Matcha Latte

img_3851I recently discovered matcha.  I know I am late to the party, but sometimes I am slow to change.  I read about all of the health benefits and the fact that really got me was that it gives you energy, helps you focus without the stimulant effects of regular caffeine.  Basically you get the high without the side effects. Yes please!

I started adding it to my green smoothie every morning.  Easy and tasty.  I went to a tea shop and ordered a cup of matcha.  Not so tasty…a cup of grass clippings.  Then, I discovered the matcha latte.  Whoo hoo!

I started making all of my own nut milks once I realized how easy it was and how much better they tasted.  I have tried this with almond milk and cashew milk.  Both are delicious.

Matcha is finely ground green tea.  It is the entire tea leaf, so you get all of the benefits of the leaf.  Matcha is unique because it contains a potent class of antioxidant known as catechins, which isn’t found in other foods. It is a specific catechin called EGCg (epigallocatechin gallate), which provides potent cancer-fighting properties.

Matcha boosts metabolism and burns fat without raising the heart rate or blood pressure.  It is rich in a rare amino acid, L-Theanine that creates alpha waves in the brain.   How does this affect the brain?  Well, stress can induce beta waves which result in an excited and  agitated state.  Alpha waves help promote a state of relaxation and well-being.  Matcha contains up to five times more L-Theanine than regular black and green teas. L-Theanine also helps promote concentration and clarity without the usual caffeine side effects.

Some additional benefits to matcha are that it is rich in fiber, chlorophyll, vitamin C, selenium, chromium, zinc and magnesium.  Because of the powerful antioxidants it helps lower cholesterol and blood sugar.

Matcha comes in different grades…ceremonial, premium and cooking/kitchen grade.  For the purpose of drinks, the ceremonial or premium grade are the best.

Have I convinced you to try it?  This process can be as easy or difficult as you make it.  I go for easy and it tastes delicious!

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Matcha Latte

1 teaspoon of Matcha

¼ cup hot water

¾ c milk of your choice

Sweetener of your choice (sugar, maple syrup, agave nectar)

Put the matcha in a mug.  Pour the hot water over it and stir until it is totally dissolved.   You don’t want any matcha chunks in your latte.  You can use the traditional matcha ceremonial bamboo whisk if you have one.  I just use a spoon.  Heat your milk.  You can heat it on the stove or use a milk frother if you have one.  I heat mine on the stove and either whisk it vigorously until it foams (a great workout) or toss it in the blender and whip it up till it foams.  It only takes about 30 seconds in a blender to foam up.

Pour the milk over the matcha and save the foam for the top.  You can add your sweetener.  I use my sweetened, vanilla almond or cashew milk and I don’t need any added sweetener.

You can sprinkle with cinnamon or cacao powder if you are feeling fancy!

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