Genmai Cha is a type of tea which is very popular in Japan, made by combining Sencha green tea with toasted rice. Because the rice sometimes puffs into popcorn like shapes, Genmaicha is sometimes known as popcorn tea. In some areas, this Japanese tea is served with Macha, a type of powdered green tea, to enhance the green tea flavor.
The slightly grassy, slightly nutty flavor of Genmaicha has long been popular in Japan, and consumers from other nations enjoy this toasted rice tea as well.
In Japanese, “Genmaicha” literally means brown rice tea, as “cha” means tea and “genmai” refers to dark, unhulled rice.
Roasted brown rice has a more rich, nutty flavor than hulled grains. Sencha tea is more strongly flavored than some other types of green tea, picked in the spring and steamed immediately after picking and then dried in hot air before being pan roasted.
The leaves of Sencha are tightly furled, and have a slightly bittersweet flavor which pairs well with toasted rice.
According to ancient Japanese legend, during the 15th century, a servant named Genmai was serving his master, a samurai warrior, some tea when a few grains of rice accidentally fell out of his pocket and into the pot.
The warrior was so infuriated that his servant had "ruined" a perfectly good cup of tea that he chopped off his head. He decided to drink the cup of tea anyway, and discovered that he enjoyed the distinct flavor of the tea and rice infusion.
In honor of his poor servant, he insisted that this combination of tea and rice be served every morning and named it genmaicha ("cha" means tea in Japanese).
Another story claims that genmaicha was a way for frugal Japanese housewives to stretch their tea with the addition of rice to get the most out of their precious tea leaves.
Unlike the affordable luxury it had become today, tea was historically a pricey commodity. The Japanese peasants found it difficult to afford much tea, and would mix it with roasted rice, which was abundant and cheap. Thus, they were able to squeeze more cups from the same amount of leaves.
Whether its origin was accidental or practical, genmaicha had outgrown its humble origins to become a favorite of many urban dwellers in both Asia and the West.
The mixture of brown rice and green tea are very rich in Vitamin B and Vitamin E. As we all know, green tea is also well-known as an anti-oxidant agent, sedative effect, and also minimize fatigue.
Green tea is rich in Chlorophyll, tannin, amino acids and group Vitamin B. It can helps to promote body metabolism, dissolve body fat and to prevent cancer. It can be served as hot or cold drink.
Genmaicha tea is a mixture of steamed green tea with brown rice. It’s not only contain of chlorophyll, tannins and amino acids, the Vitamin B in brown rice also used to lower blood pressure and reduce cholesterol, it’s good for our spleen, helps to dissolve fat and also to maintain a healthy skin’s moisture level.
In Japan and Korea, it’s not only a healthy and beauty drink, it is also very popular because of it’s unique weight-loss effect of the green tea that could brings slimming result.
The brown rice contains 100% large amount of dietary fiber to help on diet and digestion. Besides, it is also rich in Vitamin E and Collagen that is good for our skin.
To find more green tea benefits please refer to this page.
Like other green teas, Genmaicha will be damaged if it is prepared with boiling water. The tea should be steeped at temperatures between 80-88 degrees Celsius for 1-3 minutes. A lower brewing temperature will yield a more rice like flavor, while the higher temperature brings out more green tea notes.
Approximately two grams of Genmaicha should be used for every eight ounce cup.
Start with your favorite spring or filtered water.
Place 1-2 tsp, about 2-3g Genmaicha into the strainer.( Use a large strainer basket to allow the leaves to open and release their flavor )
Pouring hot water ( Temperature: around 90 degrees Celsius ) over the tea.
Strain the tea after 10 seconds. ( To wash up the tea leaves and preheat the tea ware )
The temperature should down to 80-85 degrees Celsius after the above steps.
Pouring the hot water over the tea and steep for 1-3 minutes. (depends on your own taste)
The rice flavor was much stronger at a higher temperature, so if you prefer a more subtle taste, we recommend the lower steeping temperature and shorter steeping time.
Strain the tea and enjoy!
Re-steep to make another cup. Play with the amount of tea, the water temperature, and steeping time to re-steep – rely on taste, not color.
The fresh, vegetal character of the green tea is balanced with the toasted, nutty flavor of the rice.
As the tea steeps, it will start to turn a rich amber color and will fill the air with the fresh leafy smell of green tea, combined with earthier undertones from the brown rice.
Toasty and malty with a smooth, rounded body and satisfying aroma.
Once a bag of herbals or flowers is opened, The herbals could be kept in ambient and dry conditions such as in the living room, the study or the office, but it must be completely away from light, moisture, smell and heat.
An airtight container or a vacuum tank is an ideal storage solution.
Sealed Clips are also a good choice for opened packaging bags.
The quality of the herbals lasts longer if they are kept in the fridge. But please make sure the package is sealed and cover with a box to insulate from temperature change.
In addition, if the bag is taken in and out from the fridge very often, this will cause heat stress to the herbals as temperature is increased and decreased very frequently. Air will be drawn from outside and condensation will occur.
That is why we packed our herbals into small sealed packaging bags instead of large bags or boxes. You could open a small bag of the herbal and enjoy its freshness while the other bags are sealed and well kept in the fridge.
Many alternative medicine health care providers feel that using certain herbal teas during pregnancy is a great way to support optimal pregnancy health. Herbal teas can often provide an additional source of nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, and iron.
However, due to the lack of studies on most herbs, the FDA encourages caution when consuming herbal teas during pregnancy.
It is always best to talk with a qualified medical professional about any herbal teas that you are interested in drinking.