The Tea Story
Part Three : Matcha
I’m sure you guys have watched movies or shows where bald monks clad in airy robes are silently making tea in a meditative state of mind. What they’re consuming, along with millions of people across the globe today, is called ‘Matcha’ tea. Matcha has been picking up quite a name over the past few years, and it’s finally time to unravel what it’s is all about!
Matcha is an interesting way of tea consumption because usually tea leaves are boiled in water and then consumed. But in the case of Matcha, the tea leaves are actually ground into a fine powder which is mixed with the water and consumed, so you’re actually consuming the tea leaves along with the tea!
This technique of grounding tea into fine powder can be dated back to the Song Dynasty of China ( 960-1279 AD) where the tea leaves were steam-dried and then grounded into a powder which was then mixed with water and consumed. But the interesting part is that the preparation of this tea found it’s way into the ritual practices of Zen Buddhist monks. These practices were brought into Japan in 1191 by a monk called Eisai.
These Zen Buddhist tea rituals were used as a form of meditation, where every sequence of the ritual was used to attain mindfulness and peace. It is also said that the perfect Matcha tea can only be made by those who are truly enlightened!
There are 3 main types of Matcha tea, divided according to quality :
1 . Ceremonial grade : This type of Matcha is used in the rituals by the monks and are ground by stone. It’s main characteristic is ‘Umami’ or savoriness.
2 . Premium grade : This one is not as great as ceremonial matcha, but it’s still very nutritional and full of antioxidants and vitamins. The top leafs from a tea plant are used to make these.
3 . Cooking grade : This one is not the best choice if you really wanna enjoy matcha. Some of them may be a little bitter as well, as the bottom leaves of a tea plant is used to make these.
Fun Fact : 1 serving of Matcha tea is equivalent to 10 cups of green tea!
Some actual benefits of matcha tea are :
Is packed with antioxidants including the powerful EGCg
Boosts metabolism and burns calories
Detoxifies effectively and naturally
Calms the mind and relaxes the body
Is rich in fiber, chlorophyll and vitamins
Enhances mood and aids in concentration
Provides vitamin C, selenium, chromium, zinc and magnesium
Lowers cholesterol and blood sugar
What are you still waiting for? Go indulge in some Matcha tea ASAP!