St Patrick’s Day Matcha Cake

March 4th, 2015

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Need a delicious recipe idea for St. Patrick’s day? Use Matcha! In celebration of this upcoming holiday and everything green, I tried making a simple Matcha cake with a rich buttercream frosting. Since the Matcha naturally turns everything so beautifully green, there’s no need for food coloring in your batter, especially when mixed with light colored ingredients, like flour or white chocolate. Anyways, this cake recipe was taken and modified from blogger Molly Yeh’s Matcha cake recipe that she created for Aiya last month. The possibilities are endless for St Patricks day themed treats when using Aiya’s Cooking Grade Matcha, but we’ll start off with this yummy jade green cake for your festivities.

A couple tips: Sift the dry ingredients together for a smoother cake finish, and make sure you soften the butter to room temperature before making your frosting. I made the mistake of microwaving the butter to soften, and the icing came out a bit softer than I desired. If this happens, leave the frosting in the fridge for a bit before decorating, and make sure the cakes are fully cooled to avoid having runny icing. Happy baking!

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha
  • 1 3/4 cup Sugar
  • 5 cup All-purpose flour
  • 5 tsp Baking soda
  • 5 tsp Baking powder
  • 5 tsp  Salt
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
  • 5 cup oil
  • 5 tbsp Vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup Boiling water

Frosting:

  • 2 cups softened butter
  • 4 2/3 cups Powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • A pinch of salt

Decorations:

  • Green food coloring
  • Cake fondant

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[Directions]

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease 2 round cake pans.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together all the wet ingredients except the boiling water.
  5. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and then stir in the boiling water. (It will be a very thin batter.)
  6. Pour into cake pans and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Begin checking at 28 minutes.
  7. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 minutes, and then move cakes onto cooling rack. Make your frosting (below) and decorate as desired.
  8. For frosting, use an electric mixer to beat all the ingredients together until smooth.
  9. For decorations, knead a small amount of fondant until smooth and add green food coloring until you reach the desired green.
  10. Hand mold or use a cookie cutter to create desired shapes.
  11. Place on cake and enjoy!

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Aiya Matcha Monthly Radiation Test Report Available- March 2015

February 27th, 2015

D1-387 BLOG

The radiation test report is available for our March 2015 shipment.  It once again confirms that all of our Matcha and loose leaf teas are safe for consumption.  Copies available upon request.

Swirled Matcha Chocolate Muffins

February 3rd, 2015

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There’s just something about the smell of freshly baked muffins that makes me oh-so-happy. Nothing used to put me in a better mood than when I woke up to the sweet smell of my mother’s chocolate chip muffins. So when I was making the Matcha donuts last week, I had this brilliant idea that I’d modify Aiya’s Baked Matcha Donut recipe to try making some Swirled Matcha Chocolate muffins. And the result—was even more brilliant. The mildness of the Matcha and the smoothness of the Cocoa paired almost too harmoniously, with just the right amount of density that makes a muffin, a muffin. Whether you eat it for breakfast or even just as a mid-day snack, these yummy green tea flavored muffins won’t let you down. Here’s what you’ll need:

[Ingredients]

For the Matcha batter:

  • Flour of your choice…………………………………. 1.5 cups
  • Baking powder ……………………………………….. 2 tsp
  • Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha …………………….. 2 tbsp
  • Butter …………………………………………………….. 1/2 cup
  • Sugar of your choice ……………………………….. 3/4 cup
  • Egg ……………………………………………………….. 2 eggs
  • Milk (or alt milk of your choice) ………………. 2/3 cup

For the chocolate batter:

  • Flour of your choice ………………………………… 3/4 cup
  • Baking powder ……………………………………….. 1 tsp
  • Cocoa powder ………………………………………… 1 1/3 tbsp
  • Butter …………………………………………………….. 4 tbsp (1/4 cup)
  • Sugar of your choice ………………………………… 5 tbsp
  • Egg ………………………………………………………1 egg
  • Milk (or alt milk of your choice) ……………….. 1/3 cup

**NOTE: This recipe is geared more toward Japanese tastes, which is usually not very sweet. For sweeter muffins, increase the amount of sugar, or use sweetened almond/soy milk.

