· By Soar Organics
3 Tips Every Matcha Lover Should Know
Matcha is a delicate powder made from specially grown and processed green tea leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant. If you haven’t tried matcha before you should definitely give it a try. Not only is it pleasantly delicious, but it’s full of healthy nutrients. If you’re a "matcha regular" then I’m sure you’re already familiar with its rich taste and numerous health benefits. If not, you can read more on the benefits of matcha here.
Making your own matcha at home is a great way to enjoy this powerful superfood every day of the week, and not just at your favourite café. Here are some important tips every matcha lover should know to help make that perfect cup of matcha.
Storing your matcha properly will help keep it more fresh. Unopened or opened, you want to keep your matcha away from light, heat and moisture. We recommend storing your unopened matcha in a dark and cool cupboard, and your opened matcha in the fridge. If you decide to remove your matcha from its original package, make sure you store it in an airtight glass container.
Once exposed to air, the natural process of oxidation over time will reduce some of the nutritional content in your matcha. Oxidation can also impact the taste of your matcha. We recommend consuming your opened matcha within two months after opening for these reasons. However, it won’t go bad after this amount of time and you can still consume it up until the expiration date after opening.
2. Water Temperature
The temperature of your water matters. Boiling water will burn your delicate matcha powder and cause a bitter aftertaste, no matter the quality of your matcha powder. This occurs due to the tannins, a type of polyphenol found in matcha, that are released from the tea when exposed to boiling water. Tannins are actually a type of antioxidant, however they’re also responsible for the astringency of your tea. We recommend using a water temperature no greater than 175°F/80°C to experience the rich umami taste of ceremonial matcha.
Don’t have a thermometer to measure your water temperature? Heat your water on the stove in an uncovered saucepan until you see “crab eyes” (a form of bubbles) in the bottom of your pan. This means the approximate temperature of your water is now 175°F/80°C.
3. Whisking Method
Matcha isn’t naturally water-soluble and needs to be whisked in order to dissolve properly. This means that stirring a teaspoon of matcha powder into your beverage with a spoon will create clumps of undissolved matcha. A traditional bamboo whisk (chasen) is great to whisk your matcha with. However, if you don’t have one on hand a kitchen whisk will work just fine too (we recommend a roux whisk).
To properly whisk your matcha start by pouring 2 oz. of temperature appropriate water onto ½ tsp. matcha powder. Hold your bamboo whisk by firmly placing your thumb on the side closest to you and allowing your other four fingers to clasp around the handle. Make sure not to place any fingers over the end of the handle. Whisk gently in “M” motions using your wrist for movement, aim to make around 15 “M” movements. This should produce a pleasantly smooth layer of froth on top. Add some more hot water or your favourite milk. Your matcha is now ready to enjoy!