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Tag Archives: matcha

Travel Japan – Train to Adachi Museum

I left Kyoto on the bullet train for the Adachi Museum and Garden. By now I felt more at home on the trains. I doubled checked, while I waited on the platform and discovered in time, that I was waiting at the wrong platform.

The trains are beautiful and on time, clean and exciting. Look how pretty my rail pass is.

At Yasugi, I took a museum bus. The Adachi Museum is noted for it’s ceramics collection and it’s gardens are considered among the most beautiful in Japan. I can see why. When I arrived I stowed my backpack and camera in a locker. Surprise – they encourage you to take photos. Ah well, I bought a coffee table book instead.

It is so lovely; there is a blog post about the secret of it’s success at http://www.japanlivingarts.com/?p=4224.

I marvel at how humans and nature combine to demonstrate their best.

The museum has a restaurant. I wasn’t hungry after eating a bento box on the train. They also have a tea house looking out on a garden. I had matcha there and lingered in bliss. The presentation was peaceful, simple and very moving. My tea sweet was served with a small twig. It seemed to be pine and was carved to a point. The handle still had bark on it. It put me in one of those moments of ecstasy. The Japanese aesthetic does that to me regularly.

Being an American, I wondered if this terribly tasteful toothpick was disposable. I could not bear it, if it was to be thrown away. I brought it with me as I left, and asked the hostess, IF they were going to throw it away, could I have it?

She didn’t speak English. Her eyes widened as she understood my request and a tiny gasp escaped her lips. Flooded with embarrassment, I placed the treasure down and escaped to the Museum area where no one knew my barbaric assumptions.

© 2011 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.

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Posted by on June 20, 2011 in Abundance, Japan

 

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Matcha Tea at home

Most days I have matcha at midmorning when my day settles down a little.

I eat a tea sweet while the water is heating. I get them from Costco here in Hawaii. They only have them in the fall.

Then I take my Matcha out of the freezer. I get it from Matcha and More. They order it from Japan when you place your order. It comes in two weeks. My current favorite is Kiun or Joyous Clouds.

Measure two scoops, ( approximately 1/4 teaspoon), of powdered green tea using a curved bamboo measure.

Add hot water, (1/3 cup more or less), and whisk with a bamboo whisk. It’s cut from a single piece of bamboo. Use it at first to mash up any lumps, then beat till frothy.

Then hold up your bowl and say “ita daki mas.” One translation is, “I receive.”

© 2010 J.B. Vadeboncoeur

 
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Posted by on January 5, 2010 in How to, Japan

 

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Travel to Japan – Matcha Green Tea

When I was in Japan, I experienced the tea ceremony a few times. I instantly liked the taste and am surprised when people don’t. It has a fresh grass taste.

Matcha is powdered green tea that is made from the first small leaves budding in the spring. They give the tea its characteristic bright green color.

A monk told us that after drinking it, we would look more beautiful as the large quantity of vitamin C it contains was absorbed into our blood stream.

Tea sweets are served with the tea. It’s our equivalent of a cookie or two. It is usually less sweet than we are used to.  The whole ceremony is beautiful; the utensils, the tea bowls, and the artful way the tea sweets are wrapped and presented.

Monks would have a sweet and the tea which has caffeine before meditating. It would help them to keep wakeful during the meditation.

These pictures are of some of my pottery for tea . The one with the wider diameter is used in summer because the greater surface area allows the tea to cool faster.

During the tea ceremony, the focus is on what is present in the moment. There is a flower arrangement and art work. The past or the future are not brought into the conversation.

It increases the relaxation and the enjoyment for me to practice staying in the present.

© 2010 J.B. Vadeboncoeur

 
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Posted by on January 4, 2010 in Japan

 

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