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[Directions]

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Sift the flour, baking powder, and Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha together and set aside.
  3. Allow the butter to come to room temperature and whisk it until it is smooth and creamy.
  4. Whisk the sugar into the butter until it is well incorporated.
  5. Beat the egg and whisk it into the butter mixture little by little until it is well incorporated.
  6. Add the milk into the sifted dry ingredients, mix gently, and add the butter mixture. (mix the milk and dry ingredients for a maximum of 15 seconds; if you mix it too much, it makes it harder to add in the butter/sugar mixture)
  7. Repeat steps 1-6 for the chocolate batter mix.
  8. Transfer the Matcha batter and the chocolate batter into separate piping bags.(A Ziploc bag works perfectly. Just cut a small hole on one corner after transfering batter)
  9. Coat the cupcake/muffin tins lightly with butter (or oil).
  10. Pipe in 1 layer of Matcha batter, then 1 layer of chocolate batter, and top off with a small amount of Matcha batter on top.
  11. Take a toothpick and swirl contents until batter looks marbled.
  12. Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes, then lower the temperature to 325 degrees, and bake for approximately 6 more minutes.
  13. Stick a tooth pick in the center of the muffin. If toothpick comes out clean, your muffin is done.

Makes 12-15 muffins. Enjoy!

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Baked Matcha Donuts

January 30th, 2015

Enjoy!

This week on the blog, I tried re-creating another one of Aiya’s original recipes—the baked Matcha donuts using Aiya’s Cooking Grade Matcha.  I wanted to try this recipe because although I love donuts in general, they’re not exactly the healthiest thing you can put into your body. So naturally when I saw “baked” in the title, I knew I had to try it. Since I always catch myself craving sweets when I’m tired, having a healthier alternative to a normal donut (especially one with an L-theanine rich, natural energy boosting ingredient in the recipe) would make for the perfect pick me up.  The results were even more satisfying than I had imagined—6 beautiful jade green donuts with the perfect amount of fluffy and just the right amount of moist. I had one, and then another, and found myself coming back for more. And the best part of this donut is that it’s pretty much guilt free. So go ahead, have a couple, and maybe some more; you won’t regret it.

The way I made the donuts weren’t exactly as instructed on our original recipe (which you can find here). The original recipe calls for rice flour, but I decided to use regular flour since that’s probably what most people have in their homes, and it even mentions on the recipe that rice flour may be harder to find. I also made 2 batches with 2 different types of milk, mainly because I realized that I had forgotten to grab milk at the store, but then came back to a fridge full of milk alternatives, and thought, hey, this may be even better: almond milk for those who prefer non dairy and heavy whipping cream for a richer donut. They both worked very well. I also omitted putting sweetened azuki beans into the donuts to leave room for your imagination. Here’s what you’ll need:

[Ingredients]

  • Rice Flour (or flour of your choice) ……………………………….. 3/4 cup
  • Baking Powder…………………………………………………………… 1 tsp
  • Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha……………………………………….. 1 tbsp
  • Butter……………………………………………………………………….. 3 1/3 tbsp
  • Sugar of your choice……………………………………………………. 4 tbsp
  • Egg…………………………………………………………………………… 1 egg
  • Milk (or alt milk of your choice) ……………………………………… 1/4 cup
  • Sweetened Azuki Beans (or other topping/filling) …………….. 3 tbsp
  • Donut mold or any circular mold
  • **NOTE: This donut recipe is geared more toward Japanese tastes, which is usually not very sweet. For a sweeter donut, increase the amount of sugar to 5 tbsp.

[Directions]

  1. Sift the flour, baking powder, and Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha together and set aside.
  2. Begin pre-heating your oven to 350 degrees. (I did this first)
  3. Allow the butter to come to room temperature and stir it until it is smooth and creamy. (A fork works well)
  4. Whisk the sugar into the butter until it is well incorporated and the whole mixture takes on a white color.
  5. Beat the egg and add it in little by little until it is well incorporated.
  6. Add the milk into the sifted dry ingredients, mix gently, and then add the butter and sugar. (Mix the milk and the dry ingredients for a maximum of 15 seconds; if you mix it too much, it makes it harder to add in the butter/sugar mixture)
  7. Transfer the batter to a piping bag. (A Ziploc bag works perfectly. Just cut a small hole on one corner after transferring batter)
  8. Using a donut mold (or any circular mold you like), place 3-4 azuki beans into each mold and then pipe the batter over them. (or any filling, such as white chocolate chips or nuts)
  9. Bake in the oven for 12 minutes, then lower the temperature to 325 degrees, and bake for approximately 5 more minutes.

