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matcha

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Adaptogenic Iced Matcha Latte

icedmatchalatte

I am not always a trend follower when it comes to all the fancy powders and potions in the world of wellness but as someone who has been looking for a less filling but sustaining breakfast to suit my get-up-and-go lifestyle of late (a-la bulletproof coffee) I decided to jump on the super-food fortified beverage bandwagon.

adaptogenicmatchalatte
adaptogenicmatchalatte

This creamy, earthy, sustaining iced matcha latte is packed with all the things that make me feel my best plus a few new additions that I am still experimenting with. I love it because if I drink it in the morning before I run off to teach yoga it keeps me full and full of energy well after class without weighing me down (and if you practice hot yoga, you know how important that is). As always I encourage you to make this recipe your own - if you don't have all the superfoods I list below use what you have, what you know makes you feel your best, or heck, skip them all together - because as I say, " all plant foods are superfoods.".

Here's what I've got goin' on:

Matcha Green Tea Powder: Clean caffeine and rich in antioxidants. Unlike coffee, the energy you get from matcha is a slow build rather than a buzz. In my own personal experience I do feel better after drinking high quality matcha vs. coffee; it feels more "natural" and less intense.

TBH, matcha was never my favorite flavor but I've been enjoying baking with it lately (check out my matcha tea cake and matcha pancakes) so I decided to try my darnedest to make a delicious drink - and I hit it out of the park with this, if I do say so myself. I am not sure how lovely this would taste hot but I really enjoy it as a cold beverage.

MTC or Coconut Oil: MTC or medium-chain triglycerides is a type of fatty-acid most commonly found in coconut oil that helps to sustain energy and control hunger. Now, if you follow my blog you'll know I am not a huge fan of processed/refined foods - and yea, if you didn't know, oils are just that! I was interested in experimenting with MTC oil as I work to balance my hormones due to some long term symptoms I've been experiencing - more on that in a future post - but I do love how rich and creamy the oil makes this drink plus it adds a hit of calories which is what helps to keep me full. Due to the link between oils like this and certain popular means of weight loss I do want to say: I think the 'keto' diet  is absolutely absurd - you can't restrict an entire macronutrient group and expect to gain any long term benefits. Just eat real food. 

Ashwagandha Powder: This was another thing I incorporated into my diet in an attempt to balance out my hormones and reduce my bodies reactions to stress. It is relatively flavorless so it doesn't add anything there but I do love it's supposed benefits which include...

  • Supports a healthy immune system*1, 2
  • Calms mental processes*2
  • Fosters healthy sleep patterns*1
  • Benefits a healthy reproductive system in both males and females*3, 4
  • Supports sustained energy levels, strength, and vitality, including with physical activity*
  • Supports a healthy back and joints*3
  • Promotes thyroid health*
  • Promotes healthy functioning of the adrenals*

*info from Banyan botanicals

My personal jury is still out on if ashwagandha is helping any or if it's more of a placebo but with roots in ayruveda (a yogi's healthcare system of choice) I like to think it is.

Maca Powder: The yin to ashwagandha's yang. It's an adaptogen meaning it can help the body naturally adapt to stressors like a busy schedule, demanding job or illness. This root like vegetable in powder form is one of the most popular superfoods around and it's no wonder why with benefits like enhanced energy, mood, memory and it's help in boosting female and male sex hormones.

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As noted above, please take away or add anything you feel would make this latte something that feels good in your body - there's plenty of adaptogenic powders and superfood potions out there now and a recipe like this is a great way to experiment with them to see how/if they benefit you!


Makes: One 16oz. serving (or two 8oz. servings) • Prep Time: 5 minutes


Ingredients

  • 14-16 oz. unsweetened plant based milk (I used almond)
  • 1.5 tsp. ceremonial grade matcha powder
  • 1 tsp. MTC oil or coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp. ashwaganda powder (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp. maca powder (optional)
  • Sweetener to taste (I used a bit of liquid stevia but maple syrup or agave are both great additions)
  • Dash of cinnamon, turmeric, cardamom or adaptogenic superfood powder (optional)
  • 4-6 ice cubes

Pro-Tip: For a slightly less filling beverage, you can cut the amount of plant based milk in half and sub water - the result will be slightly less creamy but still delicious.


Combine all of the ingredients in a blender, except for the ice and combine on high until well combined and frothy - apx. 30 seconds. 

Add ice cubes to a glass and pour your latte over- you should have a nice layer of foam at the top. Enjoy slowly!

 

LOVE THROUGH FOOD, LIVECLEAN KITCHEN

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Matcha Coconut Sponge Cake with Chocolate Ganache

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Matcha Coconut Sponge Cake with Chocolate Ganache

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Light, fluffy, moist and just the slightest bit sweet. A double entendre of sorts - a tea cake, made of good-for-you green tea! This traditional Brit-inspired springy, spongey cake is perfect with your 'cuppa' - enjoyed morning, noon, or night and it get's it special texture from a super unique ingredient! The thinnest layer of chocolate ganache and earthy green tea make the flavor profile light, earthy and refreshing.

