Thursday, November 29, 2012

Green Tea Chocolate Chip Cookies

I recently visited Seoul and Tokyo and was intrigued by all the green tea flavored baked goods.  You can find green tea mochi, tarts, sweet buns, pound cakes, cookies, etc. everywhere.  You have to look harder to find vegan versions, but they do exist!  I saw these green tea cookies at Eat More Greens in Tokyo.

(black honey, or kuromitsu, is similar to molasses...it's vegan)
Now that I'm back, all I want to do is bake green tea flavored goodies.  It can be a little tricky because too much matcha green tea powder can yield a bitter taste.  Alternatively, you can't really taste any green tea flavor if there's too little green tea powder in the recipe.  Also, if you leave the cookies/muffins/cake in the oven for too long, they'll turn brown and you'll lose that vibrant green color. 

This recipe is adapted from the fantastic Alien's Day Out blog.  I only made a few substitutions:
  • Used whole wheat pastry flour instead of all-purpose flour.
  • Increased the amount of vanilla extract to 1 teaspoon and left out the almond extract completely.
  • I love the green tea and chocolate combo, so I used vegan chocolate chips instead of dried figs and sunflower seeds.   
They were delicious!  I'll probably add a little more green tea powder next time because the green tea flavor was faint.  I used Maeda En "culinary quality" matcha green tea powder.  I'm not well-versed when it comes to green tea powder, so perhaps this brand is weak in flavor?  I dunno.  Nevertheless, the cookies were yummy and had a nice chewy texture.  Here's a photo that shows a little more of the natural green color...no food coloring, yay!


Another dessert combo I saw in Japan was green tea and adzuki beans.  I think I'll try that next!  :)