How much do I love matcha?
Well, how much time do you have?
Ever since I knew it was a “thing”, I’ve gone with matcha-anything at every given chance: tempura green tea mochi at the ramen bar, matcha lattes at the Midtown coffee shop, tiny bags of the good stuff at the Asian market to take home and play with. I’m intoxicated by the grassy aroma, the vibrant shade of green, the indomitable nutritional benefits and raging antioxidants. Simply put, I’m hooked.
So I figured that a sweet dusting of culinary-grade matcha would take my homemade granola from damn good to a mini-transcendental experience, whether it’s experienced layered with soy yogurt and fresh blueberries, as a stealthy handful in the afternoon, or in a cereal bowl in the morning, covered with almond milk that turns green on contact..
..and I was right.
The grassiness of the matcha is toned down, balanced by the nuttiness of the roasted almonds and walnuts and the sweetness of the brown sugar and real maple syrup. The green tea flavor is there but it doesn’t smack you in the face. No, instead, it curls its pointed finger at you, beckoning “Here.. here I am.. did you notice?” Of course you noticed! But there was no assault involved.
A secondary benefit (or tertiary, even) to this matcha granola–past the ridiculous levels of antioxidants and general good-for-you–is the slow and subtle altertness that matcha’s caffeine, combined with its amino acids, promotes. You know that jittery buzz you get after one-too-many cups of coffee? Matcha is the opposite of that.
Finally, the dried blueberries toss in a new layer of sweetness, a subtle fruitiness that’s rich from the drying process; summer all year long. You could replace them with dried cherries, but I truly love how the blueberry and matcha play together here.
Do use only decent matcha powder–if you cut many corners here, you’ll end up with a tremendously bitter powder, and you just don’t want that! Nah, spring for some of the good stuff. You don’t need a ton, but it makes a huge difference!
Matcha Granola with Blueberries
- 3 cups rolled oats
- about 2 cups nuts and/or seeds (I recommend almonds and walnuts and I added in some whole flaxseeds and chia seeds)
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons oil (melted coconut oil would work very well here!)
- 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon real maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- big pinch salt
- 1 cup dried blueberries
- 2 1/2 teaspoons matcha powder
Preheat oven to 250º F.
In a large bowl, combine oats, nuts, and brown sugar.
In a separate bowl, combine oil, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt. Pour over oat mixture and toss to coat. Spread mixture out onto two baking sheets and bake 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.
Remove from oven and scrape mixture into large bowl. Let cool for a few minutes then sprinkle matcha over and toss to combine. Add in dried blueberries and toss to combine.
Keeps in an airtight container for several weeks.