I'd planned on doing chocolate teas this week but when my friend Lori said she was baking matcha scones on Sunday, I decided to switch things up. That means I had to run out and buy some matcha because I've never had it before!
I'm not sure this is a fair review, then, so be on the lookout for more matcha later. Wegmans has a pretty good tea section but my particular Wegmans only had two matchas, and they seemed like pretty much exactly the same thing. I chose the Rishi Matcha--not for any particular reason, really.
I know enough from reading up about matcha tea that using a tea bag version probably isn't the "real" matcha experience. Still, since I wasn't sure if I would be a liker or a hater, I didn't want to extend my search to find a powdered version to mix right into my water for the appropriate frothy drink, so I went with the tea bags to start.
Not much flavor, really. I followed the directions on the box exactly: 170 degree water, steep for 2 minutes. My electric kettle has a temperature setting on it so I got exactly 170 degree water, and I timed the steeping.
Now, that all being said: I didn't hate. So I'll be putting matcha on my list for my next online tea order, I think. It seems to mostly come in flavored versions, so perhaps the fact that mine didn't have much flavor on its own is typical, thus tea purveyors using it in a lot of blends.
For those of you unfamiliar with matcha, it's a Japanese green tea with high caffeine content. Because you're supposed to actually mix the tea into your water (rather than steeping it in a bag), you're drinking the entire leaf and therefore getting more nutritional benefit. Matchasource.com says that drinking one cup of matcha tea equals the nutritional benefits of 10 cups of Japanese green tea. In fact, according to that website, matcha tea is basically the cure for whatever ails ya. I always take grandiose claims with a grain of salt and, frankly, I don't drink tea to boost my immune system. I drink it because I like it. And with the amount of tea I've been drinking the last several months and the fact that I've still been sick more than I've been healthy lately, clearly the whole "boost your immune system" claim is arguable.
Still n' all, tea is better for me than sody-pop and lots of other beverages I could be drinking, so heat me up another cuppa!
I can't resist matching Japanese tea with some Japanese-inspired quilting.
I don't actually own this book, but it's been on my wish list forever. I fell in love with the Japanese taupe quilt trend when it first hit the U.S. years ago--probably the very early 2000s. I find the colors fascinating. In fact, when I was hand-dyeing, my favorite colors to play with are these weird, murky earth-tones. There's something very soothing and natural feeling about them.
So, although I can't speak with any authority as to whether this book is well done, I can highly recommend the concept!
I did make one quilt inspired by Japanese taupes; I started collecting the fabrics when they were first popular, then I used them in a block of the month our guild was doing back in 2008. I finally finished piecing the quilt at a retreat last year. It's still a UFO, though, as I've not quilted it yet. I had a good time trying to balance all the variations on "taupe"--it can lean towards green or purple. And I found the perfect border fabric!
Have you made a taupe quilt?
And now for snackies...
Lori has whipped up some matcha lime coconut scones! Don't these just look delicious? Find her recipe (and book review) here!