Matcha is a powdered extract of green tea that the Japanese have historically consumed as an integral part of their daily diet. Matcha powder contains the entire spectrum of vitamins and nutrients in green tea leaves - in much higher concentration than in non-matcha products. It contains ten times more antioxidants than regular green tea and black tea, meaning drinking it regularly can help reduce your risk for cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
The two most popular matcha green tea grades are ceremonial matcha and culinary matcha grades. Ceremonial matcha has a deep golden-brown color and a robust vegetal aroma. Ceremonial grade matcha powder is more flavorful but also more costly than the other grades because it has reduced bitterness and an increased concentration of amino acids. These properties make ceremonial grade better for drinking at higher temperatures or as a dessert ingredient.
Culinary Matcha, on the other hand, has a higher antioxidant level than ceremonial grade. It has a slightly bitter taste and is often mixed with other ingredients when baking to make matcha cookies or smoothies. Its color is a less vibrant green than that of ceremonial matcha and has a soft texture with a smell of fresh grass. These properties make culinary matcha the appropriate grade for making the best matcha cookies. We had so much fun making this matcha cookie recipe, and found it such a simple way to incorporate matcha powder into a delicious sweet treat!
The Best Matcha for Baking
The best grade to use for your baking needs is culinary grade matcha. The bold taste mixes well with other ingredients and is perfect for making the best matcha cookies, smoothies, and lattes. It is also half as costly as the ceremonial grade. This recipe utilizes Encha culinary grade matcha, which you can find online or through Amazon.
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Before using this matcha recipe to make cookies, I recommend getting a kitchen scale with metric units.
- 15g matcha green tea powder (for all my matcha recipes, I use Encha Matcha culinary powder)
- Two egg yolks at room temperature
- 0.18g table salt
- 140g powdered sugar
- 185g softened unsalted butter at room temperature
- 256g plain flour (256g is equivalent to 2 cups)
- 85g white chocolate chunks
Part 1: Mix the Ingredients
- Put the matcha green tea powder and plain flour together in one container and sieve the mixture into a large bowl.
- Place the softened unsalted butter in a large bowl, and beat it until smooth and creamy using a mixer. You can soften the butter by letting it sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
- Add table salt and mix.
- Add the sugar and beat vigorously until soft and light.
- Add the egg yolks and stir until you get a uniform mixture
- Add the flour and mix. I add the flour in bits and ensure the mixture is thoroughly combined before adding another bit.
- Add the white chocolate chips and stir.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator for chilling.
Part 2: Rolling and Baking
- Preheat your oven to 170oC (340F)
- Fetch your chilled cookie dough from the refrigerator and cut it into 20 equal dough balls, with each ball weighing around 55g. The dough may be hard due to chilling, in which case you should expose it to room temperature for about 5 minutes. The cookies don't set up enough to bake until the following day, so they can be made with chilled dough that's been rolled and cut into shapes and some shaped dough that's been frozen. Although you can bake the cookies directly from the freezer, it's best to allow them to warm up a little first to ensure proper texture.
- Place the cookies 1 inch apart in a baking tray
- Bake them until their edges start turning brown
- Take them out of the oven and leave them on the baking sheet for about 7 minutes. This allows them to cool a little before you can transfer them to a cooling rack for complete cooling.
Part 3: Storage
Before putting your matcha green tea cookies in the freezer, you should butter and flour the cookie jar. This will ensure that the cookies won't stick to the box as much. Your cookies will taste better if you warm them up slightly before eating.
I used this Matcha recipe to make the best cookies for my family. I had tried various matcha cookie recipes before but none produced cookies as good as this one. They were delicious, healthy, and perfect for everyone. My family could not have enough of it, and they kept asking for more. So I plan to make them for Christmas, Easter, and any parties we may have during the year.
Tips to Improve Your Baking Experience
- It is crucial that you let the dough chill to be able to roll it out. The best way to do this is on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, as this prevents your cookie dough from sticking to your hand. Chilling promotes a uniform spread of liquid in the dough, which causes the cookies to bake more evenly. It lowers the dough's temperature to appropriate levels that support the slow melting of the butter. Fast melting of butter causes overspreading of cookies when baking. Also, don't forget that you must cool the dough before squeezing it into the mold.
- If your matcha cookies are overspreading, it's probably because your butter isn't being mixed in enough flour, you didn't let your dough chill long enough, or you let your butter heat too much while mixing your ingredients. If you notice the cookies spreading out too much, bring them out of the oven and push them back to the center. Return them to the oven and wait for them to finish baking. You can also try baking them on parchment paper or using air holes and increase their height and reduce their width.
- The best matcha cookies spread a little due to the use of butter, but if you find that your cookies are not spreading even after they are completely baked, it is probably because you added too much flour into your butter. Try reducing it next time.
- Matcha cookies are a little more delicate than your usual ones, so they should be spread with a clean, wet finger before putting them on the baking sheet.
- Sometimes you may notice the whole matcha cookie turning brown instead of just the edges turning. This is probably because your baking sheets are too dark in color. To prevent excessive browning, line the sheets with parchment paper or mat, or reduce the baking temperature.
- To ensure no clumps form in your dough and that your cookies have a uniform green color, make sure to sieve the matcha powder before use.
- Get yourself an oven thermometer. Temperature readings on the oven dials are often inaccurate. They can show temperatures up to 40 degrees lower than the actual temperature. Oven thermometers are essential kitchen tools because they provide the most accurate temperature readings possible. You can use a regular oven thermometer to check heat levels in a 500-degree oven. As soon as you open the oven door and insert this thermometer into your muffin pan or cookie sheet, you will be able to see if your oven is at the perfect temperature to bake your cake or cookies. You can find high-quality oven thermometers at most kitchenware stores today.