Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Matcha Cocoa Nibbed Shortbread and a Giveaway #20

Since CT first bought some matcha back from Japan a few years ago, I have been in love with the stuff. Matcha is a Japanese green tea, very finely ground and stirred into hot water to make a beautiful bright green beverage. It also works wonderfully well in baking, where it not only gives a lovely colour, but acts as a good foil for all that sweetness. Here are some of the ways I've already used it:
When I was sent a packet of ceremonial matcha to try recently from Matcha Factory, I got very excited. It's been a while since I had any to drink and even longer since I did any baking with it. Tea is a serious business in Japan and ceremonial matcha is the finest grade available, made from the youngest and sweetest leaves. It is thus the most expensive; this 50g packet costs £18.95. If you are interested in using matcha for baking purposes only, then a coarser and cheaper version would be fine.

The tea gave me the opportunity to try out the two new glasses I recently picked up for 40p in one of our local charity shops. The tea itself has a unique and distinctive flavour which I took to very readily.

Matcha is a bit of a wonder and guess what? It has achieved "superfood" status. It is reported to have 137 times the antioxidants of normal green tea and is said to increase the metabolism, boost the immune system, improve concentration and help the body fight cancer.

Given these wondrous properties, the shortbread biscuits I made with it, are ideal fare for  the leaner, meaner, healthier month of January. Yes there is some sugar in them, but for biscuits, it's a relatively small amount and it's balanced by all the matcha health benefits. I've used half wholemeal spelt in the mix and wholewheat semolina rather than white. Cocoa nibs are packed full of another set of health giving properties and the matcha element has already been covered.

This is how I made matcha cocoa nibbed shortbread
  • Creamed 75g vanilla sugar (caster) with 150g salted butter until light and fluffy.
  • Added 1 tbsp matcha and creamed some more.
  • Sifted in 100g wholemeal spelt flour, 100g white flour and 50g wholewheat semolina.
  • Stirred to combine until a sandy mixture was achieved.
  • Halved the mixture and pressed into two 6" (15 cm) tin foil flan cases.
  • Pricked all over with a fork.
  • Baked at 150C for 25 minutes.
  • Dusted one with vanilla (caster) sugar and cut into triangles and turned the other one out onto a board before dusting with sugar.
Oh my, this shortbread was good. It was lovely and soft and melted in the mouth with added textural interest being added by the chewy cocoa nibs. The flavour was perfect for me, not too strong but well defined and of course, I adore the colour. If you prefer something a little sweeter, you could substitute the cocoa nibs for the chocolate of your choice chopped into bits or even leave out the chocolate element all together.


Giveaway - not only have I been offered a 50g packet of ceremonial matcha to giveaway to one lucky reader, but it comes with a whisk (chasen) and scoop so you can create your own authentic cup of Japanese tea. This is worth over £40. 

To be in with a chance of winning, please fill in the Rafflecopter below. You will need to leave a comment on this post which then gives you additional chances to enter if you so wish. Rafflecopter will pick a winner at random from the entries received. Please give me some way of identifying you in the comment section as I will be verifying the validity of entries and will always check back to the comments to ensure that part has been done. Any automated entries will be disqualified. This giveaway is only open to those with a UK postal address. Winners will need to respond within 7 days of being contacted. Failure to do this may result in another winner being picked.

Prizes are offered and provided by Matcha Factory and Chocolate Log Blog accepts no responsibility for the acts or defaults of said third party.

If you need some help to enter using Rafflecopter, here's a quick clip to show you how.

Closing date is Wednesday 5 February 2013

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Promoted on UK Wins

180 comments:

  1. Give it to my daughter who spending several years in Japan now loves anything Japanese. She learnt the tea ceremony while there. Perhaps she will treat me to the whole experience

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  2. I would love to make the shortbread you made it looks amazing, I would probably end up drinking a lot of it too!

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  3. I love shortbread so I'd use your recipe!

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  4. Would try making the Rhubarb, Matcha and Chocolate Marble Cake, sounds delicious!

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  5. I would try the shortbread, looks amazing!

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  6. I would most certainly try the battenburg recipe as it looks and sounds scrummy

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  7. I've seen lots of cake recipes using matcha powder so would try them out!

