What is Konacha (粉茶)
Konacha 粉茶 means powder tea or bud tea, a kind of Japanese green tea made up of tea buds, dust, and small leaves that were left behind during the processing of Sencha and Gyokuro. Although. It is named powdered tea, but it is not finely grounded into a powder form like Matcha; instead, it has small bits and pieces.
Sometimes, manufacturers specifically grind Sencha leaves to make them in tiny pieces and sell them as Konacha when demand is high. It is relatively cheaper than Sencha due to being made from leftover tea leaves. When Konacha is made from remaining Gyokuro leaves and buds, it is marketed as Gyokurokonacha 玉露粉茶. Also, you can roast Konacha to dilute the bitterness and get a smoky aroma and nutty flavor, this form of tea is labeled as Houjikonacha ほうじ粉茶.
Konacha has a strong flavor, which is also suitable for using it as an ingredient in cooking, just like Matcha. Due to small bits, it quickly dissolves when used in cooking or when the tea is brewed. Therefore, brewing time should be minimum, like 30 seconds max to get the delicate flavor and avoid having the bitter after-taste. Konacha is often served at sushi restaurants, labeled as agari.
Here is a video of brewing powdered tea presented by Kirk (Twin brother of Kent Rhoads) and his son Cameron.
The brewing of Konacha is easy, just like many other Japanese green tea types. For a cup of tea, use four grams or two teaspoons of Konacha and 120ml of 80-degrees hot water. Put the tea leaves in kyusu and ad hot water over it gradually in a circular motion. Cover the teapot lid and let leaves steep for 30 seconds only. Now pour the tea into cups and serve. Tea has a mild, sweet, and grassy flavor with bitter after taste and deep green color.
Konacha is economical due to being made from leftover leaves and buds from high-grade teas and beneficial for health. It means it has the same components as other expensive teas such as Sencha and Gyokuro and therefore has the same benefits.
It dissolves into the water whole because of small bits and has many beneficial effects on your body. Nutrients and minerals in green tea help relax your nerves and open your arteries to avoid blood clotting and lower the cholesterol level. This also prevents cell aging and slows down the early-aging disease in your body and makes you healthy. It has powerful components that are consumed wholly through tea and gives you instant benefits and energy for a full day.
POWDERED GREEN TEA, MATCHA VS KONACHA VS FUNMATSUCHA
Many believe green tea powder and Matcha are the same, but it is not entirely true. In the powdered green tea category, few varieties of teas come, including Matcha. This tea only has similarity in tea plants but has its own characteristics in terms of color, texture, flavor, and growing conditions. There are two main powdered green teas, Konacha and Matcha.
Konacha is made up of small pieces of leaves that remain behind after filtering out the process of gyokuro and Sencha. However, sometimes manufacturers purposely ground Sencha leaves to make the powdered form, due to high demand. The name literally translates to powder tea, but it differs from Matcha because it is not smoothly grounded. It has an intense taste and strong color. Due to the small bits, it quickly dissolves in water, and therefore the brewing period should be minimum to avoid a strong bitter flavor.
On the other hand, Matcha is made especially by picking small and greenest young leaves that are grown under shade. Only leaves are chosen for further processing, which includes stone grinding. It is ground into a fine powder, which makes sweet umami flavor and smooth textured tea. Unlike Konacha, which has leftover leaves and used just the same, Matcha is high-quality tea made with finest leaves and, therefore, more expensive.
In terms of health benefits, both teas stand equal. Konacha also has fine quality tea leaves pieces like Matcha, so they both provide health benefits. If you like delicate flavor, choose Konacha, whereas Matcha gives you a thick and creamy taste. Both teas are ideal for using in cooking any kind of recipe or food.
You can brew, drink and use these powdered green tea in many ways. As for the general and traditional brewing process, Konacha is brewed like an ideal green teacup. You put hot water on tea leaves in a teapot and wait 30 seconds. Next, pour into cups and enjoy. Whereas, in Matcha preparation, water and powder are added in a bowl. Whisk it with bamboo whisk till foamy and consistent. Pour it in a cup and either enjoy plain or add in the beverage.
In some scenarios, Konacha is distinguished with Funmatsucha. Kona cha”粉茶” need a teapot. You would discard the used tea leaves. Funmatsu cha”粉末茶” does not need a teapot. The powder is soluble in hot water and water. This is often mixed up based on vendor or tea farms; therefore, make sure to ask if Konacha you are getting is soluble in hot water or not to ensure that you are getting the ones you desire.
Here is Kona-cha we carry: