Which Utensils Do I Really Need?
Many people who are getting into matcha are unsure of which utensils are necessary, and which are not. With the daunting cost of some teaware, it can be hard for a beginner to know where to start. This guide will show you the basic utensils needed to brew matcha, as well as the household alternatives you probably have already.
The Chawan (Tea Bowl)
The first item you will need is a special bowl called a chawan. Although only a small amount of liquid will be brewed, a fair amount of room is required for proper whisking.
A chawan is around 5 inches (12.7cm) in diameter, and 3.5 inches (8.9cm) tall. The inside of the bowl usually has rounded edges that swoop down.
Although many of the common tea bowls fit this description, there are some different styles that do not resemble this.
If you do not have an actual chawan, a cereal bowl or small mixing bowl will work as a good substitute.
It is very important to sift your matcha before brewing it. It will prevent clumps from forming. There is a special kind of sifter made specifically for matcha, but a small, fine mesh strainer works equally well. (So well in fact, I don’t even have an actual Furui to take a picture of.)
Chasen (Tea Wisk)
The chasen is one of the most important utensils you will need for making matcha. In fact, there is no substitute for it. A chasen made for usucha, or “thin” matcha, (what you are probably brewing) will have around 100 tines. Made of bamboo, these tines are soft and pliable when wet.
A whisk made with only a handful of tines will not work. There aren’t many alternatives which have pliable – yet strong enough – tines for proper whisking. It is strongly recommended to get a chasen.
Chashaku (Tea Scoop)
A chashaku is used for scooping and measuring the amount of matcha you are about to use. Made of a thin piece of bamboo, the chashaku is usually around 7 inches (17.8cm) long. Often, in the middle of the length will be a nub from the section of bamboo stalk that the scoop was made from.
Any type of measuring spoon will work as an alternative.
Wrapping it Up
When it comes to matcha, there are a lot of specific tools used. However, with these few items, you will be able to brew an excellent bowl of matcha.