Monday, 25 July 2016

Green Tea Latte

Green Tea Latte, despite its name, has no coffee in it! It is made mainly with green tea (usually powder, however it can also be made with tea bags), milk and water.
I believe it called a "latte" because of the layer of foam or steamed milk on the top, much like a latte, and how it is mostly milk with a bit of matcha, resembling the structure of a latte.

Green Tea Latte is a great summer drink, as it is very refreshing, and of course very healthy! It can be enjoyed hot or cold, and can be modified according to your personal tastes- for instance, you could add mint or lemon. You can also modify the ingredient amounts to your personal taste.

What is matcha powder? Matcha powder, briefly, is very popular in Japan and is used in a variety of foods, such as cakes and mochi. Matcha ice-cream is also very popular. It is also used in tea ceremony, which is an important part of Japanese culture which focuses mainly on the preparation, serving and drinking of green tea. I'll perhaps cover tea ceremony in more detail in a future post. It is a finely ground powder, and it's not just ordinary green tea. The plant grows in the shade for around three weeks before the harvest, and during processing the stems and veins are removed. Matcha is very versatile, and a very important aspect of Japanese culture.

I first tried Green Tea Latte at Hyper Japan 2015, where it was available. I instantly loved it, and was very happy to discover that it can also be made at home! I looked around for some recipes, and with some modifications I created my own version. If you would like to make Green Tea Latte at home, keep reading!

  • Matcha powder (1-1 1/2 tsp.)
  • Water (1-1 1/2 tbsp.)
  • Milk (around 1 cup, but this varies)
  • A sweetener- sugar, honey, stevia, etc. (Optional)
  1. Prepare a cup or glass that you will drink the Green Tea Latte in.
  2. Sift matcha into the cup. This will get rid of any lumps.
  3. Add hot (but not boiling!) water, and whisk or stir the mixture, creating a paste.
  4. Heat the milk and your chosen sweetener in a microwave or using a stove, until it is hot. However, if you want to make iced Green Tea Latte, don't heat the milk and just add the sweetener to it.
  5. Add the milk to the matcha mixture. Stir with a teaspoon. Leave some space for froth!
  6. The froth can be made in different ways. I heat some milk in a saucepan, whisking it as it heats up. It will turn into a froth once it is whisked enough. If you are unsure, look online to see which method is best for you.
  7. Using a spoon, add the froth on top. 
  8. Sprinkle some matcha on top, and you're done! 
Tips and pointers:

  • If you're making an iced Green Tea Latte, add ice cubes. This will make it even more refreshing!
  • Matcha powder can be found online, at Asian food stores and health food stores. You might also find it in a large supermarket.
  • As I mentioned before, there are many variations! Add mint and/or lemon to make it more refreshing, or perhaps a drop of flavoured essence to give it a hint of another flavour, such as vanilla. Your imagination is the limit! 
  • If you're using cane sugar, I'd recommend using around 1-1 1/2 teaspoons.
  • You don't have to use cows' milk. You can use a substitute, such as almond milk or soy milk. 
This is how mine turned out! I added a bit too much matcha, but apart from that it's very tasty!
 Have a lovely day! ♡

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