Matcha Cups

Last Friday I had a very productive day.  I worked, did some hot yoga and then as the house became quiet, the cats curled up for their naps I headed to the kitchen with matcha in my hand.

Matcha green tea

Matcha is green tea ground up into this powder.  All the great benefits you’ve heard about green tea pertains to this green matcha X10 because you are consuming the whole leaf!! I’ve done a bit of reading and matcha is super high in antioxidants, it boosts your metabolism, detoxifies the body and replenishes your red blood cells due to its high chlorophyll content.   Because matcha is highly concentrated green tea it also increases mental alertness and is super energizing!  Drinking matcha in the morning is a great alternative to coffee since it gives you that boost of energy you need in the morning, is low cal and is super healthy for you!  Click here to learn more about matcha.

Anyway, that is my little blurb about the wonders of matcha.  Last Friday I decided drinking matcha wasn’t enough I wanted to eat matcha! I started with a basic yellow cupcake recipe, one that didn’t require a lot of flour so my cupcakes would turn out nice and fluffy and moist.  I began mixing and mixing and singing to Bob Marley, and mixing…

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I added only one teaspoon of matcha powder to the cupcake mix and voila! I put them in the oven for about 20 minutes and I had the greatest cupcake ever.  It wasn’t too earthy as matcha tends to have a very strong earthly vegetal flavour, therefore I only added one teaspoon no more no less.  Also, I made sure there was vanilla flavouring in the recipe I chose to add a nice sweetness to the matcha flavour.

But wait there’s more!

I made matcha icing!

1 cup of icing sugar

2 tablespoons of butter

1 teaspoon of vanilla

splash of milk

1/2 teaspoon of matcha powder

This is a rough estimate as I usually mix all these ingredients together until I get the right icing consistency.  After I made the icing, let the cupcakes cool down I began to spread the icing over the cupcakes and then they were ready to eat.

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And what better way to enjoy a matcha cupcake than with matcha tea on the side!

MMMMM MATCHA!

 

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Tea Time

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It’s that time of day again.  The cinnamon rolls have come out of the oven, your warm socks that just came out of the dryer are covering your toes while a cool wind blows outside and rattles the tree branches against your window.  What is missing from this scene?

Tea of course.

For me tea time can be at any time of the day.  As soon as I wake up a cup of tea is already steeping to prepare me for the rest of the day. I love having a warm cup of tea in the morning to tickle my senses and slow down my morning a bit while I enjoy my early tea.  Todays morning tea was: Glitter and Gold from Davids Tea with a bit of warm milk.

Tea in the middle of the day with a little snack is one of my favourite tea times especially when you get to enjoy it with friends. Tea brings people together much like food does.  It becomes a good excuse to meet up with a friend allowing for pleasant conversation and also gives you something to keep your hands warm when the weather gets cold.  Hungry for a little more than a snack with your tea?  Try going for High Tea where they give you little sandwiches, baked goods and those little floral tea cups with the saucers!  My favourite tea time is when I get to share and experience new teas with someone who also appreciates a good cup of tea!

Tea with food. This becomes a great excuse to eat more food because tea helps with so many things like digestion, your metabolism and it keeps you hydrated! I love drinking green or jasmine tea with Japanese food.  Last night my friends and I decided to go for all you can eat sushi and having a few cups of tea on the side definitely helps you finish those last pieces of sushi everyone tries to hide on their plates at the end of the meal.

Time is what you make of it, anytime of the day can be tea time.  Tea experiences are special because they slow down your day a little bit.  No one is going to down a hot cup of tea in five minutes without burning their tongue.  It is something to be enjoyed slowly either on your own, with a friend or on the side of a meal.  I’m sure there are some of you who drink your tea on the go, at the office or after dinner curled up in front of the television.  Even when you’re on the go, that moment you take a sip from your travel mug makes your journey a little bit better and a little bit warmer!  Enjoy that cup of tea, that little extra boost of energy, that sip of stress reliever and antioxidant source, it’s worth it!

When is your favourite tea time?

 

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Pumpkin Chai Cupcakes

More pumpkin you might ask? But of course, pumpkin and cupcakes just go so well together…and if it couldn’t get any better I added tea to the cupcakes to make a pumpkin chai tea infused cupcake!

It all started with my sweet tooth.  I have a little one in my mouth that occasionally craves sweet things here and there.  And of course, when I have these hankerings I need to start baking my own concoctions in the kitchen.  Sometimes this can go very bad and only my dog will eat what I’ve created and sometimes I end up making a chocolate chip cake with Bailey’s whip cream on top!  Mmm that was a good cake.

However, this time I followed a recipe.  Not just any old recipe but a TEA INFUSED recipe that I found on Facebook, with my favourite ingredient right now…PUMPKIN!

Pumpkin Chai Cupcakes.  Yes.  They exist.  I was on Facebook of all places and found this GREAT recipe on the DavidsTea page.

This is one of those recipes that turned out amazing.  I happened to have almost every ingredient already in my kitchen, except for apple cider vinegar, which I substituted rice vinegar for.  And there are no eggs! Weird huh?  This was my first time making cupcakes with no eggs so I was a little nervous they wouldn’t turn out, but they were excellent.

They have such a unique flavour especially because there is no real pumpkin in them but tea infused pumpkin flavouring instead.  The extra cinnamon and vanilla adds so much flavour to them, I’ve never had anything that tastes similar.  And the way you add the tea is totally different than any other baking recipe.  In a pot over the stove I simmered a cup and a quarter of milk and 6 teaspoons (4 perfect David spoons) of the pumpkin chai tea.

When the milk was hot I turned the stove top all the way to min and let the mixture steep for about 10 minutes before adding it to the rest of the ingredients.

The recipe made about 24 mini cupcakes.  The next day I tried making the regular sized ones and the recipe only made about 12 cupcakes.  However, I found that if I wanted to bake a second batch I could re-steep the mixture but for a longer time, maybe 15-20 minutes, before adding it to the rest of the ingredients again.  This may sound like there wouldn’t be enough flavour left in the tea, but there definitely was!  Also, if you don’t want to make a second batch, re-use that tea in the pot!  There is still lots of flavour left in the tea and if you re-steep it with milk again you have yourself a cup of pumpkin chai tea milk!  Which is absolutely indulgently delicious!  I definitely had a cup of pumpkin milk or two after baking the first mini batch.  MMMM!

I finished them off with pink vanilla icing and pumpkin seeds.

Happy Tea Baking!

 

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