how to make matcha paste

luca
Joined: 8 Jan 2010
User offline. Last seen 4 years 47 weeks ago.

Hello Maki (and everyone else out there)!
Thanks for the awesome sites by the way, love every article and recipe! Anyway, i'm not sure if i should be posting this here but i recently bought some commercial mochi (made in taiwan as opposed to japan) and it tasted really good. Out of the flavours (azuki, matcha and peanut) I loved the green tea one the best so i looked at the ingredients on the back and it just simply stated the filling was made from green tea paste. I then searched the web painstakingly trying to find a recipe but didn't have much luck. Well, I did kind of but the recipe didn't seem (by seem I mean I didn't try it out but rather judged the ingredients) to be able to form a paste-like consistency just like commercial tsubuan's (it was just add water to matcha powder.) So I just want to know whether you have a certain way to make the paste to deem it appropriate to use as a filling for mochi? By the way, I've heard that matcha and green tea powder (from other countries) do not give the same taste, is it true?
Thanks a lot!

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Loretta
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Bento-ing from: London › UK
Joined: 4 Mar 2009
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Re: how to make matcha paste

There used to be sort of speciality mochi dessert chain called "mochi cream" in Japan, but they may have expanded too much too soon as some of their franchise outlets were no longer trading on my last visit. But they had a matcha mochi cream variation - it had a sort of ice cream centre.

Basically, matcha goes well with creamy white chocolate or vanilla so you could use either taste, or anything sweet and milky, as a base for your matcha cream.

Wikipedia will tell you that "Matcha is made from shade-grown tea leaves" - but there is no way that everything labelled as being matcha flavoured could be produced with these very finest tea tips!

Is there a difference between Japanese matcha and powdered green tea from elsewhere?
For flavouring ice cream or custard or milkshake frappucinos I don't think I could tell the difference.
What is VITAL with 'matcha' is that it is fresh and not stale. I'd rather have some fresh non Japanese cheap powdered green tea than the finest shade grown matcha passed its best before date. Stale matcha is really horrible - thankfully, you can tell by the smell if it's gone off.

My advice is that you get the best matcha that you can happily afford, make sure it's nowhere near its use by date, and, once opened, keep it sealed in the fridge and use it as quickly as you can. Unless you know you'll be using a lot of it, get it in as small a can as possible.
To make a matcha cream filling with it, whisk a couple of teaspoons into a little hot water and then blend this into the creamy filling of your choice. Think of it as tea flavoured cocoa powder.

another_amanda
Bento-ing from: › USA
Joined: 12 Aug 2009
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Re: how to make matcha paste

I imagine that mixing matcha with white bean paste would taste good. I've made hanami dango by mixing iced green tea powder with the mochi. The green tea powder was super low-quality and I wouldn't dream of drinking the stuff as per the box instructions, but it worked well for desserts. The taste was probably far from authentic, but it still tasted good.

luca
Joined: 8 Jan 2010
User offline. Last seen 4 years 47 weeks ago.
Re: how to make matcha paste

Thanks both Loretta and another_amanda! I think I'll give both suggestions a try but I don't think I'll use the white chocolate since it'll be a bit too sweet. I had a few more mochis yesterday and it does seem that they use some sort of bean paste and then add colouring and matcha powder to it. I still haven't been able to find matcha powder speciifically so as a last resort I'll probably use chinese green tea powder. I'll let you know of the results when my experiment is over=D

Loretta
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Bento-ing from: London › UK
Joined: 4 Mar 2009
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Re: how to make matcha paste

If have some patience (and a pestle and mortar) you can grind your own matcha from green tea.
I once bought some high grade sencha from a posh London store called Fortnum & Masons and the tea was somehow too boring to drink (IMO a good tea should make you thirst for another sip after you swallow your last). I ground it in mortar with a pestle and discarded the leaf veins so that only a powder was left and used that to flavour desserts with.
It worked out quite well, particularly as I only needed to grind what I needed and the tea leaves lasted longer than powdered tea does before it becomes stale.

I think another_amanda's white bean advice is excellent. I do hope you get the matcha paste you're after - and that you'll report back!

Pat
Re: how to make matcha paste

I bought matcha from Lupicia (http://www.lupiciausa.com/product_p/12308007.htm). I love tea...and this place is a tea heaven. I like to make green tea ice cream, and it got expensive buying in little tins at the market. This one comes in a big pouch for a good price. I also sprinkle matcha on plain yogurt with honey, or make green tea soy latte.

maki
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Bento-ing from: somewhere › France
Joined: 24 Jan 2007
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Re: how to make matcha paste

I haven't replied to this because to be honest, unless I taste something or know exactly what it is, I don't really feel comfortable saying how something is made. I am guessing that the ingredient list is sort of incomplete there....and that the filling could be some sort of white bean paste, sugar and some green tea...but yeah, I'd have to taste it first. Sorry ^_^;

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Loretta
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Bento-ing from: London › UK
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Re: how to make matcha paste

Just an update on making your own matcha type green tea powder.

I completely went off caffeine whilst I was pregnant and have a few packs of mid range sencha that are a bit past their prime now, so I did a bit of experimenting.
Turning sencha into a powder you can cook with was easier than I remembered, you don't even need that much patience! Takes under a minute to grind a heaped teaspoon of sencha to a dust with a pestle and mortar. Then you just need to scoop up the powder and pass it through a fine mesh sieve (I used a metal strainer from inside a teapot). Whatever's left in the sieve, if it's still quite green (and not all straw and twig colour) you can just continue grinding to see if you can render any of it into powder and then discard the residue - you could even drop a pinch of sugar in there to help the grinding along.
I ended up with a generous portion of powdered green tea which dissolved easily in hot water and made very nice green tea ice cream.
Basically, the better and fresher the tea, the better the "matcha" powder you'll get from it. But I am surprised at what you can 'get away with' when it comes to sencha quality for making powder with.
I've proven to myself that high grade matcha can be a bit of an extravagance for some desserts. For occasional cooking use, grinding sencha seems much more economical and convenient.
I hope this helps someone!

gunth
Re: how to make matcha paste

nice thoughts.....

the self pestle-and-mortaring aside I had GREAT experience with using the matcha flavor syrup I got from mizubashou sake company - nagai san, a friend produces it, I think.....

it was as good or better than the self ground sencha and its VERY convenient to put into icecram or better mix in.

I love it...

for details, I have just discovered your blog and am tres enchante. and of course have added it to my igoogle.

gunther

Re: how to make matcha paste

Someone told me to mix lotus paste with green tea powder... that would be a sweeter alternative to the white bean idea.

anon.
Re: how to make matcha paste

Perhaps a bit late, but I just got back from Taiwan and had the opportunity to make matcha in this little qauqaut restaurant about 1/2 an hour outside of Hsinchu:

You definitely need patience and a mortar and pestle.

Mortar and pestle was put in front of us with the ingredients alrady inside; it looked like:

3 tbsp of green tea leaves (NOT powder!!)
about 1/2 cup peanuts
about 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
1 tbsp mango seeds

combine in mortar until completely smooth, a thick paste, peanut butter consistency

add hot water, never boiling, and whisk until the paste is completely incorporated.

enjoy!

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