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This is the vegan cake for people who don't like vegan cake. For people like my dad - who usually has an initially adverse reaction to anything I bake. He often takes a bite and says "it's nice, but you can tell it's vegan.", to which I usually reply, "good!"...I mean, that's kinda the point. But I know what he means, vegan baked goods tend be to slightly dense and more moist due to the omission of eggs. But, no sir, not this cake! This cake is light and fluffy and rises pretty high thanks to the use of baking soda, baking powder, self rising flour AND whipped aquafaba - the magical liquid found in your lowly can of chic peas. If you want to know more about this wonder-liquid, just give it a quick google - truly fascinating stuff that mimics the addition of whipped egg whites in a traditional sponge cake.

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I know I said it above but I LOVE the addition of matcha here - not only for what it adds in color and flavor but for the clean boost of energy this superfood provides. Paired with coconut and vanilla extract and the light, spongey texture this cake is truly something unique that will impress vegans and non-vegans alike!

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My mom and I had a similar dessert served to us on a recent trip to Mexico and I was blown away by the fact that a vegan cake could get so light and spongey so I set out to recreate it, first by doing a ton of research. The final recipe I settled on was a mash up of two or three I found online and it is simple, quick and totally do-able even for a novice vegan baker. PLUS I only had to test it once to get the perfect result so the measurements and method is pretty fool proof - be sure to use self rising flour or it will not turn out the same! You can of course leave off the chocolate ganache but I do love the extra sweetness it gives this delicate cake. It would be interesting to omit the green tea powder from the recipe, opting for a different flavor instead - perhaps raspberry, cacao or chai spice! I also could see this batter working well as cupcakes - just be sure to cut your cooking time by half to start. 

In case you were wondering, some benefits of matcha include:

  1. A clean boost of energy. A less jitter effect compared to coffee.
  2. Aids in natural weight loss
  3. Aids in natural detoxification
  4. Loaded with disease fighting antioxidants
  5. Boosts memory and concentration

Want to know more about the benefits of matcha before you invest in this somewhat-pricey superfood? Read on, here!

Will you try this cake? Let me know in the comments below! Now onto the recipe...


Serves: 12 even pieces • Prep Time: 15 minutes • Cook Time: 25-35 minutes


FOR THE CAKE

  • 1 cup unsweetened, plain coconut yogurt (I used the So Delicious brand)
  • 3/4 sugar OR 1/4 + 2tbsp. stevia/sugar baking blend (I used Truvia brand)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. coconut flavor extract
  • 1+1/2 tsp. high quality matcha powder (I found mine here on Amazon)
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1+1/2 cup self rising flour
  • 1/2 cup aquafaba (aka chic pea juice), whipped to soft peaks

FOR THE CHOCOLATE GANACHE

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup vegan chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350*F. 

In a large bowl, combine the coconut yogurt, sugar, baking soda and baking powder - whisk to combine. Allow to sit for 5-10 minutes until small bubbles start to form. In the meantime, drain a can of chick peas and use an electric whisk to beat the canned liquid til it forms soft, white peaks (be patient, this can take 5-10 minutes). 

Once you see small bubbles in the yogurt mixture, whisk in the oil, vanilla, coconut extract, matcha and salt until well combined. Then sift in the flour. Fold it gently into the wet ingredients using a rubber spatula - do not over mix. The batter should be somewhat stiff. Take 1/2 cup of the aquafaba and fold it into the batter - the aquafaba will deflate some as you do this, but again, do not over mix. 

Transfer the batter to a parchment-lined, well-oiled oven-safe pan or tin (I used a 6x9" glass dish). Spread evenly across the bottom of the pan - note it may seem a bit flat now but don't worry, the cake rises quite a bit. Bake for 25 minutes, turning the pan halfway through. Test for doneness using a toothpick - if it comes out clean the cake is ready - if it does not, bake for 5-10 minutes more. Once done, take the cake out of the oven and transfer it to a wire cooling rack.

To make the ganache - melt all of the ingredients listed above together in a small sauce pan (oven low heat) or in the microwave - stirring frequently. The recipe makes far more ganache than you need to garnish the cake but it's a good thing to have on hand to up-level your fruit, ice cream or morning crepes - store in your fridge and re-heat gently anytime you need a little chocolate love. 

Allow the cake to cool almost fully before pouring the ganache over in a very thin, even layer. Serve the cake at room temperature.. Garnish with a sprinkle of matcha powder or a dollop of coconut whipped cream. Wonderful with a cup of green tea! 

 

 

LOVE THROUGH FOOD, LIVECLEAN KITCHEN

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