Matcha is considered one of the ‘super foods’ of today not only for its numerous healthful benefits but also for its versatility as a beverage and culinary ingredient. There’s always seems to be a time and place for the silky-smooth green tea powder to make an appearance in our plates and cups, from our morning lattes to our nightcap cocktails; and from breakfast grubs to dinner entrees, to after-meal desserts.
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If you will print and compile all matcha-infused recipes available online, you could probably fill a binder at least an inch thick. It will also be a wide-ranging compendium of sundry dishes from appetizers to desserts, and to everything else in between and on the side. The collection will be of diverse authorships and culinary styles, a testament to the green tea powder’s adaptability to different texture and flavor profiles.
Clearly, what was traditionally used to make simple tea drinks for centuries has been given various spins by numerous professional and private food technicians of our time. And whatever inspired them in devising their respective recipes will surely fit in one or all of the following categorical reasons:
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Matcha is increasingly being used today to power up the usual milk and cereal breakfasts, as well as other staples such as pancakes, waffles, oatmeal, biscuits, mueslis, grilled cheeses, omelets and frittatas. Sifted raw matcha is also used as sprinkle on French toasts and other sweet morning treats, including those already mentioned, in combination with confectioner’s sugar. The two powders seem to complement each other perfectly both in color contrast and flavor.
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The silky-smooth green tea powder can be infused in various sauces, jus, bisques, purees, chutneys, salsas, demi-glaces, and other entrée components. It can also be stirred in with whole grains, potatoes or flour mixes to make a wide range of entrees such as risotto, gnocchi, grits, sushi, a variety of pasta dishes and more. Matcha can also be used as one of the seasonings for making sausages, meat patties, meatballs, etc., as well as a component for dry rubs and breading mixes for grilling, roasting, baking, braising or frying a variety of meat cuts, vegetables and seafood. It can also be used as garnish for many different dishes.
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Matcha can give an extra layer of flavor, vibrancy and healthful benefits to any kind of soup or salad. It can be introduced to any kind of broth just before turning off the stove or even after terminating the heat source. As for salads, raw matcha can be tossed together with other ingredients or can be sprinkled on top of the dish prior to serving. It particularly brightens bound salads such as egg salad, potato salad, pasta salad, tuna salad, etc.
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Matcha powder can be directly mixed in the dough for making buns, croissants, dinner rolls, baguettes, muffins, bagels, profiteroles and other breads. It can also be added to custards, creams, gelatins, dipping sauces, compotes, glazing pastes and other components for icing, filling and garnishing cakes, pastries, donuts, cream puffs truffles and other treats. Sifted raw powder can also be used as toppings or coatings for various baked goods.
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There is actually a thin line between desserts and many pastry products. There are even some salads that can likewise be listed in dessert menus. For whatever sub-classifications each dessert item may fall, chances are it can somehow infused or topped with matcha powder. Many professional and home bakers have already succeeded in incorporating the highly nutritious matcha to cheesecakes, parfaits, cupcakes, mousses, panna cottas, ice creams, layered cakes, cookies, crepes, motchi balls, chocolate bars and other sweet treats. It is also worth mentioning that sifted raw matcha powder particularly enlivens the appearance of any whipped cream-capped desserts.
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As many health buffs learned to instill matcha in their power shakes, throngs of professional and aspiring mixologists have also succeeded on their end in the ‘greening’ of some of the classic bar favorites such as frozen margaritas, martinis, juleps and more. Evidently, matcha can also be thrown in blenders and cocktail shakers along with other liquid and solid ingredients to create something delicious and refreshing.
One last thing: you can use the least expensive Culinary Grade matcha powder in almost all drink or food preparations mentioned in this article. In fact, even though it is most recommended to use at least a Café Grade matcha in making beverages, it was found out that culinary grade matcha tends to work adequately in iced drinks. However, make sure that the powder you are using is in good condition and has not passed its shelf life. Do not use powders that are already brownish in color and has a hay-like scent.
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