Matcha in Chinese-Mandarin is ‘抹茶’ which is pronounced ‘moah-tsa’ (this is how I would spell the pronunciation) – the first part of the word meaning ‘ground’ and second ‘tea’. This special ingredient is uniquely Japanese and used all over Asia as a flavour, health benefit and green dye.
I’ve been enjoying matcha since I was young, a typical matcha hot drink, funky matcha flavoured Kit Kat, matcha flavoured ice cream and wonderful little cakes/pastries brilliantly green from matcha but not in South Africa. Today, we are spoiled by wonderful importers that bring this green tea powder to our kitchens, like my Taiwanese friends at Matcha By Mei. They are an online shop that delivers nationwide – find green tea powder (both culinary and ceremonial matcha) and Matcha accessories like chasen whisks and chawan bowls.
Difference between ceremonial and culinary grade matcha?
Ceremonial – to drink with hot water in its purest form. Ceremonial is more expensive because it’s made from the young green tea leaves which means there’s less bitterness.
Culinary – the grade you’d use for cooking/baking.
I ordered some matcha recently and they were kind enough to gift me more to experiment with. Using the culinary matcha, I decided to make something fresh with some coconut cream sitting in my pantry and the last bit of sago (before I replenish the staple).
What’s sago? Check this post out, I ramble on a bit about sago there.
Matcha, coconut and sago (Vegan & gluten-free frozen pudding)
This isn’t an exact recipe, play around and see how you enjoy it best.
- 1/2 C cooked sago
- 2 can of coconut cream (separated into three bowls)
- 2 Tbsp culinary matcha
- 5 Tbsp hot water to liquify the matcha
- Palm sugar for sweetening
- Fruit (try something tropical, spanspek, pineapple, nectarines, peaches)
- Baby mint for garnishing
Line a cupcake tray with cling film.
Pour 1/3rd of the coconut cream into the tray. Freeze.
Mix matcha with hot water and add to 1/3rd of the coconut cream.
Sweeten the mixture with palm sugar (taste it, it shouldn’t be too sweet as you’ll have fruit with it).
Once the first layer of coconut cream is solid, pour a layer of the matcha coconut cream over each slot. Freeze.
Mix 1/3rd of the coconut cream with sago.
Once the second layer of coconut cream is solid, pour the sago and coconut cream mix over each slot. Freeze.
Serving suggestions: With tropical fruit, baby mint leaves and allow it to ‘thaw for 5 minutes’ before consuming.