Matcha Blondies

Lately I’ve been experimenting with a lot of matcha baking recipes. Matcha, the trendy green-tea powder that’s now offered in lattes and drinks everywhere, is a very complex ingredient. It’s a bit of an adult taste, since it has an earthy, bitter aspect to it, so using just a tad too much can totally ruin your dessert, but if you use too scant an amount, then it’s as if you used none at all. But after a lot of tinkering, I’m happy to have successfully pulled off a super easy matcha blondie recipe. When I pulled the blondies out of the oven and took a bite, I felt like Goldie Locks when I thought to myself, this is just right.

This recipe really is pretty easy–you’ll just need butter, brown sugar, vanilla extract, salt, an egg, all-purpose flour and matcha powder. The hardest part may be figuring out what kind of matcha powder to get. If you go to a Japanese grocery store, you’ll find different grades of matcha available, ranging from the cheapest culinary grade to the most expensive ceremonial grade. The ceremonial grade is usually about 2x the price of the culinary grade, fyi. I’ve heard that ceremonial is the least bitter and the most vibrant in color, so I’d recommend using this type of matcha in the blondies. I really like the organic ceremonial matcha powder from Sugimoto Tea Company.

Ingredients:
1 stick of unsalted butter, melted
1 cup lightly packed brown sugar (light or dark is fine)
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher sea salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon matcha powder

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix the melted butter and brown sugar in a bowl. Add the egg, vanilla extract and sea salt and mix thoroughly. Once blended, add the flour and continue to mix. Add the matcha powder last and mix until it is distributed evenly throughout the batter. Spread the batter in a well-greased 8 in x 8 in pan (I sprayed some Pam in mine) and bake for 22 minutes. Let the blondies cool for about 20 minutes before serving.

*You can also make matcha brownies if you prefer an earthy, chocolatey taste. The ingredients for that are as follows (cook at the same temperature and time as the blondie recipe):
1 stick of unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher sea salt
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon matcha powder

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