Japan producing delicacies out of green tea
Tokyo [Japan], Sept. 15 : Japan is now producing delicacies out good quality green tea. It is used as an ingredient in delicacies at Harajuku, at the centre of Tokyo city. The Matcha flavor delicacies attract youth and foreign tourists.
A visitor from Taiwan said, "Very delicious! Full of Matcha flavor, the texture is extremely smooth."
Sweets are made with Matcha, a finely ground powder of specially grown and processed green tea. By mixing matcha powder into ice cream or cake, the combination of bitter flavors and sweet tastes brings out the flavor.
The sweets made of matcha are popular among females.
A visitor to Harajuku said, "Not too bitter, not too sweet. It's right on."
Another visitor said, "With the flavor of shaved ice imbued into it, it's very delicious.
Asami Oda of the Oyaizu Seicha International Japanese Tea Co., Ltd said, "The concept of this product is Wa (Harmony), inheriting the tea culture in Shizuoka Prefecture, and making it in a form of 'Wagouri' (Japanese iced sweets). That is how this Japanese-style ice cream product was created. We think it's very Japanese."
The first company which used tea in sweets was Gashoan, a tea and cake maker with stores located in Shizuoka, the home of tea.
The company is producing and selling shortbread and baumkuchen.
The popular product of Matcha Baumkuchen is baked after wrapping the ingredients created by mixing wheat flour with Matcha powder onto the mold.
Matcha has a clear green color. It's said that it takes effort to create this color.
It is wrapped about 20 times, organizing the shape and baking until browned.
It takes about one hour until it is baked.
Takeshi Ishihara of the Oyaizu Seicha International Japanese Tea Co., Ltd said, "Our matcha is from Shizuoka prefecture. The green color is very bright. A cake balanced with bitter and sweet tastes uses baumkuchen and fresh cream. Drinking tea has been known as healthy. The melting look of the tea and the relieved feeling you experience after drinking it made it very popular in Japan. We look forward to have our overseas guests enjoy the green tea , especially matcha, which has a long history, feel the peacefulness and get a taste of Japanese culture."
Enjoying tea has formed a unique culture in Japan in the 800 years since it was introduced to the country.
The proper way to drink tea is to put tea leaves into a teapot, pouring boiling water in and enjoy.
In order to tastefully savor the tea, you need to have fine quality tea leaves, water and a tea set.
Aichi Prefecture's Tokoname City is known for making teapots. In this city, craftsmen make teapots in sections.
Workers melt soil and place the materials into the molds of each section. The mold absorbs moisture and hardens.
The product will be taken out when it stiffens.
The next step is to install each individual part, such as the spout, handle, lid, etc. Everything is handmade.
Occasionally, only one craftsman is in charge of the entire process of making a teapot.
This craftsman is making the shape of a teapot with his hands using only the soil, but not using a mold.
Spinning the wheel not only sharpens the senses, but also fine-tunes the shape and thickness of various parts of the teapot with the fingers.
Kazufusa Kato, a tea pot maker, "Every teapot is handmade whether it's molded or cast with a wheel. Just like someone's kids, we hope to make something with love and confidence. The handle is made five millimeters longer and the angles for the handle and spout also are being adjusted two to three times. The most difficult part is that since the material is natural soil, there is no other industry making products as primitive as pottery making. Every teapot is made with mountain soil whether it was made in the past or made recently. Its availability, colors, and the fineness of the soil varies. That is the most difficult and challenging part.
The teapots from Tokoname really bring out the flavor of the tea. (ANI)