Aiya at the Natural Products Expo West 2016

March 30th, 2016


With the beginning of spring came the annual Natural Products Expo West, one of the largest natural/organic trade shows on the west coast. Held at the familiar Anaheim convention center, this show spread out across two entire floors and into the Hilton hotel next door. Though this show has always been large, it seemed to have grown even more this year, with over 3000 exhibitors and 77,000 attendees (according to New Hope Media).

The first day of the show was busier than ever! Usually the first few hours of the show are slightly slower compared to the rest as attendees trickle down from the front hall to the back. However, we found ourselves making samples after samples and talking up a storm with curious attendees and familiar faces. At the show, we launched our newly gluten-free certified Matcha products. Though teas are naturally gluten free, we thought that this extra step would add assurance to those trying to follow a gluten free lifestyle or have gluten allergies/sensitivity. We weren’t surprised that many other companies had also jumped on the gluten-free certification train. As usual, we sampled out our Matcha lattes and Iced/hot Matchas, along with our Japanese green tea bags.

What we love about this show is that we get to preview new trends and products in the industry. A couple of the trends we noticed are: coconut water, nut milks and butters, and as mentioned above, gluten free products. Though coconut water and nut milk/butters are not necessarily new per se, these products seemed to be increasing in popularity and also variety- from a delicious coconut milk that is extracted without ever being exposed to light, to espresso and coconut flavored nut butters and caramel flavored cashew milks. Gluten-free products seemed to be even more popular this year, with more and more booths showcasing their certification (like us), to a section of the display cases dedicated to “gluten-free products.” Our favorite, though, has to go to the vegetarian meat booth that was stationed right across from us. They sampled out “meats” made with soy protein with a remarkable resemblance to its non-vegetarian counterpart. They even won an award for best new product.

The NPEW shows are always a great place to see new products or trends that are starting to pick up traction in the industry. Matcha has become so popular over the past year or so, that attendees barely ask us what it is anymore (such a big change compared to 2014). Matcha’s popularity doesn’t seem to be slowing any time soon, and we couldn’t be happier to be growing alongside such an influencial industry.

Mini Matcha Blackberry Cheesecakes (No-Bake)

March 17th, 2016

Matcha Blackberry Cheesecake 2f

Skip the oven and go straight to dessert with our No-Bake Mini Matcha Blackberry Cheesecakes! Easy to prepare, the Matcha filling is rich and velvety, and so yummy paired with a buttery graham cracker crust. Aiya’s Cooking Grade Matcha gives the cheesecake a slight earthiness, which perfectly complements the sweetness from the homemade blackberry jam. We adapted this recipe from our “No-Bake Matcha Cheesecake” recipe by adding an extra spoonful of sugar. With St. Patrick’s day today and summer berry season just around the corner, what more excuse do you need to whip up these sweet treats?



  • 7 oz graham crackers
  • 1 stick unsalted butter

Cheesecake Filling

  • 3 Tbsp water
  • 1 Tbsp gelatin
  • 5 1/2 oz cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha
  • 1 Tbsp sour cream
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

Whipped Cream

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 Tbsp sugar

Blackberry Jam

  • 2 cups fresh blackberries
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice


Blackberry Jam

  1. Wash and dry 2 cups of fresh blackberries and set aside.
  2. Mix 1 Tbsp cornstarch with 1 Tbsp lemon juice until a paste forms.
  3. Heat the sugar and blackberries over medium heat. Stir until blackberries break apart.
  4. Add the cornstarch lemon mixture to the pot until fully combined.
  5. Heat for an additional 3-5 minutes, or until the sauce starts to thicken.
  6. Remove from heat and place in the fridge to chill while you are making the cheesecake.

Mini Matcha Cheesecakes

  1. Crush the graham crackers into fine crumbs either by putting them in a zip top bag and crushing with a rolling pin or by pulsing in a food processor.
  2. Let the butter come to room temperature and then mix it with the graham cracker crumbs until they come together like dough. Allow to rest for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Grease the bottom and sides of one muffin/cupcake tin. Spoon one small ball of the graham cracker dough into muffin/cupcake tin, pressing them down with the bottom of a small cup, making it as level and even in thickness as possible.
  4. Sift the Matcha into a bowl and add some room temperature water (approximately 1 tbsp). Mix with the back of a spoon until it becomes a smooth paste.  Set aside.
  5. Using an electric hand mixer, beat the cream cheese until it is smooth. Add the sugar and mix until well incorporated. Add the Matcha paste, sour cream, and lemon juice.  Beat until smooth and well blended.
  6. Mix the gelatin in the 3 tablespoons of hot water until fully dissolved. Mix into the cream cheese mixture until fully incorporated.
  7. In a separate bowl, whip the heavy cream until it forms soft peaks. Gently fold into the cream cheese mixture.
  8. Spoon the finished cheesecake filling into the muffin/cupcake tins with the graham cracker crust, cover with plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator to set (30 minutes).
  9. Once set, carefully remove the cheesecakes from the tins by scraping down the sides with a sharp butter knife, then using a small rubber spatula to pop them out.
  10. Beat the heavy cream and sugar together until soft peaks form. Decorate your mini cheesecakes with whipped cream, blackberry jam, and fresh blackberries.
  11. Enjoy!

