I do love me some green tea. There is nothing better than a refreshing sweetened iced green tea during the summer to cool you down. In the winter, I’m partial to warming up with a green tea latte or even a simple, hot green tea at night before bed. When the matcha tea phenomenon took the world by storm, I knew I’d probably hop on the trend train seeing as I’ve always been a fan of green tea. The first time I tried matcha, I was immediately sold because the flavor is even more intense and delicious than any regular green tea I’ve ever had. So what’s the matcha madness all about? And what’s the difference between matcha and regular green tea? Well, I found that the difference lies in the way the leaves are processed and the way we drink the two are different. Matcha actually stands for “ground” or “powdered tea” and is therefore different than green tea, which is brewed or steeped in hot water. It’s the only form of green tea in which the entire leaf is consumed, which is why it contains more healthful elements. Matcha tea is about 10x better for you than regular green tea because it contains catechin polyphenols- compounds rich in antioxidants. These antioxidants offer protection against cancer, cardiovascular disease, harmful cholesterol and also help to stabilize blood sugar levels among other health benefits.
Perhaps people are crazy about this stuff because of the unique feeling of well-being it gives to all those who enjoy it. I was interested to learn more about the history that matcha holds in Japanese culture. The preparation of it is actually the focus of the Japanese tea ceremony, which has been an integral part of Japanese culture for decades. The ritual requires precise hand movements and graceful choreography. Very interesting! I may never host a tea ceremony, but I definitely enjoy matcha in many different ways from hot or cold matcha lattes to matcha smoothies, which I’ve been having for breakfast quite often lately. If you have yet to try matcha, I recommend giving it a go in smoothie form as you could add a bunch of different fruits or vegetables you like. Below is the recipe for my version of a tasty matcha smoothie. I hope you enjoy it!
You Will Need:
- 1 peeled, sliced and frozen banana
- 1/4 cup frozen pineapple chunks
- 1 cup vanilla coconut milk
- 2 tsp matcha green tea powder
- 1 cup frozen kale
- Raspberries (optional topping)
- Coconut flakes (optional topping)
Let’s Do This:
1. Add frozen banana slices, pineapple chunks, coconut milk, match powder, kale and some ice into a blender or NutriBullet. Blend on high until creamy and smooth.
2. Taste for flavor and add any extra ingredients like more frozen banana or pineapple if desired. Consistency should be somewhere between scoopable and drinkable.
3. Top smoothie with fresh raspberries and coconut flakes.
4. Drink up! Smoothie is best when fresh, but you can put into the refrigerator well sealed for up to 24 hours if necessary.