Bored of drinking the same old regular green tea? Trying switching to Matcha instead. If you are wondering what on earth is Matcha, then don’t worry we got you covered.
What is Matcha?
Matcha is finely ground powder of specially grown and processed green tea. It has its origins from Japan and is drunk as tea or used as an ingredient in recipes. Its health benefits exceed that of other green teas as it has 137 times more antioxidants than other teas. This is due to the fact that matcha drinkers ingest the whole leaf and not just the brewed water.
Originating from the Chinese Tang dynasty, matcha was brought to Japan by a Buddhist monk over 900 years ago. Matcha has been a key component of the Zen Buddhism philosophy ever since, especially in tea ceremonies.
The traditional Chinese and Japanese tea ceremony centers on the preparation, serving, and drinking of matcha as hot tea and embodies a meditative spiritual style. In modern times, matcha has not lost its relevance. It has come to be used to make matcha latte and flavour and dye foods such as mochi and soba noodles, green tea ice cream and a variety of Japanese confectionaries.
Matcha in Assam
And now the Japanese brew has some serious competition from the one processed right here in Assam. The tea garden responsible for this is Chota Tingrai in Tinsukia district. A few months back, the tea garden in its bid to foray into the green tea sector, had set up a Japanese green tea plant, including machinery and expertise from Japan. Now they have come up with matcha. Not only that they have also managed to sell a small quantity to an Amritsar based tea trader.
Mrityunjay Jalan, the director of Jalan Industries Pvt Ltd, which owns Chota Tingrai believes there are some differences. The Assam brew is a bit different in terms of aroma and flavour to that of the original Japanese.
‘The Japanese matcha has a strong vegetal flavour with a sweet aftertaste while the one we are producing is a lot smoother and has a more balanced flavour throughout,’ he told the media.
Reiterating the same is M Yanagawa from Japan, who is supervising the work at Chota Tingrai. In addition to that, Yanagawa said the Assam matcha has less smell, and it has a smooth flavour with a tinge of sweetness in it.
Danish Patel of Jashbai F Patel, the Amritsar-based company which bought the matcha, said the quality of the matcha powder compared to the imported ones was much better. He is also of the view that awareness among the masses is necessary in order to sell it.
‘The Indian counterpart has won the game. It has an unparalleled quality and excellent liquor. The taste is pungent but the aftertaste is surprisingly satisfying. It has all the benefits of matcha,’ he said.