How to Prepare Matcha Tea: Utensils, Recipes and Tricks
We must confess that – like many people – we used to be skeptical when we were told about matcha tea and its goodness; we had the feeling that it was a bitter and unpalatable drink. Still, it piqued our curiosity, as we kept seeing people asking for it when they went to coffee shops. Why do they prefer it over traditional coffee or cappuccinos?
The best way to find out was to allow us to try it. That’s why we decided to order it…And once we did, we soon realized that there was no turning back. To this day, it’s one of our favorite beverages…so much so that we enjoy it at cafes and restaurants and make it at home. And since we know many want to learn how to make it, today we want to share the ingredients, utensils, and methods that we use.
First time trying matcha tea? Here’s what you need to know
Before we share the recipes with you, we think it’s important to tell you what to expect during your first matcha tea experience. When you taste the first sips, the slightly bitter vegetal flavor may not give you the best sensation; however, later on, you may perceive some sweet notes that are very pleasant.
The best part comes when you discover that you can vary its flavor, aroma, and texture by adding it to milk, vegetable drinks, juices, and smoothies, among other things. We think it’s at this point when many people come to prefer it over other infusions and coffee. It’s simply delicious!
Now, since matcha tea is one of the most popular and in-demand beverages these days, you’ll be able to find many options on the market. This is also a determinant of the flavor you get when you make it at home. We recommend that you purchase a good brand, which guarantees that it is organic and natural.
If possible, choose one with a “premium grade” label that also ensures its quality. These varieties don’t contain colorants, preservatives, or any other additives. Their flavor notes are lighter and they have a very characteristic dark green color.
WE emphasize these details because at first, we had a hard time finding a presentation that gave me a similar taste to the matcha we consumed in coffee shops. In fact, the first option we chose for making at home had a strong smell and tasted like seaweed. It was not at all what we had expected!
Of course, it’s a matter of trying options until you find the one that offers you the best flavor, aroma, and texture. In our case, we were fascinated with the matcha from Naturale Bio. It’s quite light, its aroma is sweet and vegetal, and when drunk, it leaves an herbal taste, but with a sweet touch at the end.
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How to prepare matcha tea at home
One of the things you should consider when you want to prepare matcha tea at home is that it is not prepared as an infusion. Unlike traditional green tea, this beverage is whipped and frothed. Therefore, the commercial presentation is a fine powder – which is obtained from the tenderest leaves of the Camellia sinensisplant – and with which various recipes can be prepared.
- Good quality matcha tea (preferably a “premium grade” one)
- Water with weak mineralization
- Milk (whole or skimmed) or vegetable drink (rice, oat, coconut, etc.)
- Kettle: This is not an indispensable item, but is useful if you want to heat water quickly.
- Chawan: This is the bowl-shaped cup traditionally used to make this tea.
- Chasaku: This is the name given to the bamboo spoon used to take the necessary amount of matcha tea.
- Chasen: This is a piece of bamboo used to dissolve the matcha tea powder. It’s used to remove the foam from the beverage.
Preparation of traditional hot matcha tea
Hot matcha tea is one of the traditional ways to enjoy matcha tea. It’s usually accompanied by a small sweet that’s consumed before drinking the beverage. However, this is optional. We usually consume it unaccompanied.
- 1 or 2 measuring spoons (chasaku) of matcha tea
- 1 small cup of water (150 milliliters)
To begin, wash the chawan or bowl well with hot water. Make sure it’s very clean. While you do this, heat the water without letting it boil (it should not exceed 80º Celsius).
Then, pour the suggested amount of matcha tea into the Chawan, it can be one or two measuring spoons (Chasaku), depending on the intensity of flavor you want to obtain (we usually just use one).
Then, pour the hot water over the tea and then dilute with the help of the Chasen.
In this step, be sure to whisk constantly with a W or M motion, not a circular motion. After about 30 seconds, you will begin to notice foam in the drink.
Once you’re finished preparing it, consume it as soon as possible. Keep in mind that the powder moves to the bottom, so it’s not advisable to wait too long. You may also need to whisk it again a few times as you enjoy it to improve the flavor.
We think you may be interested in reading this, too: 10 Benefits of Black Tea According to Scientific Evidence
How to make cold matcha tea
The cold version of matcha tea is often a favorite on hot days. Many people like it because it’s refreshing and it makes them feel like it gives them a boost of energy.
- 2 to 3 measuring spoons (chasaku) of matcha tea
- 1 cup water (200 milliliters)
- 3 large ice cubes
- As above, start by washing the chawan well with hot water.
- Now, pour in the matcha tea and mix it first with 25 milliliters of water. When it’s diluted, add the rest of the cold water and stir everything with the help of the Chasen.
- Add the ice cubes and continue stirring.
- If you want it to be colder, you can put it in the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes. After this time, shake again and drink.
Matcha latte preparation
One of many people’s favorite ways to prepare matcha tea is in its latte version. The key here is to get a good balance between the amount of tea and the chosen milk (it can be cow’s milk or vegetable). This will determine both the final flavor and a creamy, light texture.
- 1 or 2 measuring spoons (chasaku) of matcha tea
- 2 tablespoons of water (30 milliliters)
- 1 small cup of milk (150 milliliters)
- After cleaning the chawan with hot water, mix the matcha tea with the tablespoons of water. Then add the hot milk (without boiling) and whisk with the Chasen until you get a frothy drink. You can decorate it with a little matcha tea powder.
- If you want a cold latte, follow the same procedure, but add a little more cold milk (175 milliliters). Pour in the ice cubes, shake vigorously, and enjoy!
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Tips for a delicious matcha tea
The most important advice we can give you if you are looking for a delicious cup of matcha tea is to invest in a high-quality product. Avoid being guided by the price and pay close attention its characteristics, properties, and the brand that’s behind it.
Although there are alternative ways to prepare the drink, it’s best to also get the tools specifically designed for its preparation. These are usually available in the same online or physical stores where the tea is distributed.
Avoid adding sugar, sweeteners, or other additives. As long as you perform the preparation steps properly, the drink does not have an intolerable bitterness. In fact, it leaves pleasant sweet notes on the palate. So, are you ready to make your own recipe?It might interest you...