Matcha Azuki: a match(a) made in heaven!

Japan is really fond of these little red beans called Azuki (Adzuki). They are grown all around East-Asia and are used a lot in in all types of foods, like hot dishes, soups, porridge, confectionery, etc. Most popular however is the sweetened Azuki paste called Anko, which turns out to go really well with Matcha.

Check out this really nice matcha cake with anko filling for example. Would you be able to resist it? Right 😉

Alas, a freshly prepared cake like this will be out of reach for many of us westerners. Unless you feel like paying $$$ to fly it across  oceans and continents in a couple of days.  Not the best of ideas indeed.

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Gifts from the land of Matcha

IMG_0659So what do you do when you have a sister-in-law that is studying Japanese in Sendai?

Ask to send over matcha goodies of course! 🙂

Very cool to receive a package from Japan! Must save the stamp. Also a slight feeling of decadence knowing a jet carried some sweets across half the globe for my enjoyment. Last but not least: why the hell did it take a month to arrive at my place?? Something I should look into further…

Enough of my ramblings. What did we get from MatchaClaus?

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Seeing as this blog is about  matcha, I will not spend too much time on the blue bag.  It contains big tea pouches and its used to make bottles of the stuff for every day consumption together with meals and what not. Although a bit smelly and coffee like (yikes), it is nice! But it is not matcha 😈

Over to the one on the right! Also known as the one that got devoured in 10 minutes. We’re talking about separately wrapped, matcha cream filled chocolates that are very hard to withstand.  They are produced by Kabaya.

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As a Belgian guy, I have access to the worlds best chocolate, but the critical me has to admit that the taste of this particular choclate was a bit bland. Although I enjoyed these treats and will gladly eat them again, I think I will be on the lookout for (better) alternatives.

Last but not least the matcha milk powder by Tsujiri! Tsujiri is one of the most famous green tea houses located in Kyoto, more specific the Uji area.

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The bag contains a combination of matcha & milk powder (and ofcourse lots of Sugar – something I hope to find alternatives for) which you can use with cold or hot water to produce a matcha milk drink. I for one have been experimenting with real milk or soy milk and like it like that also.

Although it was a long time since I tried some alternatives (matcha stick, nestle matcha latte, …) I think it is one of the best choices out there. To be sure though, I will be ordering them said alternatives pretty soon to write about it. Together with Kit Kat Matcha, Meiji biscuits, … and a lot more 🙂

Stay tuned! And share if you care!