What would you make when you have only one stick of rhubarb in your refrigerator? Most of the time I cook rhubarb with some apples and dried fruits and make some compote to go with vanilla ice cream or plain yogurt, but one stick of rhubarb? Surely it is too small quantity to make a dessert. Rhubarb contains lots of moisture and that is why it is suitable to use for making compote. I thought it would be great if I could use the juice from it to moisten a cake.
In my mind rhubarb is also strongly connected with crumble, so I got the image that juicy rhubarb compote on top of a well baked cake with a cluster of crumble on the top too … So basically I decided making a cake with compote and crumble, with everything combined together 🎂
Apple & Rhubarb Coconut Crumble 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
It has been for quite a while since Coconut Oil became popular in the world. People say it is much healthier than any other vegetable oil or Butter. I was trying not to ride on this trend but just recently one pot of Coconut Oil has appeared on my kitchen shelf. So I have to start going into the usual mission of searching for healthy but tasty things.
Banana & Coconut Dairy-free Cake
I have tried using Coconut Oil for cooking before but this cake was my first attempt for making sweet with it.
I like foraging. Although I hardly do any foraging myself I like the idea of it. Of course I hate the recent new foragers who never consider how nature’s cycle works and remove all mushrooms they can find from the area even before mushrooms open the umbrella. It is becoming a great threat to forests in the UK. That is outrageous! Nothing remains in the forest if people keep doing this.
That is not what I do. My foraging is much more in a smaller scale … such as Blackberry Picking. However, it does not seem a good season for Blackberry this year. It might be the problem where I live but I could get only handful of them.
Anyway, there is a sweet I always make in Blackberry season.
Blackberry Custard Tart
I was eagerly waiting for Sping to arrive for so long. I felt winter lasted forever but now it is spring. I see lots of posts of Sakura🌸 Cherry blossoms on Social Media Network particularly from Japan. In London Cherry blossom has started to open too. Some has flowered even in March by being confused with the strange weather this year. It is the season I like the most.
Although it is supposed to be a cheerful season it started to be rainy this week in England. When I see a grey sky I need some sweet that reassures me it is spring. The Colour scheme of the sweet came into my mind first – Pink! Then I thought of Strawberry Jam. I know Strawberry is a summer fruit in England but the Strawberry in my mind is light pink not that vivid red of summer Strawberry.
I know the Easter has gone, but never mind.
I like making bread. My love in bread making started from making Hot Cross Buns several years ago. Since then I always make some Hot Cross Buns during Easter time. Although I said that I did not have enough time to make any special sweet for the Easter in my previous post I managed to make Hot Cross Buns. Without Hot Cross Buns Spring never comes to my kitchen.
In normal Hot Cross Buns I like to add several spices and orange zest. I love the smell when you toast it. However, this time I did it differently. I made “Matcha Hot Cross Buns”.
Matcha Hot Cross Buns
Do you know ‘Houjicha’? It is Roasted Green Tea which is Japanese Tea with a marvellous aromatic scent. I enjoy having it when I want to relax and cleanse my body. Although it is Green Tea, it looks quite brown because it’s roasted.
I normally use loose leaves for making tea but recently I’ve got this lovely powdered Houjicha. The tea leaves were very finely ground and has kept the wonderful aroma and taste. This powdered type is quite a new thing for me and even in Japan (I think). I found it is great that you can add it into whatever you want to make without brewing tea.
Powdered Houjicha & Houjicha loose tea
I have been trying to use this powder in several ways and in order to enjoy its aroma at the maximum in the finished products I think it is the best using it without heating. The scent is so good that I don’t want to lose any during the cooking process. I think ingredients also should be limited. You know what they say; “Simple is Best!”
Melting Moments with Houjicha Cream
Yes, yes another ‘Soufflé’ type food. Since the Sake Cooking Competition I like making soufflé. Its very soft light & smooth texture has the luxurious quality.
I also like Pancake. So why don’t I mix the two things I like together? I wanted it to have a custardy flavour so I did not add anything to the basic ingredients except for Vanilla extract.
If it’s a Vanilla flavoured soft sweet … it should be with Strawberries, right?
Soufflé Pancake with Strawberry Sauce
It’s ‘Pancake Day’ today! It is not familiar Day for Japanese but I know it comes every year near Springtime.
So, what is Pancake Day?
Pancake Day is also called Pancake Tuesday or Shrove Tuesday. It is a day before the start of Lent which is the period of 40 days leading to Easter. As you can guess I am not Christian so this is the maximum I can explain about this day. What I understand is that the Pancake day is the day people try to use up all their eggs, fat and sugar in order to clear up the cupboards at home before another feasting period (Easter).
What they do?
People make Pancakes! That is the main thing. There are some festivals and people race with a frying pan on one hand flipping pancake whilst running. It’s a fun day. On social media I saw someone who lives locally asking where is a cafe that serves good pancakes. I guess it is great to know where a good cafe is but what I can’t understand is why this person doesn’t make Pancakes herself? Originally that is what this day is for, isn’t it? And it is not difficult to make a pancake either. You just need basic ingredients of eggs, sugar and flour.
So I made my own pancakes. In my kitchen it cannot be a normal pancake. It has to be a Pancake in Japanese style. I made ‘Dorayaki‘ with ‘Matcha‘ Green Tea flavour.
So I am going to have a stall in two markets, one is on the 6th (Sun) and the other on the 13th (Sun) of December. Both are in North London. I will be very happy if anybody who lives nearby wants to try out my Japanese/Japanese-Western fusion Sweets and come to see me there. 🙂
The market venue and the date are fixed but the thing which is not fixed yet is what I should bring to those markets – my products.
There is so much demand for Gluten free food these days and I have been developing some. Luckily many of Japanese sweets are originally Gluten free and Dairy free.
Gluten Free Kinako Shortbread with Sesame Seeds
I have this signature biscuit “Kinako Shortbread‘ which is the Shortbread with Japanese ingredient ‘Kinako‘ and white sesame seeds. I know it tastes good and I have sold it before. So I want to try changing it into Gluten Free biscuit this time.