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  8. I would give it to my sister! She loves this sort of thing and needs a treat as she broke her foot on boxing day. x

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  9. Your shortbread looks amazing. I would like to try matcha in something similar, where the flavour would be quite concentrated. There are several biscuit recipes on my blog which would work well.

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  10. That is a lovely shortbread. I did some time ago some baking with earl grey tea.

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  11. I would make the shortbread and then sit back relax eating it along with a cup of Matcha tea.

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  12. Bake with it, maybe make your shortbread recipe or cupcakes.

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  13. I would have a go at this shortbread

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  14. I've read a lot about matcha but not tried it, I'd definitely want to drink it first. GG

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  15. I would have it with my morning muesli mix

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  16. carolynncrabb589 January 2013 00:12

    I would use it in a cake as the subtle background flavour - maybe a madiera base

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  17. I love matcha in desserts and cakes!

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  18. I love green tea! Never thought of using it with cocoa though...the shortbread looks marvelous.

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  19. Hi, your short bread look awesome. I like green tea, excellent for our health.
    Have a nice week ahead, regards.

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  20. The shortbread looks great. Too bad I don't live in the UK and can't take part in the giveaway.

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  21. Your shortbread looks amazing! First time I see green shortbread....haha. Love that you used spelt flour. I have always been much intrigued by all the recipes using matcha but have not seen matcha here in Aberdeen. I would love to try it one day, especially your matcha shortbread. I like using spelt flour so I will be using spelt flour too. Thanks very much for the giveaway. Hope luck comes my way :D

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  22. Happy New Year to you, Choclette! I love Matcha - and making Matcha and rose macarons would be wonderful to use this but your shortbread? Wow. Bet the taste is just as fabulous as it looks.

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  23. I will definitely try to bake your shortbread. I have a dear friend who adores shortbread. I will be a real treat for him.

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  24. Jessica Cheung9 January 2013 13:09

    I would make Matcha Macarons with red bean fillings ~ served with green tea! Heaven!

    Jessica
    Hiuyun88@gmail.com

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  25. I'd love to use it in a Korean rainbow rice cake recipe as part of my aroundtheworldin80bakes challenge!

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  26. I would love to both drink the Matcha tea and use it in baking. This is a shortbread with colour, all good and delicious too, I just know it!

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  27. Hope that I can win this giveaway. I will use this to make a green tea sponge cake.

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  28. this looks like an interesting tea.I would used it to moist the sponge of a cake and fill it all with creme patisserie!

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  29. Love the colour of your shortbread! I'd love to make matcha martinis!

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  30. I'd make a Matcha Green Tea and Sweet Chestnut Cake (recipe from JapanCentre.com) It's gorgeous! but my son has recently visited Japan twice in the last year - so it will be a toss-up as to whether we drink it or I cook with it!

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  31. Matcha tea loaf would be my choice.

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  32. I got given some cocoa nibs for Christmas and was hoping to make some shortbread with them. Great idea to use some matcha, especially for a January to create an antioxidant double dose!

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  33. I have never tried Matcha, and would love to expand my tea drinking knowledge. Love the 40p glass for tea, reminded me of the long trips by train in Russia where tea has always been served in this type of glass. The recipe looks lovely.

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  34. Use it in smoothies to make them extra nutritious

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  35. lovely flavours - looks like just the sort of shortbread I love - I love the look of the cup of matcha tea but am unsure about the flavour as there aren't many teas I like but I can see why it is in a glass mug :-)

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  36. I would make a Green Tea and Carrot cake to share in the staff room!

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  37. I'd make green tea cupcakes

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  38. I'd love to make something with it but depends what I'd fancy!

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  39. i`d make some healthy lunch box treats like flapjacks and cookies x

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  40. I would have to try the short bread recipe, ive never made it before this would be a great way to break me in

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  41. I'll try something new - make a surprise for my family!

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  42. Love the blog, and hadn't heard of Matcha until today, definitely going to give it a try!

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  43. MMM MAKE GREEN TEA FRAPPUCINOS!