I also made my own frosting with 3/4 cup powdered sugar and just a tad bit of water. Then used the frosting as the glue to add on some cute Valentine’s Day appropriate pink sprinkles. The possibilities are endless for this versatile little donut because you can change up the type of flour, the type of milk, the toppings and even the things you put inside it. Since Matcha has a naturally mild flavor, it mixes well with so many flavors, such as chocolate, nuts, and fruits. And that just makes it that much more tempting to try your own versions at home. Overall a delightful experience, and I would love to try making a Matcha white chocolate coconut donut, with coconut milk and a white chocolate glaze. Mmm. Happy Baking!

 

Aiya Matcha Monthly Radiation Test Report Available – February 2015

January 29th, 2015

_MG_2015

The radiation test report is available for our February 2015 shipment.  It once again confirms that all of our Matcha and loose leaf teas are safe for consumption.  Copies available upon request.

Aiya Matcha Monthly Radiation Test Report Available – January 2015

January 29th, 2015


_MG_2052

The radiation test report is available for our January 2015 shipment.  It once again confirms that all of our Matcha and loose leaf teas are safe for consumption.  Copies available upon request.

Aiya at the Winter Fancy Food Show 2015

January 22nd, 2015

Winter Fancy Food Show 2015 Recap

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Last weekend, the Aiya team flew out to beautiful San Francisco, CA for the annual Winter Fancy Food Show.  It was held at the Moscone Convention Center, which was only a short ten minute walk from our hotel.  Instead of renting a car this time, we walked to the show every day, taking in the crisp, chilly air and gorgeous scenery. With perfect weather and an amazing turn out, this show was definitely a great way to start out our exhibition at the 2015 trade shows.

Slightly resembling the Natural Products Expo East and geared more towards consumers and food service businesses, this show had lots of familiar exhibitors and products that could be readily found in local stores like Whole Foods or Target. There were many different types of products, from kale chips to flavored peanut butters to teas to flavored fudge. My favorite was definitely getting to try out all the different type of chips they had. From kale to lentil chips, to chips made with a method called “sprouting,” the market seems to be really expanding on new and healthier alternatives to fried potato chips.

At this show, we sampled out three different drinks: the ever popular Matcha Latte made using Aiya’s Matcha Zen Café Blend and unsweetened vanilla almond milk; our iced Matcha tea using Aiya’s Matcha to Go Sticks; and our hot traditional Matcha Tea, using our Ceremonial Matcha.  All of our samples were greeted with warm compliments and praises, and even some surprised faces. Some mentioned our Matcha lattes were “unexpectedly delicious,” while others mentioned that it “tastes like green tea ice cream.” Many were surprised to learn about the different grades of Matcha, and that Matcha is what is used to flavor green tea flavored desserts.

What was interesting about this show was the increase in the amount of people who have heard of Matcha before.  Compared to our trade shows in 2014, so many more people came up to our booth with some sort of knowledge of Matcha. Part of this may be attributed to the large amount of coverage Matcha has been getting in the media since the end of 2014. Since then, Matcha has exploded in popularity everywhere, popping up in grocery stores and being covered on television and in magazines. But it’s no surprise to us; it was about time that something so delicious, versatile, and healthy started gaining popularity.

Overall, this show went very well; we had tons of different attendees stopping by and trying out our products. What a great show this was, getting to meet new people and nurture relationships with many of our existing customers and others whom we work with every day. It’s always nice to put a face to the voice on the phone or the text in the emails.

Simple Matcha Pancakes

January 15th, 2015

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Pancakes, one of the most well known breakfast foods here in the US, are also one of the most versatile. Though we’ve seen many different flavors and toppings, we haven’t seen much green tea flavored pancakes. No worries though, with this easy recipe, you could make your own fluffy, delicious Matcha pancakes.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp Aiya’s Cooking Grade Matcha
  • 150 grams pancake mix
  • 100 milliliters milk
  • Toppings of your choice

Directions:

  1. Mix together Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha with pancake mix.
  2. Add in milk and mix until smooth.
  3. Lightly coat a small pan with oil and put on low heat.
  4. Ladle in one scoop of Matcha pancake mix and shape pancake with the bottom of the ladle.
  5. Let pancake mix sit until you see small bubbles appear on the top.
  6. Slowly flip pancake over and let sit until middle of the pancake feels “fluffy.” The pancake should feel dense when not cooked.
  7. Top with your favorite toppings, and enjoy!

Voila! Perfect Matcha Pancakes in just minutes.

