Here it is! The perfect afternoon pick-me-up: Creamy, chock full of antioxidants, super easy, with a smooth little dose of caffeine that won't give you a big spike and crash. (And you can easily dial up or dial back the caffeine by changing the amount of matcha used, without really affecting the taste of the drink). The beauty is it's also super flexible. Feel like doing this, but not that? No problem. More sweet/less sweet, creamy/not so much, warm/cold, it's all good! Bonus: unless someone knows just how easy this "recipe" actually is, it will totally impress your co-workers/instagram followers/house-guests. But that's not why you'll make it, again and again. That will happen because it's just that good. And so green!
What is matcha? It's a powdered green tea that originates from Japan and dissolves in liquid. When you drink matcha, you're drinking the actual powdered tea, not an infusion like regular brewed tea. It has a natural bright green color, a mellow grassy flavor, and a little more caffeine than the average green-tea, but still works for those that are caffeine sensitive like myself. (I said bye-bye to coffee a little over a year ago, so sad). I buy my matcha powder at Wegmans (all hail the almighty Wegmans, I'm sorry if you don't have one, it's so good that even Brooklyn is getting one), but you can also buy it on Amazon if your local grocery store doesn't carry it.
Match Health Benefits:
- Boosts your metabolism
- Contains Vitamin C, chromium, magnesium, selenium, zinc
- It simultaneously boosts concentration (from the caffeine), but it also contains the amino acid L-Theanine which affects your brainwaves to calm your body and mind (present in regular green tea too, but matcha has higher amounts)
- One study found matcha contains 137 times the polyphenols (micronutrients that prevent degenerative diseases such as heart disease and cancer) of regular green tea (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14518774)
- It's good for your heart via lowering LDL (bad) cholesterol
- It contains chlorophyll (hence the grassy, green color), whose long list of health benefits include promoting healthy iron levels, balancing hormones, helping your body detox, and giving you glowing skin!
Super Easy Coconut Milk Matcha Latte
- 1/2 - 1 tsp matcha powder
- 1 Cup coconut milk *see note below
- sweetener of choice (optional): stevia, raw honey, maple syrup, coconut crystals, etc. The amount really varies by taste and type - I use a small sprinkle of powdered Sweet Leaf stevia, but about a tsp of the other sweeteners would work
- water to thin if desired
- Heat your milk if desired. (Stove top is best, but microwave if you must. Sometimes we must, no judgment). Thin with water if you want it less creamy.
- Add the matcha powder and desired amount of sweetener.
- Whiz to combine and make frothy with a stick blender. *(See note below). If you do this, make sure it's in a tall enough container that it won't splash everywhere. You could also just toss everything in the blender, or put it in a leak-proof travel container and give it a vigorous shake-shake-shake! (I've done this when I've been on the go...it will pique your co-workers' interest). Or if you want it iced, shake it up in a cocktail shaker (vigorously again - otherwise you'll wind up with little bits of undissolved matcha powder) with ice - ta-da!
- Enjoy! It's really that easy.
*Tools: I use this Cuisinarte stick/immersion blender. In fact, I use it for smoothies, pureeing soups, making homemade mayo, really just about everything. It's my favorite kitchen tool, and also super easy to clean and dishwasher safe. (And no, I'm not getting paid to say that, although that would be cool, I just really really love this kitchen tool. It's a must have, and the higher power option is totally worth the extra $).
Coconut Milk: I make my own (also super easy) coconut milk with either full-fat canned coconut milk or coconut flakes and water. You have to be careful with store-bought ready-to-drink coconut milk, and make sure to read the label. They often contain unnecessary sweeteners (such as cane syrup), and the thickener carageenan; the research on carageenan is inconclusive, but it's been linked to gastrointestinal distress. (And we really don't want to distress our GI systems).
Enjoy! Tell me in the comments below how it came out, and share what tweaks you made.