El Paso, Texas — First off, many people may be asking, "What is matcha?" Matcha is a powder made up of 100% ground green tea leaves. It is most commonly used as a substitute for coffee, but it can also be used in recipes for baked goods.
The flavor is that of green tea. The powder can be mixed with hot water and enjoyed alone, or with your choice of milk and honey. My favorite matcha drink recipe includes mixing the green powder with almond milk and local raw honey.
While matcha tastes like green tea, it has benefits that far outweigh that of regular green tea due to the way it is harvested, according to health.com. Matcha is reportedly rich in antioxidants, and research shows it can boost metabolism.
I decided to take the test for a week... and ditch coffee for matcha in the mornings.
In looking for a good-quality matcha, I was happy to find Baatcha Matcha. It's 100% organic, meaning no genetically modified organisms or pesticides. Each package includes its own spoon to help measure out the perfect amount of matcha.
What I found:
- I quickly learned I needed nowhere near the recommended amount on the package. Maybe someday, I'll work myself up to that amount, but I suggest starting with half the recommended amount as a trial run.
- I mixed the powder with hot water alone and truly loved the "pure" flavor. It definitely tastes like green tea, albeit better and cleaner.
- I also found that there was no "caffeine buzz," meaning no jittery feeling. Instead, the experience is similar to what many refer to as "a sustained alertness."
The price of matcha may be a little intimidating at first when compared to coffee. However, keep in mind that it takes less matcha powder than coffee to produce a cup. Also, according to health experts, the benefits of matcha far outweigh that of traditional coffee.
While my love for matcha has grown, it may take a little time for my full conversion from coffee based solely on availability. In the meantime, I also plan to explore using the culinary matcha for baking adventures, like the matcha tea cake cookies recipe.