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New Year’s Matcha Marshmallow Wands

December 19th, 2014

 

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As the hustle and bustle of Christmas almost comes to a close, we must start planning for yet another celebration– New Year’s. Here’s a simple yet adorable (and definitely New Year’s worthy) recipe that goes hand in hand with the sparkle and glam of the brand new year. Featuring Aiya’s Cooking Grade Matcha, this glittery Matcha Marshmallow wand gives the traditional marshmallow a pleasant twist. The soft, fluffy texture pairs almost too perfectly with the mild tea taste of Matcha, and the edible glitter gives it a beautiful sparkle. We’ve been hearing that Matcha is the #1 predicted trending food for 2015, so hop on the trend early and impress your friends with this delicious Matcha dessert! Happy New Year’s!

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Note: This recipe requires a stand mixer. This recipe was adapted from Aiya’s Matcha Marshmallows.

[Ingredients]

  • 2 tbsp Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha
  • Lukewarm water as needed
  • 3 packets of unflavored gelatin
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1.5 cups sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup corn starch
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • Edible Glitter (silver or gold)
  • Star cookie cutter
  • lollipop sticks

[Directions]

  1. Pour the 3 packets of gelatin and 1/2 cup of the cold water into the bowl of your stand mixer and allow it to absorb into the water. This is called “blooming” the gelatin. Affix the whisk attachment to your mixer.
  2. In a saucepan, add the remaining 1/2 cup water, sugar, salt, and corn syrup. Place over medium heat and cook, covered, for 3-4 minutes. Uncover and allow to cook for another 8-9 minutes until the syrup reaches 240 degrees F. Remove from heat.
  3. Turn your stand mixer on low to mix the bloomed gelatin around.
  4. Slowly stream the hot syrup into the stand mixer, being careful to not pour it directly onto the gelatin but instead down the side of them mixing bowl.
  5. Once syrup is added, slowly and carefully turn the mixer up to high and allow it to mix for 15-20 minutes. The longer you let it mix, the firmer the finished marshmallows will be.
  6. Sift Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha into a bowl and then mix in some hot water with a Matcha whisk or the back of a spoon until it is smooth with no lumps. Stream the dissolved Matcha into the marshmallow mix during the final minute of mixing.
    1. NOTE: Don’t put too much hot water into the Matcha, or your marshmallows may come out too soft.
  7. Mix the corn starch and powdered sugar together. Lightly spray a baking pan with cooking spray and then add in the corn starch mixture. Tilt the pan until evenly coated. Remove excess and save it for later.
  8. Pour the finished marshmallow batter into the pan and allow it to sit for at least 4 hours.
  9. Once done, carefully cut with star shaped cookie cutters.
  10. Place the cut marshmallows on a lollipop stick.
  11. Slightly dampen the surface of the marshmallow if it is not sticky. Powder on edible glitter however you’d like.
  12. Garnish however you’d like and enjoy!

DIY Matcha Mason Jar Cookie Mix

December 17th, 2014

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There’s a lot to be excited about when it comes to the holidays– celebrating with loved ones, delicious food, presents, and the warm, fuzzy feeling this season evokes in us. Gift giving, though not most important, ranks high in importance during the holidays, and what better way to say “I love you” to your friends and loved ones than by making them something by hand? Here is a thoughtful holiday gift idea that is sure to put a smile on anyone you make this for–a DIY Matcha choco chip cookie mix in a mason jar featuring Aiya’s Cooking Grade Matcha! A perfect idea for tea lovers, bakers, and dessert lovers all around, we’ve even created a printable recipe to include in the gift.

For Mason Jar:

  • 14 tbsp flour
  • 2/3 tbsp Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 7 tbsp brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp chocolate chips

For the gift receiver:

  • 1 egg
  • 4 tbsp softened butter
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Pour cookie mix into larger bowl and mix.
  • Mix in egg, butter, and vanilla extract until soft dough forms.
  • Scoop into small 1-inch balls and place on baking sheet.
  • Bake for about 10 minutes, or until edges are slightly golden.
  • Remove from oven and enjoy!

Note: To create nice layers in the mason jar, pat down each layer with the back of a spoon to create a flat, even surface.

And there you have it- a simple yet thoughtful (and delicious) Christmas gift for all your loved ones! Layer, decorate and package the jar however you like, and don’t forget to include the recipe sheet! You can print the recipe sheet here, or hand write it on paper of your choice. Happy gifting!