Steeped for centuries, matcha green tea is swirled into the culture of Japan. From sublime meditation to "sanji" (3 o’clock) snack time, green tea is present. Sailing in from China in (1191) in the satchel of Zen Buddhist monk, Eisai, the tea settled comfortably into Japanese society. The prominent monk’s PR may have helped to popularize matcha tea in Japan. Eisai allegedly declared, “matcha green tea is the elixir of the mortals.
Matcha is said to focus one’s meditation. The samurai also drank green tea before battle. Modern day warriors in the Japanese workforce also down green tea daily. Special occasions and tea ceremonies feature matcha tea from Uji, Japan. (Between the ancient capitals of Japan - Kyoto and Nara.)
Besides the drink, matcha green tea brightens macarons, cakes, ice cream sundaes and soba noodles. If in Kyoto, Japan…Save room for dessert! As a connoisseur of ice cream, I promise you the best green tea soft serve is found in Kyoto. (There’s a lot of walking around temple and castle grounds in Kyoto so you can afford the calories.
Inspired by the many chocolate bars filled with matcha cream in Japan, I dressed up a Glutino Gluten-Free Decadent Chocolate Cake with matcha green tea frosting. (I used the cupcake how-to and poured the batter into rose shaped molds.) The matcha green tea frosting also serves double-duty as dip. Crisp, sweet Glutino Gluten-Free Lemon Wafers pairs well with the creamy, pungent matcha frosting, too.
Ninja Note: Before making Japanese Matcha Green Tea Frosting and Dip, remember to place your mixing bowl and beaters in the freezer. Cream is whipped up so much easier with a very cold bowl.