Matcha Blackberry Cheesecake 1c

Matcha Blackberry Cheesecake_product 1b

Matcha Blackberry Cheesecake 6a

Aiya Matcha Monthly Radiation Test Report – March 2016

March 3rd, 2016


The radiation test report is now available for our March 2016 shipment. It once again confirms that all of our Matcha and loose leaf teas are safe for consumption. Copies available upon request.

Valentine’s Day SALE 2016

February 10th, 2016

matcha valentine's day sale photo

Happy (almost) Valentine’s Day from all of us at Aiya! To celebrate, we are having a sale on our Cooking Grade Matcha and our Organic Cooking Grade Matcha from now until Friday, February 19th as a thanks for your continued support! We love the idea of putting a twist on classic V-Day recipes by using some Matcha.  Click here to see our first ever recipe dedicated to this holiday, and make sure to take advantage of this sale to make your own treats. Codes below:


Get 20% off Cooking Grade Matcha/Organic Cooking Grade Matcha 100g bags with the code “valentines” at checkout.*


Get 10% off Cooking Grade Matcha/Organic Cooking Grade Matcha 100g bags with code “valentinesWH” at checkout.”


*Discount only valid on the Cooking Grade Matcha 100g bags and the Organic Cooking Grade Matcha 100g bags purchased through our consumer and wholesale online stores respectively. Please note that this discount codes do not apply to our 1kg sizes. Orders must be placed online between 12:00 am on Wednesday, February 10th, 2016 and 11:59 pm PST on Friday, February 19th, 2016 to qualify. This promotion cannot be combined with other existing promotions. Aiya reserves the right to change the terms of or terminate this promotion without prior notice. 


Valentine’s Day: Matcha White Chocolate Covered Strawberries

February 9th, 2016

Matcha Chocolate Strawberries 1

It’s almost Valentine’s Day and love is in the air! To celebrate, we created our first ever V-Day recipe – Matcha White Chocolate Covered Strawberries – featuring Aiya’s Cooking Grade Matcha. (get Cooking Grade Matcha on SALE for a limited time; codes here) Sweet and chocolate-y with a hint of tartness, these handmade treats will surely make your Valentine’s Day special this year.


  • 20-25 strawberries
  • 6 oz. white chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1.5 tsp Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha
  • 2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • Chocolate sprinkles (or other toppings) as desired


  1. Thoroughly wash and dry the strawberries and place them in the fridge.
  2. Finely chop the white chocolate and place in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 1 minute, stir, and microwave again for 20 seconds. If the chocolate has not melted, continue microwaving in 10 second increments until completely melted.
  3. Sift the Matcha over the melted white chocolate and stir until combined.
  4. Take the strawberries out of the fridge. Make sure each strawberry is completely dry before dipping it into the chocolate.
  5. Gently hold the leaves of the strawberries and dip each into the Matcha chocolate 2/3rds of the way, twirling the strawberry to get an even coat.
  6. Dip into your desired toppings and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Leave some strawberries with no toppings for the chocolate drizzle.
  7. Chill the strawberries in the fridge for 8-10 minutes or until firm.
  8. For the semi-sweet chocolate drizzle: microwave the chocolate for 45 seconds, stir, then microwave for another 15 seconds. If not completely melted, continue microwaving in 10 second increments until fully melted. Using a fork, lightly drizzle the chocolate onto the strawberries.
  9. Chill in the freezer for another 8 minutes or until firm.
  10. Share and enjoy! :- )

Matcha Chocolate Strawberries 6 e

Matcha Chocolate Strawberries 2 c

Matcha Chocolate Strawberries 9 b

Aiya at the Winter Fancy Food Show 2016

February 4th, 2016


Our 2016 trade show year began at the end of January with our exhibition at the annual Winter Fancy Food Show. Held in San Francisco at the Moscone Convention Center only a short distance away from our hotel, the show was exciting, busy, and filled with unique specialty food vendors from all over the world.

