass, a bowl or a mug and enjoy the taste.
Iced Matcha Latte
Remember that if it is a hot day and you are looking for something refreshing to drink, preparing iced matcha latte is always an option. The only difference between preparing matcha latte and iced matcha latte is that to get the latter you need to wait for the beverage to cool down and then add some ice into it. Trust us, there are not many better things that can happen to you on a hot day than a glass filled with iced matcha latte.