Raspberry & Chocolate Square

Valentine’s Day has arrived. I have introduced my ‘Raspberry Chocolate Heart’ for this special day in my previous post. Whilst making the Chocolate Heart I got an idea for improving the look of the sweet.

Raspberry & Chocolate Square, Wagashi

This is it! It is using exactly the same ingredients with the previous Raspberry Chocolate Heart but I made it into a little more western sweet look.

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Instead of making the shape into a heart, I placed a pink heart on top.

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Raspberry Chocolate Heart on the Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is coming. Surely the sweet on the Day has to be Chocolate. According to me, if it is Chocolate sweet the flavour should be Raspberry.

So I made Japanese sweet iwith Chocolate and Raspberry flavour.

Raspberry Chocolate Heart, Wagashi

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I have to remind you that this is not a normal Chocolate sweet. It is still a Japanese sweet ‘Wagashi’ with Chocolate flavour. So the ingredients of the outer part is mainly White Beans with Chocolate Powder.

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Camellia

It is usually ‘Red’ that I see as the first colour in my garden at the start of every New Year. It is the flowers of Camellia we have at the very back of the garden. Dots of the deep red are the sparkles which brighten up the garden in wet and gloomy days but the shrub hasn’t had the colour yet this year. It has many flower buds waiting to open but they are still tightly closed. Maybe it’s because of the mild winter this season. Only recently we have started having normal cold weather. Nature is sensitive to climate change so my Camellia shrub must have been a little confused.

By hoping to see my Camellia Red soon, I made some sweets in the shape of the flower.

Camellia, Nerikiri

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It is Japanese sweet called ‘Nerikiri‘. I made a Red flower with a white tinge and a white one with a red tinge.

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Purple Magic Cake

Here’s the thing, I had some Purple Sweet Potato (Ube) and Soy Milk (made by me) at home. I wanted to use them and make something tasty for tea time. I started cooking Purple Sweet Potato into purée and then I came up with the image of soft purple cream oozing out of soft sponge when you put a fork into it … That was the moment I decided to make a ‘Purple Magic Cake with Soy Milk’.

You might be wondering ‘What is a Magic Cake?’ OK, I explain. A Magic Cake is a custardy moist spongy cake made with whipped Egg and quite large quantities of liquid. When you bake it comes out in three layers with a very light spongy top layer, soft and moist middle layer and creamy custardy base layer.

I have put a recipe of a type of Magic Cake almost a year ago on this Blog. That was ‘Sake Soufflé Quiche with Figs & Pine Nuts’ which I received the Second Award in the Sake Cooking Competition with that recipe last year.

My experiment went on ….

Purple Magic Cake with Sweet Potato & Soy Milk

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Sho-Chiku-Bai  

Have you heard about ‘Sho Chiku Bai‘? You might think “Yes, it’s a ‘Sake’, isn’t it?. That is correct, but there is an origin that the company named their sake with that name. ‘Sho-Chiku-Bai‘ means ‘Pine Tree – Bamboo – Plum Blossom’ in Japanese in this order. They are the three objects Japanese think very auspicious so that we use an image of these three a lot for happy occasion such as a wedding and during New Year period.

I wanted to make some kind of sweet based on ‘Sho-Chiku-Bai’ and came up to this idea.

Sho – Chiku –  Bai

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It is made of a type of Japanese Sweet called ‘Nerikiri‘ and not marzipan which you might think it looks like.

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The main ingredients are Beans, Sugar and Rice Flour. It is very simple but through a lot of complicated process.

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Petal Mochi (Hanabira Mochi)

Happy New Year to you all again!  Hope you had great Christmas and New Year’s Day. The first sweet I would like to introduce you in 2017 is this sweet called ‘Hanabira Mochi‘.

Petal Mochi (Hanabira Mochi)

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Hanabira‘ means flower petal in Japanese so I shall call this sweet Petal Mochi.

It is a sweet we traditionaly have only during New Year period. It started in the palace to celebrate a New Year by eating two layers of white and red mochi with some other food. Until the Meiji period the custom spread out to people in the country and the food got simplified onto some similar type of sweet that I made here.

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Sweet ‘Mochi Snowman’ ⛄

This year we are having very mild winter in England. We hardly need to heat rooms during daytime and wear gloves outside. So it is very unlikely that we are going to have a White Christmas. Although it is not cold, in my mind “Winter = Snow” so another sweet I made in the Winter theme was this one.

Mochi Snowman

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It is made of ‘Mochi‘ Rice Cake type of sweet.

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