The traffic at the show was incredible – much busier than any of our past Fancy Food Shows – with lots of new booths showcasing innovative products. Among the most unique foods we saw were chips made with bug (cricket) protein and a guava jam block paired with cheddar cheese. The bug chips were surprisingly delicious, and the guava-jam pairing was the best we’ve ever tasted! There were even separate sections representing foods and drinks from different states and countries. We love that this show has so much to explore.

At the show, we successfully launched our new Premium and Ceremonial grades of Matcha, both now endorsed by the Tea Master of the prestigious Urasenke Tea School in Japan. We made the switch because currently there are no government regulations in the US for Matcha quality, which can allow for low quality/non-authentic Matcha grades to be sold as higher grades. We hope that by having this endorsement, consumers will be able to purchase our Matcha with confidence in its authenticity and quality. (Read more on our switch here.) Along with our new Urasenke Matcha, we gave out samples of our new organic Japanese green tea bags, along with our classic iced Matcha lattes and iced Matcha To Go. We were happy to see many of the attendees stopping by every day, and sometimes even multiple times a day for their Matcha fix.

This show was our busiest among past Fancy Food Shows, and it was also a great show for Matcha in general. While we have seen more and more people becoming familiar with Matcha, it seems like Matcha’s popularity has grown even further. We heard more “I LOVE Matcha!” and “I drink Matcha all the time!” than we’ve ever heard before at any show. We love that Matcha is such a trending product now. It’s crazy to see how far Matcha has come since 2014 when it first started trending, and we hope it will keep growing in 2016.

Next up, the Natural Products Expo in Anaheim- see you all then!

Aiya Matcha Monthly Radiation Test Report – February 2016

February 4th, 2016

How It's Made- small

The radiation test report is now available for our February 2016 shipment.  It once again confirms that all of our Matcha and loose leaf teas are safe for consumption. Copies available upon request.

Baked Matcha Earl Grey Donuts with Fruity Pebbles

January 14th, 2016

Matcha Earl Grey Donuts 2 b

Baked donuts are one of our favorite recipes to work with- not only are they a healthier version to their fried counterparts, but the possibilities for flavors and toppings are almost endless! For this donut recipe, we paired two of our favorite tea flavors- Matcha and earl grey- to create soft, fluffy donuts that are packed full of flavor. The two tea flavors pair surprisingly well, and the fruity pebble topping adds a nice fruity crunch. Feel free to modify and experiment with different flavors and toppings- we’re sure you won’t regret it. Happy baking!

Makes 12 Donuts


Matcha Donuts

  • 1.5 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 Tbsp Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha
  • 1 stick butter (8 Tbsp)
  • 8 Tbsp sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup soy milk or almond milk

Earl Grey Ganache

  • 4 oz. white chocolate
  • 3.5- 4 Tbsp heavy cream
  • 1 earl grey tea bag (2 for a stronger ganache)
  • Fruity Pebbles (to top)



  1. Sift the flour, baking powder, and Matcha together and set aside.
  2. Allow the butter to come to room temperature and stir until it is smooth and creamy.
  3. Whisk the sugar into the butter until it is well incorporated and the whole mixture takes on a white color.
  4. Beat the egg and add it in little by little until it is well incorporated.
  5. Begin pre-heating your oven to 350F.
  6. Add the milk into the sifted dry ingredients, mix gently, and then add the butter and sugar.
  7. Transfer the batter to a piping bag. If you do not have a piping bag, you can also use a large gallon Ziploc bag and cut off a small portion of the corner.
  8. Pipe out the donut batter into greased donut molds and tap lightly on the counter to get rid of air bubbles and to flatten the batter. Do not overflow the molds, as the batter will rise.
  9. Bake in the oven for 11-12 minutes, lower the temperature to 325F, and bake for another 5 minutes.
  10. Let the donuts completely cool in their trays before transferring over to a work space.


  1. Chop the white chocolate into small pieces and place in a bowl.
  2. Pour the heavy cream into a small pot over low heat.
  3. Add the tea bag and stir the cream until it is lightly simmering. (about 2-3 minutes)
  4. Keep the tea steeped for another 30 seconds, then pour the earl grey cream mixture over the chopped white chocolate.
  5. Stir the mixture until the chocolate is melted. If the chocolate doesn’t melt completely, heat the mixture in the microwave for 15-20 seconds, and stir again.
  6. Let the ganache cool slightly.