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  44. hmm i'm not quite sure what i'd do with it

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  45. i would try out some of your recipes :)

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  46. I would try a green tea shot as I heard good things about drinking it with orange juice or similar.

    @rachiegr

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  47. I love a slightly savory ingredient to put into cakes. I'd bake one and then have a big slice with a nice steamy cup of tea.

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  48. I would definitely love to try the shortbread you made with some of it!! Sounds and looks lovely!!! :-) very different!!!

    Thank you!

    @SaladScoffer

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  49. Maybe drink it or bake with it

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  50. I'd make it into a yummy smoothie with yoghurt,berries & banana! xo

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  51. I'd give the shortbread a go and of course i'll make some tea to go with it!

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  52. I'd make a Japanese Matcha Souffle Cheesecake

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  53. My friend is obsessed with Japanese culture so I would make her drinks & biscuits

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  54. Rebecca Phillips12 January 2013 00:37

    use your shortbread recipe. im rubbish at cooking

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  55. I would have a go at the shortbread,

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  56. I'd make a nice matcha chiffon

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  57. Being almost addicted to Battenburg I would have to try using it in your recipe.

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  58. would love to try anything out x

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  59. Make a Japanese style Matcha tiramisu like the ones that come in individual cups at the Japan Centre in London

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  60. would drink it , may try out the shortbread.

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  61. i think id try and drink it, and attempt a shortbread recipe with it, although my last attempt at shortbread failed badly... haha!

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  62. Matcha Tea cakes!Great blog by the way

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  63. Would make the shortbread! Even though I'm useless at baking... Maybe that should be 'attempt to make'.

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  64. I'd love to try the shortbread recipe - and also try some as tea.

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  65. I'd make it into some bitesize cakes to enjoy with a cup of the matcha tea

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  66. Maybe drink it

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  67. I'd try to make the Matcha chocolate roll

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  68. Would definitely like to try the shortbread. Love shortbread and that sounds delicious. :) :D Good luck to everyone x

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  69. Definitely shortbread!

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  70. some gorgeous shortbread, a great delicacy in Bonnie Scotland xx

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  71. I don't know, it would be so hard, i love shortbread but i love trying new tea, probably the tea :) such a hard decision!

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  72. I have a chocolate covered cashew recipe that needs it-yes please!

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  73. I'd make matcha green tea lattes!

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  74. Andrea Johnson13 January 2013 00:04

    I love the look of that shortbread!

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  75. Make your shortbread recipe

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  76. I would make the shortbread, albeit nervously as the last time I made shortbread was at school and it caught fire (the shortbread that is, not the school!)

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  77. I'd certainly give the shortbread a go - have several cups of tea and maybe try a green tea cake !

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  78. I would definitely try your shortbread recipe
    Jo Young

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  79. Isabel O'Brien13 January 2013 16:40

    I'd probably use your recipe as I don't have much imagination with these things.

    @yyesidolikecake

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  80. I'd make some ice cream with it.

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  81. Ahhh the shortbread is making me hungry! Looks fabulous.

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  82. I'll definitely making your Matcha shortbread recipe! YUMMY!

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  83. I drink it already, was thinking of making cookies with some :)

    Simon.

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  84. i want to make ice cream with it

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  85. Come back to the Blog to find out what I could do with it.

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  86. Drink it first, then a teabread I think.

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  87. I'd make the Matcha shortbread, mmmmm

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  88. Oooft I think I'd have to drink first and then try Matcha shortbread!!

    Kerys -ox
    Little Bo Blab

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  89. I have it on good authority that it's great in a martini!

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  90. I'd add it to some fruit juices.

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  91. I would drink it, as you say it is the finest quality, and it sound amazingly healthy

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  92. combine with champagne to make cupcakes

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  93. Id definately try the shortcake

    Catty212MSE@hotmail.co.uk

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  94. i would look forward to use this if i win

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  95. Great giveaway, i want to win :)

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  96. use it in baking from one of your recipe

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  97. I would drink it too keep myself nice and healthy.

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  98. I'm a great fan of shortbread, and this looks amazing!

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  99. This looks fascinating, I will have to try some :)

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  100. I've always wanted to try some Matcha, looks brilliant!

