Blue matcha, also known as butterfly pea flower tea, has gained popularity in recent years as a trendy and healthy drink option. But the history of this vibrant blue tea goes back centuries to its origins in Southeast Asia and Japan.
The butterfly pea flower (Clitoria ternatea) is a tropical plant native to Southeast Asia, including Thailand, Malaysia, and Vietnam. The plant’s blue flowers have been used in traditional medicine for centuries, believed to have a range of health benefits, including reducing inflammation and anxiety.
In Thailand, the blue blue matcha flowers have been brewed into a tea for centuries, known as nam dok anchan. The tea is traditionally served with honey and lime and is believed to have a cooling effect on the body, making it a popular drink during hot weather.
Butterfly pea flower tea also became popular in Japan, where it is known as ai no hana (flower of love). In Japanese culture, the tea is associated with relaxation and is often consumed before bed to promote calmness and restful sleep.
In recent years, blue matcha has gained popularity in the West as a healthy and Instagram-worthy drink option. Blue matcha powder, made from ground butterfly pea flowers, can be used to make a range of drinks, including lattes, smoothies, and cocktails.
One of the reasons for blue matcha’s popularity is its vivid blue color, which is naturally produced by the anthocyanins present in the butterfly pea flower. Anthocyanins are a type of flavonoid that are known for their antioxidant properties and have been linked to a range of health benefits, including reducing inflammation and improving brain function.
Another reason for blue matcha’s popularity is its versatility. The mild, slightly floral flavor of the tea can be paired with a range of ingredients, from traditional honey and lime to more unconventional options like coconut milk or matcha powder.
Blue matcha has also become popular among health enthusiasts due to its potential health benefits. In addition to the antioxidant properties of anthocyanins, butterfly pea flower tea is believed to have a range of other health benefits, including reducing stress and anxiety, improving cognitive function, and promoting healthy skin.
While blue matcha may be a relatively new trend in the West, its history stretches back centuries in Southeast Asia and Japan. Whether enjoyed for its vibrant blue color or its potential health benefits, blue matcha is a unique and tasty addition to any drink menu.