I’ve never made anything so green! I know I’m a bit late to the party with matcha, having taken the world by storm (in a teacup, ironically) last year as the top 2016 trend but I hadn’t yet experimented. Given it’s vibrant green colour and subtle flavour, matcha tea powder is a perfect extra ingredient to enliven any recipe but I especially like the colour against the ruby strawberries.
but I had to do a little research to discover why match was oh so special as one of the key ‘superfoods’ of recent years. First its exclusive and expensive. Traditional matcha farmers meticulously shade the plants a little at a time before hand-picking the leaves and stone-grinding to a fine dust in order to maintain colour and nutrients. Like a fine malt, the batches are made individually and served by adding hot but not boiling water and whisking vigorously in an “M” shape to dissolve the powder and froth the top. The finished matcha is then drunk in a few sips directly from the glass bowl in which it was prepared. The powder gradually settles to the bottom of the bowl or cup, so it should be drunk quickly.
However, we all got a little too creative and quickly the world was drinking matcha lattes in every starbucks and making crazy recipes ranging from smoothie bowls and macaroons to pasta and even nutri-burgers! So I guess this, as a cake, is a little less ‘out-there’ but I like that, I like cake 🙂
- 160g self raising flour
- 1.5 tbsp green matcha powder
- 170g caster sugar
- 170g softened unsalted butter
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- pinch of cinnamon
- pinch of salt
First off preheat the oven to 375°F/ 190°C or in my case around 170°C with a fan oven. Grease your iron skillet with spray oil or a little extra butter.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the butter and caster sugar until very pale and creamy, this takes a while and gives you arm ache but the more you work the better your cake will be!
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, matcha powder, baking powder, cinnamon and salt then set aside.
Take back the creamed butter-sugar and add the eggs one at a time adding a heaped tablespoon of the flour mix in between each egg to prevent curdling. Once the eggs are in, add the rest of the dry slowly and beat gently until smooth.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread it out for an even surface. Arrange the strawberry slices on top in fans by picking up whole sliced strawberries and moving them across in a swoop. Add an extra sprinkle of caster or brown sugar for a caramelised effect.
Bake for 35 minutes until a sharp knife or skewer comes out clean. Enjoy, marvelling in the intense green colour contrasted by those lovely fresh strawberries – I recommend a good strong cup of tea (not necessarily matcha tea of course) and hopefully some spring sunshine!