  1. Carefully spoon the ganache onto the cooled donut and spread around until the top is coated.
  2. Take a small pinch of Fruity Pebble cereal, crush between fingers, and sprinkle onto the ganache immediately. Sprinkle some uncrushed cereal pieces to add more texture if desired. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to solidify the ganache.
  3. Once the ganache has hardened, take out of the fridge and enjoy!

Matcha Earl Grey Donuts 3 a

Matcha Earl Grey Donuts 14 a

Matcha Earl Grey Donuts 10 b

Matcha Earl Grey Donuts 6 a new

Matcha Earl Grey Donuts 4 a

Matcha Earl Grey Donuts 9 a

Aiya Matcha Monthly Radiation Test Report – January 2016

January 4th, 2016

jan radiation 2016

Happy New Year! The radiation test report is now available for our January 2016 shipment.  It once again confirms that all of our Matcha and loose leaf teas are safe for consumption. Copies available upon request.


Christmas Inspired: Matcha Macarons

December 17th, 2015

matcha macaron 4 e

matcha macaron 2 c

With less than ten days left until Christmas, many of us may still be on the hunt for those simple yet thoughtful last minute gifts. This year, instead of searching in stores or online, why not make something instead?  These Matcha macarons are not only beautiful and delicate, but they also have a stunning green hue and a mild, unique flavor. We’re sure many of you have heard of macarons being temperamental and difficult to make. Though those statements may be true, we found that they’re not so difficult to make with a little patience and love (and our tips and tricks below).


Matcha Macaron Shells

  • 1 Tbsp Aiya Cooking Grade Matcha
  • 3/4 cup + 2 Tbsp almond flour
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 egg whites at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg white at room temperature

Vanilla Buttercream

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 stick unsalted butter; room temperature and soft
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Blend the almond flour, Matcha and powdered sugar in a food processor until the almond flour is very fine. If you do not have a food processor, sift the almond flour until only the larger pieces remain in the sifter. Measure the amount of large almond pieces using a tablespoon (should be about 4-5 Tbsp), and set aside. Re-sift that same amount until the larger pieces remain again. Repeat one more time. The larger pieces left in the sifter during the last run can be mixed back into the almond flour mixture. Then, sift the almond flour together with the Matcha and powdered sugar.
  2. Meringue: Using an electric mixer, beat the 2 egg whites (make sure they are at room temperature) on low until tiny bubbles cover the surface. Turn your mixer on medium and add in the granulated sugar little by little. The bubbles should be gone, and the entire mixture should be shiny, white and smooth. Once incorporated, turn the mixer on high and beat until stiff peaks form.
  3. Mix the remaining egg white into the almond flour mixture until it forms a very thick paste.
  4. Once incorporated, gently fold in the meringue until well incorporated. This shouldn’t take more than 25-30 folds (try not to over mix- this will deflate the meringue).
  5. Once the mixture has taken on a very thick and gooey texture, transfer to a piping bag. We found it helpful to only fill the piping bag half way, because this batter can get very messy and sticky. If you need to put the piping bag down, put it back in the bowl with the batter. The batter is very gooey and will spill out.
  6. Pre-heat the oven to 325F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  7. Pipe small circles onto the parchment paper, about an inch apart, trying to make the circles as even as possible. You can even make shapes by using a slightly smaller opening for your piping bag (we tried making Christmas trees).
  8. Slam the baking sheet down on the counter a couple of times to release any air bubbles that may have been trapped in the batter. Then, leave the baking sheets out until the macaron shells are dry and their tops are no longer shiny (about 45 minutes). The shells should be dry to the touch, and not sticky.
  9. While the shells are drying, make the vanilla buttercream frosting. Using an electric mixer, mix the powdered sugar, butter, and vanilla extract until smooth.
  10. Once the shells are dried, bake them for about 16-18 minutes, until the tops are firm and “feet” have formed at the bottom. If you have two baking sheets, bake them one at a time.
  11. Let them cool completely on their trays. Taking them off before they dry may result in the bottom getting stuck to the parchment paper.
  12. Once they are completely cooled, very carefully remove the shells, lifting up around the sides until the shells pop off.
  13. Transfer the vanilla buttercream filling into a piping bag and pipe a small amount onto the flat side of a shell. Find another shell most similar in size and sandwich them together. Repeat with other shells. The shells are very delicate, so make sure not to put too much pressure when assembling them.
  14. Decorate however you like, wrap with baker’s twine, take photos, and give as gifts :- ) Happy Holidays!

*We used a vanilla buttercream filling, but you can fill with whatever you desire. We think a strawberry, raspberry, or black sesame buttercream would go great with the Matcha macaron too!

matcha macaron 3 b

matcha macaron 6 b

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