It’s finally cold in the Pacific Northwest, which means I have become very fixated on hot beverages. My latest obsession is the matcha green tea latte. You can get this beverage at many coffee shops, including Starbucks. The Starbucks version costs about as much as a day’s worth of food, so I’ve been making them at home. We are nothing if not frugal. Bonus: This is simpler than my coffee rituals, so my morning routine is faster.
Matcha powder is a finely milled, high-quality, powdered green tea from Japan. You can buy cakes, pastries, noodles, ice cream, candy, and smoothies flavored with matcha. It’s purported to have all kinds of health benefits, but I just like the flavor and energizing effect. We sourced this locally from the Tea Lady. You can also find it at high-end grocery stores, food co-ops, and health food stores. You cannot find it at Trader Joe’s. I checked.
I don’t use a lot of matcha in my lattes – about 1/4 tsp. I add the matcha powder to 8oz. of homemade soy milk (measured to fit my favorite cup) in a small sauce pan on the stove. I whirl it with my immersion blender to eliminate clumps. The milk gets very foamy if you use an immersion blender, so I recommend that you blend first, then heat it. The bubbles can mellow out while the milk warms. I greatly prefer the immersion blender, despite the foam. I cannot eradicate the matcha clumps with whisks, forks and sifting. Heat the milk and matcha, but don’t boil it.
Matcha can taste bitter, so I add sweetness to taste. Some coffee shops don’t sweeten them at all, but Starbucks sweetens their GTLs with melon syrup. It’s a little weird. I use plain sugar usually, but sometimes I take advantage of the exciting syrups we keep around. For example, this Ikea elderflower syrup.
That’s my GTL. Pour into your favorite vessel, and enjoy your Kermit-colored beverage.