I am a lot like my momma (who is awesome and whom I love dearly). Growing up I mimicked her often. I was totally a picky eater like her. And I loved tea. I still love tea and I thank my momma for this.
About 10 years I was doing A LOT (as in hours a day) of food research, when I stumbled about matcha. Powdered green tea, with a dense amount of nutrients and goodness. Of course I live in the Midwest in a lovely Indiana town (and I mean that in all sincerity, I have tried to leave and always end up back here. But the older I get, the more my appreciate grows) and I couldn’t find any. Shoot when I started my market 5 years ago, I did a lot of explaining on what gluten-free meant. Now I hardly have anyone ask me what gluten-free is. I also couldn’t find a lot of flours or sugars that I needed. Recently it has gotten better. Still have to order cassava flour. Finally found a place with arrowroot. And one place with cacao butter. And maple sugar, although I bought all that, so now I ordered more online again. Now 10 years later I can find matcha powder.
So for a decade I have been eager. Eager to bake and experiment with matcha powder. To drink it (have you had a latte made with matcha? Waiting on my favorite coffee shop Java Haute to catch on to the matcha thing). And to bake with! Earlier this year I posted a recipe for a matcha ricotta tart, which I will actually be revisiting this week. I made some strawberry pies and needed a green crust for some stems and thought matcha would be a great natural way to obtain the color I needed. I drank some matcha I had the other day, which is paired with orange. It is lovely, I have had one with lemon as well, but I use orange less so I was more intrigued with that flavor combo. What if I made a matcha tart with an orange curd bottom. And then an orange ricotta filling? It got me exceedingly excited. Last winter, for Java I had made an orange ricotta pie which I absolutely loved. It had very subtle flavors and was not that sweet. So be prepared next week for that recipe.
Since I had matcha on hand, I thought I would tweak a recipe I saw for matcha swirled sugar cookies. I was geeked to say the least that I got a swirl. And the swirl kept through baking. I think if I made these again, I would dip them in white chocolate. I have found with matcha, it is about having the perfect amount. Too much can get a little bitter and not so good. Actually, thinking just now as I type, I would add some lemon zest to the regular sugar cookie dough and dip it all in white chocolate. Black sesame could be an interesting combo with the matcha too. It is on my list of things to try and I have seen it numerous times paired with matcha. Again, I do not live in a food-forward city, so first I have to find it. Some day………
Gluten-Free Matcha Swirl Sugar Cookies
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup maple sugar
- 2 cups almond flour
- 1/2 tsp almond extract
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- pinch salt
- 1 tbsp. matcha
- 1 tsp lemon zest
Directions: Beat butter with maple until whipped and lighter in color. Slow speed, add egg, lemon zest, and almond extract. In a separate bowl sift almond flour, salt and baking powder. Add to the batter. Beat until it comes together. Remove half of the dough. Add matcha to the remaining half. Wrap each dough and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325.
Roll out each dough into equal sized rectangles between two pieces of parchment to about a 1/2 inch thickness. Remove the top layers of parchment. Plop one on top of the other. I did my backwards, so the green was on top. Use the parchment to help you roll the dough into a log. Freeze for 30 minutes.
Remove log. Slice 1/2 inch cookies or whatever size you want. Note that thicker cookies will take longer and thinner cookies will take less time. I got about 20 cookies with mine. Lay onto parchment lined baking sheets. Press down slightly. These don’t grow too much, so a ton of space in between isn’t really necessary.
Bake for about 12 minutes. Cool for 10 then move to a cooling rack. Eat and enjoy! Or dip in homemade white chocolate, maybe.
Adapted from Mom Foodie