Gotcha Matcha

One of my very favorite places to go when I want to treat myself to a little bit of Zen is Samovar Tea Lounge in the Castro (does it help that ImagiKnit is right across the street? maybe…).  I was recently there with the lovely Natalie, and we had delicious rice bowls, flaky scones and something I’ve never had before but totally blew me away: a matcha shake.  I had seen iced green tea concoctions before and vaguely knew that Starbucks made a frappuccino version, but faced with an unfamiliar green brew versus my favorite iced mocha with whip?  No contest.  I didn’t know what I was missing.  This thing was insane– creamy, sweet, grassy… I couldn’t get enough.  As we were paying the bill I asked if they sold the matcha, or a mix to make the shakes at home.  Another thing about Samovar– the waitstaff is always unfailingly kind, solicitous and soft-spoken, and to a man or woman looks you in the eye when waiting on you, something I realise when I experience it is very unusual. At any rate, our waiter apologetically explained that they don’t carry it in the store but I could get it online.  I tripped away, determined to order some.  When I finally got around to going to the website, I almost fell out of my chair– that matcha shake mix?  It was $125!!!!! No wonder it was so delicious, it was gold in a cup.

Undaunted, I decided to recreate it on my own, but a little bit more budget-friendly.  So I went to the bulk bins at the Berkeley Bowl and picked up 8oz of lovely green matcha powder, and a bag of palm sugar (which is what they use at Samovar for sweetener) and some coconut milk drink at Trader Joe’s (I think they use soy milk at Samovar).

1 tsp of matcha, 1T of palm crystals and 1 cup of coconut drink and a milk frother later and I’m declaring it a raging success.

Yum.  Apparently matcha has all kinds of health benefits too, which makes me feel a little bit less guilty about trading my customary afternoon iced coffee for one of these from now on.

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2 Comments

Filed under Sip, Yum

2 Responses to Gotcha Matcha

  1. I was so excited when I saw your blog pop up with a post in my feed reader! Also, this recipe sounds amazing and I’m determined to get my hands on some Matcha now. :-)

    • nancy

      Thanks so much for coming back after so long, Abigail– my girls have your beautiful work in their room and I enjoy looking at it every day. Can’t wait until they are old enough to read some of the neat books you have illustrated too… soon!

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