The Best Ways to Enjoy Matcha -- 6 Delicious Matcha Recipes!
You don't know how many times I have encountered people who ditch Matcha after trying it once. They say that it's too grassy, bitter, and kind of tastes like seaweed. But Matcha is so much more than that and is so much better than that. In reality, those people are not preparing it correctly and are therefore missing out on a whole lot of health benefits and happiness.
The thing about Matcha is that its flavor profile can change depending on how you prepare it. It makes sense -- no two cups of coffee are exactly the same. Likewise, no two types of coffee bean are the same. I'm sure we have all experienced the best and worst cups of coffee in our lifetime. One tastes like burnt rubber, while the other tastes like buttery salted and sweetened pecans with a sweet floral bitterness. Which brings me to my first point:
If you're going to drink Matcha, make sure you're using a ceremonial grade first. The grounded matcha is the foundation of your drink. Using a low quality grade will undoubtedly lead a low quality tasting cup of tea. Therefore, for all of the recipes below, I recommend using a high quality (premium) ceremonial grade Matcha. Trust me, you'll thank me!
Earthy, Frothy, and Creamy
Matcha is traditionally prepare warm without any additives such as milk or sugar. Meaning "light-tea" or "weak-tea", usu-cha refers to a frothy, bubbly, cup of Matcha. It is earthy and slightly sweet. It is perfect for dwelling in the natural earthy and nutty flavors of matcha.
How to prepare:
Shift 1 & 1/2 tsp of matcha into a bowl. Add enough hot water (not boiling, but still nice and warm) to completely cover the matcha. You can adjust amount the water depending on how thick you like it. Using a bamboo whisk (chasen), whisk the matcha in a z-pattern until frothy bubbles appear. Sip away & enjoy!
Traditional, Creamy, & Bold
pic by T.Tseng
Koi-cha is much like a concentrated version of usu-cha. I recommend only using the finest quality matcha for koi-cha, as its method of preparation brings out its natural bitterness. (If you need more information on matcha quality, visit our FAQ page). Using only the finest leaves will leave a slightly sweet-bitter tang on your tongue, as opposed to an overwhelmingly grassy bitterness.
How to Prepare:
Sift 1 tsp of matcha into a shallow bowl. Add a dash of water to completely cover the matcha powder. Using a Chasen, mix the matcha in a circular motion, gently scraping the matcha from the bowl. Mix well and add water as needed. The consistency should be thick and creamy, like whole milk.
pic by: rumpleteaser
Ama-cha, meaning "sweet-tea" is an adaptation of usu and koi-cha. Using the same recipe, it is enjoyed with a dash of brown sugar. The sweetness of the sugar pairs well with matcha's earthy profile.
Icy, creamy, and sweet
pic by: Love and Lemons
Not a traditional recipe in any form, hiya-cha (yes, I made up the name, haha), refers to iced-matcha. It is perfect for introducing matcha to those who are skeptical of it, as it significantly removes any natural bitter flavor. Instead, it hightens it's natural amami (sweetness) and umami (savory) flavors.
The recipe is simple and requires little to no effort. Simply add 1 & 1/2 tsp of matcha to a handheld blender. Poor in one cup of icy cold water, and blend for about 10 seconds. There should be a slight foam head at the top.
Poor the iced matcha in a glass filled with ice and enjoy!
bold, nutty, and umami
Fuku-cha is much like hiya-cha, but is much more concentrated. Using slightly more matcha, the ratio of water to matcha is much smaller, and therefore has a much stronger taste on your palate. I commonly call fuku-cha "moonstorm matcha" as the foamy pattern reminds me both of the moon and a stormy night. It is without a doubt my favorite way to enjoy matcha.
How to prepare:
Do the same as you would with hiya-cha, but lessen the amount of water, and add a dash more of matcha. When blended, the foam at the top should be about 1/2 an inch to an inch thick, depending on the shape of your blender. It should be served in a tall, almost shot-glass like glass, topped with a generous amount of ice cubes.
Milk, Sweet, & Light
pic by: Noodoso
Nyuu-cha, meaning "milk-tea" is Matcha mixed with a milk of your choice. This can range from whole milk, to dairy-free alternatives like almond or soy milk. This can have no recipe, as it is really up to you to explore how you enjoy Matcha. It can be served iced or warm, like a latte or a cappuccino. Some people add sugar along with their matcha-milk, while others may add a boost of protein powder! It is up to you!