I remember the first time I had a matcha latte. I hadn’t long been back from Australia, which surprisingly hadn’t caught onto the trend yet, or may I just hadn’t noticed these weird looking cup of green stuff.. ANYWHO, I went to The Good Life Eatery with two friends for lunch, which if I’m honest, is making me laugh out loud. A casual mid-week lunch, getting to grips again with London life.
I am a coffee girl at heart, but I was ready for this new drink to give me a buzz. By the time I’d left Australia, I had indeed become a classic Aussie coffee snob, so even with this, I had high exceptions at the same time as really having none at all. Mostly because I had no clue as to what the taste would be. I will add, I’m not much of a green drinker, I find it has a fishy back end and would just rather a peppermint or good old builders tea brew, nothing wrong with those PG tips right? So, back to the matcha trying experience, because it really was that. The food hadn’t arrived yet, so bar a small breakfast, I had a pretty empty and hungry stomach. With this in mind, that matcha got to me reeeeeal quick. The buzz was a lot stronger than coffee (I know I’m making this sound dramatic and like I was on drugs, but for real..) and I almost had those shakes you get from drinking too much coffee, but in case, matcha shakes (lol). I remember seeing the matcha craze appearing on social media, so naturally took a photo of this weird green looking thing before my eyes. Taste wise, it wasn’t nearly as bad as I had made it up to be in my head and actually, I really enjoyed it. I had it with almond milk, I’m pretty sure it was unsweetened too, so I’m pretty proud of myself on that front. I say I really enjoyed it, that was towards the end, as this was a pretty big latte class and the initial sip kinda’ freaked me out.
Fast forward a few years, I had matcha every now and again if I didn’t fancy coffee, or simply wanted something to tide me over on the way to brunch or dinner. Some of my close friends were and still are avid matcha drinkers, but I never seemed to get the same comfort feeling as I did from coffee. Having said that, I will opt for an oat milk matcha latte form Timberyard ANY DAY. I’d also never really made matcha at home until I met one of my good friends who owns his own matcha company. Naturally I quickly became obsessed. I treated myself to my favourite soy milk.. Bonsoy for those who don’t know is DIVINE. It’s thick, creamy and contains absolutely no shit. No preservatives, added sugars, oils .. basically, my kinda’ soy milk. I sound like a walking talking advert today but I discovered the magical stuff in Australia and haven’t looked back since. Like I said, I was a coffee snob, so naturally, being a soy milk snob was also my forte. I bought a little matcha whisk and bowl from amazon, excited at the prospect of making my own at home. Warming up the milk and creating a little matcha paste, it really was something special. I was almost converted, almost.
As I’m sure many of you who follow me will know, I become obsessed with things for short periods of time. Sometimes that may be a specific milk, perhaps even a type of drink (PSL.. chai, that kind of thing). A lot of the time these things stick it just depends on the frequency of these obsessions. Side note, I realise that I sound like an absolute bonkers chick, maybe I am, who knows. Anyway, as of late, I’ve really been getting back into my matcha lattes. I went off of coffee for a bit after drinking a bit too much whilst away and then back home. It wasn’t so much the caffeine I was worried about, but more the headaches and that post 3pm dip that I just couldn’t handle. This recipe came about quite randomly. I wanted to make a drink with some cashews, but didn’t have enough to make cashew milk for the fridge. I’d seem a few recipes on the internet that called for almonds or almond milk, so decided to get a little creative. I also had some coconut milk (from the can) sitting in the fridge, left over from dinner the day before (a dish that I will be putting up very soon, don’t you worry!) and it was calling to go into the matcha latte mix.
I brought out my sacred Vitamix – I literally am OBSESSED with it, in a very possessive way. It’s out of bounds to the family right now and only used on special occasions, matcha latte making of course being in that bracket. I know that sounds a little bit too much, but we have other family blenders/processors and this was an investment for a super secret side project I’m working on and I didn’t want it to just become the house holds go to (yes, I am being selfish in that sense also) but maybe that sheds a little light as to why I’m so possessive over it and I know my other vitamix gals/foodies still at home sharing everything and anything will understand. Throwing it all into the blender, I blitz the baby until it was smooth and creamy… and that froth on top, I mean who needs a hand held milk frother!
Ok so, I know you didn’t come here to listen to me ramble on about my matcha first time and love for my vitamix so I’ll pass it over to the all important recipe! This was like a huge hug in a mug (lol), but seriously, a real great afternoon pick me, well any day pick me up to be honest, but this was heaven.
What you’ll need:
2 tbsp full fat coconut cream – usually just skimmed from the top of a chilled tin. Alternatively, you could also use coconut yoghurt
1 tbsp raw cashews (if your blender isn’t as powerful, you can soak these in boiling water for about 2 hours)
1 tsp matcha green tea powder – I use Matcha Works
1/2 tsp ashwagandha *optional, hormonal balance gals, get on it!
1/8 tsp vanilla extract or pinch of vanilla bean powder
1 tsp maple syrup/agave *optional, if you find matcha a tad bitter, add a little of the sweetener
Pinch of cinnamon
1 1/2 – 2 cups hot water (not boiling)
What to do:
1. Simply put all of the ingredients into a high speed blender. Blend until smooth and creamy. If you soaked your cashews, don’t forget to drain these. Adjust the sweetness to your taste.
2. Pour into your favourite mug and dust with a little extra cinnamon for good measure.
Aside from the Instagram worthiness of matcha, it has huge benefits to the body – and mind. Caffeine can cause muscle tension and recently, and when I say recently I mean a good 2 months worth, I’ve had a pretty much non stop twitching eye, so making this switch, whilst of course enjoying a brew every now and again, is slowly starting to benefit me. Matcha powder is also incredible high in antioxidants, as well as a mood enhancer and promotes concentration, so instead of those jittery post coffee afternoons some people may get, maybe switch over to a cheeky little matcha latte instead. Don’t get me wrong, I still drink coffee, but of course only the best, being the coffee/milk snob that I am. Sometimes there really isn’t anything better than a strong black coffee or a soy flat white, but when I’m not drinking it, you’ll definitely find me, matcha in hand (sometimes even iced), LA style in London, dur.