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  101. I'd try your recipe for shortbread

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  102. I would love to make the shortbread

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  103. I would try and make the shortbread.

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  104. matcha cocoa nibbed shortbread

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  105. I would love to try it as a drink first as I am always a bit lethargic at this time of year and it certainly sounds like it would give me a boost!

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  106. I would let my girlfriend have it and she loves baking so I would be able to try whatever creation she comes up with!

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  107. I'd want to try just drinking it as I've never tried it before! The health benefits sound amazing. :)

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  108. I would love to try the shortbread recipe!

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  109. I have never tried this but would love to! To drink and bake with.

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  110. first thing I'd do is drink a lovely big, hot glass of it and then I'd try baking with it

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  111. I'd probably start off with something easy like the shortbread or cookies or something like that but apparently you can add it to ice cream which sounds interesting

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  112. I'd definitely try the shortbread first

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  113. I want to try to reproduce your Triple Layer Macha Chocolate Cake before Mother Day and if it works out bake one for my mum who sometimes I wonder if she loves chocolate more than me.

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  114. I would perform a tea ceremony for my family. The kids will love it :)

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  115. Make the shortbread for my husband, he loves it!

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  116. Give it to my boyfriend for Valentine's Day - it's right up his street and I'm sure he could make some lovely things with it :D

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  117. try the receipe for shortbread!! yummy!!

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  118. Attempt to make shortbread...I'm a terrible cook but I keep trying! :D

    @EmaKinsella

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  119. id drink it first and see if i enjoyed it like that

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  120. Would try and make the shortbread!

    @hudson3lb

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  121. Use in baking.. Lots lots of baking :}

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  122. I would love to try out your shortbread recipe. It looks scrummy!!!

    @Anglorain

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  123. I love baking so I'd try your shortbread first, then maybe incorporate it into a cake x

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  124. think i would have to try out your recipe as it looks amazing

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  125. I would have a try at the shortbread as it looks delicious x

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  126. Might try this for valentine's tea.

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  127. share it with my Filipina friend who loves this sort of thing

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  128. The Shortbread sound great :)

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  129. Try out your recipe
    Farhana

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  130. Invite my friends around for a new experience of Japanese tea

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  131. I would love to make Matcha Martinis!

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  132. sharon angelz rice4 February 2013 21:14

    love your blog amazing recipes

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  133. It would have to be tea and biscuits. Well matcha cookies, to be exact :)

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  134. I would use for baking some yummy biscuits

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  135. make some shortbread I think

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  136. defo shortbread- my fav!! - not very good when your on a diet then

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  137. I would give brownies a go with it :)

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  138. Make some kind of shortbread

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  139. drink it and make some matcha cupcakes

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  140. make a matcha latte

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  141. i would have to make a cake or some cupcakes yummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmy

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  142. Stephen Postlethwaite5 February 2013 09:55

    Make cakes, om nom nom

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  143. I'd drink it.... sounds lovely!

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  144. I would love to make the shortbread

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  145. Haven't got a clue at the moment but would love to find a Slimming World friendly recipe all for me :)

    Becci Cleary

    @Beccicleary87

    rcleary57@yahoo.com

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  146. I'd try the shortbread recipe

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  147. What an amazing giveaway !
    I attended a Tea Ceremony course whilst visiting Kyoto in December.
    Matcha is too precious to do anything else than drink but I've learned how to use the whisk and make it nicely foam ;-)
    If it was lesser quality sencha, I would make Sencha-misu ;-)

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  148. Make shortbread like you did - looks delicious!

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  149. I like the idea of the Battenburg cake ,so i think i would try and bake one of those first

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  150. I would use it to drink as know it's good for you as full of antioxidents.

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  151. I'd like to try and make the shortbread and if it was not so cold I would try using it in a sorbet. But just a refreshing glass of Matcha would do!

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  152. first thing I'd do is to make a cup of tea to try it in its perfect form, than I'd try it with a dark chocolate sponge cake

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  153. Id drink it to see what it tastes like, then if I liked it I'd buy some of the cheaper stuff to bake with. It seems a shame to use such an expensive product in baking.

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  154. I'd probably have to make the cupcakes!

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  155. turn it into match lattes....mmmmm

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