One of the best ways to enjoy this delicious beverage is with a Matcha Latte. For the uninitiated, this tea is a Japanese variety and can be served either hot or cold. This article provides a comprehensive guide for making Matcha Lattes and will cover everything you need to know about this beverage.
Matcha is a type of Japanese green tea produced from the leaves of Camellia Sinensis and grown in the southern region of Japan. Matcha is a Japanese term meaning powdered tea and the Samurai swordsman has enjoyed it for centuries as an energizing beverage.
This beverage can be prepared either hot or cold and is often served with honey or sweetened condensed milk. The preparation of Matcha is very similar to tea production. However, the method for preparing a latte is slightly different.
These lattes are served cold, and most of its components other than the tea are prepared in advance. Some people prefer to buy a ready-made latte cup to serve Matcha, so consumers need to understand how Matcha lattes are brewed and served.
All About Matcha
Matcha refers to powdered tea and is prepared in a similar way to green tea. This beverage is derived from decaffeinated green tea but includes extra energy and boost. Matcha contains L-theanine, an amino acid naturally found in other foods, for example, sunflowers, cocoa, and green tea.
There are two major types of Matcha – one from Japan and another from China. The Japanese Matcha is made from the tea called Gyokuro and it is prepared by roasting the leaves in a pan before they are ground. The Chinese Matcha is typically made from the tea called Sencha and it is prepared by steaming the tea leaves.
The Japanese have traditionally favored Sencha over Gyokuro which has become a controversial subject among gourmets. Japan makes up around 60% of all of the world’s Matcha with China taking approximately 30% of the market share.
The Health Benefits of Matcha
Although the health benefits of Matcha may not sound as dramatic as some other food and drink options, it is still one of the best sources of antioxidants. The quantity of L-theanine in Matcha is more than in other brands of green teas. Studies have shown that drinking Matcha tea can help lower both stress and anxiety levels.
Also, Matcha is known to have a calm effect on the human body that can help reduce the frequency of heart palpitations. It has been shown that this beverage can boost your metabolism and help you lose weight by using fat as a fuel source.
Matcha tea helps in giving you energy and contains more caffeine than common green tea. It also contains antioxidants such as polyphenols which are powerful, yet unknown anti-cancerous agents. Matcha tea has been shown to increase blood flow and can lead to a reduction in cholesterol levels in the body. Other studies have shown that those who drink Matcha tea regularly tend to live longer.
Is Matcha A Better Option Than Caffeine?
Consuming more than one ounce of caffeine per day increases the risk of health issues such as cardiovascular diseases, muscle pain, nausea and jitters. The dose of caffeine in a cup of Matcha tea is approximately 1/3 the amount found in a cup of coffee.
A 2014 study conducted by Tufts University School Of Medicine showed that those who drank Matcha tea daily had a significantly lower risk of death by any cause, including cancer.
Matcha Latte Recipe
6 tsp Matcha powder (Organic Matcha recommended)
2 cups of hot water
Milk (4% is recommended for a creamy foaming experience)
1 tsp ground cinnamon (optional)
How to Make a Matcha Latte in 5 Easy Steps
1. The first step is to heat your cup of milk in the microwave or on the stove. You can use 2% for a rich taste without all the fat or use whole milk for a thinner version. The latter part is optimal for iced tea. Ensure the milk is warm but not hot, preferably at about 150 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Next, you will take two teaspoons of Matcha and mix it into 1 cup of water in a small bowl. Don’t over-blend as you would like some texture for the latte.
3. Slowly pour the hot milk into the cream mixture and whisk until smooth and frothy. Be sure to use the whisk for the best results.
4. Pour this frothy mixture into your mug and have an enjoyable drinking experience.
5. You can also add a dash of cinnamon for an extra kick of flavor, but that is optional.
What Is the Difference Between Ceremonial Matcha and Culinary Matcha?
The most significant difference between Matcha for drinking and cooking is the level of processing. When you consume Matcha, you are consuming the entire leaf ground into a fine powder. On the other hand, Culinary Matcha is processed to remove the stems and veins, leaving behind just the green leaf and desirable nutrients.
Culinary Matcha is usually a brighter shade of green because these stems and veins contain chlorophyll, giving Matcha its standard color (hence why culinary Matcha is much greener than ceremonial grade).
Why Are Matcha Lattes Becoming More Popular?
Matcha Lattes are becoming increasingly popular because they contain powerful antioxidants, nutrients, and a caffeinated kick without the adverse side effects of coffee. Also, most people who consume them will enjoy that the drink is very low in calories and fat. These lattes can also be enjoyed cold or warm, depending on your preference.
It is essential to keep in mind that a Matcha latte is not the same as a traditional cup of green tea. While the flavor profile will be similar to many green teas, it does have its unique taste and aroma. You may notice that it doesn’t have a bitter aftertaste when you drink Matcha tea, which tends to be the case with many popular caffeinated beverages.
Q: Can I drink Matcha if I am lactose intolerant?
A: Yes, the proteins in Matcha do not contain the lactose found in cow’s milk and therefore are safe for consumption by those with milk allergies. The major components of Matcha tea that do not have lactose include caffeine, amino acids such as L-theanine, and most polyphenols.
Q. Are there any benefits to taking Matcha tea?
A. Those who consume this beverage daily will enjoy many significant health benefits, including the following:
It can help relax your mind and body, making you feel calm and serene. This beverage improves mental performance and revitalizes energy levels. In addition to it, the tea doesn’t cause anxiety or stomach issues.
Q. What are the side effects of drinking Matcha tea?
A. One of the potential side effects is dizziness that can occur when you consume Matcha in large amounts. Also, it has been shown that a small percentage of people have experienced GI distress, which may be due to an allergy to one of the components found in this beverage.