How to Make Matcha
Matcha is a finely ground green tea powder from Japan, traditionally drunk in the Japanese tea ceremony since the 12th century. It is prepared by dissolving into hot water using a bamboo whisk to create a rich, brothy drink full of grassy, vegetal flavours.
The tealeaves used to make matcha are shaded from the sun for around three to four weeks prior to harvest to increase the amino acid content in the leaves. This gives the tea an incredible sweetness and a unique umami character. After steaming and drying, the leaves are ground down into a powder using a stone mill or a ball mill. Matcha is very rich in antioxidants, and has both an awakening and calming effect on the mind.
Preheat the matcha bowl (chawan) by filling it with hot water.
Place and leave the whisk (chasen) in the hot water to soften the bristles.
Pour 70ml of hot water into a cup and leave it to cool to 75°C.
Dry the matcha bowl with a clean cloth.
Sieve the matcha to remove lumps.
Measure two scoops of matcha into the bowl using the bamboo scoop (chashaku).
Pour the hot water over the matcha powder in a circular motion to ensure all the
matcha is incorporated.
Hold the bowl still with one hand, and hold the chasen with your thumb and two fingers.
Start by moving the chasen slowly through the water to loosen up the matcha from the
bottom of the bowl.
Increase the speed of the whisking to a fast pace, flicking your wrist back and forth in a ‘w’ motion until creamy and frothy.
You should see a pale green layer of foam on top of the matcha, with small evenly distributed bubbles.
Enjoy with Japanese wagashi sweets.
Matcha can be prepared with a small amount of water to make ‘koicha’, a thick paste-like liquor, or with extra water for ‘usucha’, a thinner tea. High quality Matcha is best prepared Koicha to appreciate the delicate flavours.