Sometimes it seems like I am always horribly late getting on the bus. I see interesting cooking techniques and appealing ingredients fly by me and all my good intentions to use them. Sometimes these ingredients reside right in my own pantry…and still it takes months of mental prodding to get me to try that particular recipe I have been saving (for what I have no idea)…a recipe that I really, with all my heart, do want to make!
Matcha, that fine green tea powder that everyone has used to make cakes and cookies and ice cream and mousses and all sorts of sweet things. Matcha, which has been done ten times over, up-down-and-sideways, already. Matcha, which I have had lounging in my pantry since my trip to Hong Kong. I know, bad, bad me.
“Better late than never” is too convenient a rationalization for the procrastinating likes of me! I feel like I’ve just discovered bootleg pants when everyone else has moved on to skinny jeans :(
Anyways, enough whining ;) A perfect opportunity did present itself (as it always will when it comes to baked goods) in the form of another afternoon get-together with my bookstore friends (the same bunch I baked these for). I had (still have – good intentions like I said!) a bunch of matcha recipes filed away, but I chose this White Chocolate and Matcha Tea Marbled Cake I found on Bea’s beautiful La Tartine Gourmande for my first matcha venture. Her gorgeous photos and delicious-sounding recipes never fail to enchant me! It helped that Stella of Sweet Temptations made it as well with glowing reviews :)
Matcha Tea and White Chocolate Marbled Cake
(from this recipe at Bea’s La Tartine Gourmande)
- 3 large eggs (2 oz each)
- 180 grams all-purpose flour
- 80 grams white chocolate (just like Bea, I used Valrhona)
- 120 grams butter
- 150 grams fine sugar
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoon matcha tea
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- Melt the butter.
- Place the chocolate in a bowl over a pot of simmering water and let simmer until the chocolate is melted.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, place the eggs with the sugar and beat until it is white in color, then remove (I used the whisk attachment).
- Sift the flour with the baking powder and add it to the egg/sugar mixture, mixing manually with a whisk. Then add the salt and butter and mix.
- Divide the batter in 2/3 and 1/3. Add the melted chocolate to the 2/3 batter and the matcha tea to the 1/3 batter.
- Preheat your oven at 350F. Grease a rectangular cake pan/loaf pan and add half of the chocolate batter. Continue with the matcha tea batter and finish with the other half of the chocolate batter.
- Take a fork and pass it through the different layers of batter.
- Cook your cake for 50 minutes, or until the blade of a knife comes out dry when inserted in the cake. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes before un-molding.
Although I’m not a fan of white chocolate, I did enjoy this cake. The white chocolate’s overwhelmingly sweet (to me) taste dissipated nicely into the tight, buttery crumb. The matcha layer was flavored just right, not too strong but with the tea’s distinct earthiness coming through. I didn’t swirl the layers enough however, so the matcha layer just sat there stodgily instead of developing into cool retro waves. That didn’t affect the taste though and I’m happy to report that my bookstore friends went back for second servings! :)
Talk about serendipity: Just as I was thinking of finally using my matcha, Kelli of Lovescool, and of those famous matcha tea cookies (and whose recipe is also part of my matcha files), posted a round up of the many bloggers who have made these popular sweets! Yay! :)
More serendipity! Amrita of La Petite Boulangette is hosting this round of Sugar High Friday and her theme is Asian Sweet Invasion -- encouraging all participants to put an Asian twist or use an Asian ingredient in a classic dessert recipe. So this will be my entry...hooray! I suppose, at the end of it all, this cake's timing couldn't have been more perfect! ;)