Blog

Micro Season 11 小暑 Shōsho (Lesser heat)

小暑 Shōsho (Lesser heat)
July 7–11 温風至 Atsukaze itaru Warm winds blow

July 12–16 蓮始開 Hasu hajimete hiraku First lotus blossoms

July 17–22 鷹乃学習 Taka sunawachi waza o narau Hawks learn to fly

Tanabata is the 7th day of the 7th month and is called the star festival . It is the reuniting of lovers Orihime and Hikoboshi or the stars Vega and Altair separated all but for one night a year by the Milky Way.
It is also custom to write wishes on coloured strips of paper called Tanzaku and hang them on bamboo, as the warm winds blow the Tanabata decorations flutter in the breeze.

It is also custom to eat somen noodles on this day as they are said to represent the Milky Way. Maybe this year you could write messages of health for family and friends. You could also make a simple somen dish like the one on my Tanabata summer recipes, on there you will find more information about Tanabata.

Marine Day ,Umi no Hi also known as Sea day or Ocean day. A Japanese national holiday which is celebrated on the 3rd Monday in July. I was lucky enough to visit Enoshima island for Marine day one year ( see travel posts Enoshima & Kamakura) . This day is to give thanks for the ocean . Many people flock to the beaches on this day. On my summer recipes I have created some no fish meals for you to enjoy.

This is how crowded the beaches get on Marine day. This was taken opposite Enoshima island.

Have you ever visited Japan in the summer? If you have or you live there you know how hot and humid it can be. I have visited Japan once around this time to experience the Summer fireworks and marine day at the beach. I also feel lucky to have seen the vast lotus flower ponds.


Every season in Japan is an important part of Japanese culture, summer is no exception. The winds blow in the smell of the Katori-Senko a mosquito repellent incense that you may well see burning inside a pottery pig with a big snout called Kayari-buta ( buta means pig in Japanese) it is a common site in the Japanese summer. The tinkling sound of wind bells or fuurin as they are known may be heard. Again giving a feeling of a cool breeze blowing . People may wear yukata and it is a popular time to dress in them for a Japanese summer festival or hanabi ( firework display ).

Remember to bring your Uchiwa a fan made of bamboo and paper it looks like a paddle it doesn’t fold.

The lotus only bloom for four days in the hot summer heat again like the cherry blossoms in spring showing that life is fleeting. I have fond memories of watching the dragonflies dance around the giant leaves and blooms both at the Hachiman-gu shrine in kamakura  and the giant Shinobazu pond at Ueno.

The root of the lotus ( Renkon) have a significant meaning often used in New Years meals as it represents a clear view through the year. Lotus root is super tasty and can be used in hot pots, curry’s and stirfrys  it is also nice as a pickle. Why not try making a meal with lotus root.
As I hear the cry’s of the hawks that fly above my house I’m missing Japan more and more and the thought of not being able to visit at this time is tough. I take solace in making food inspired by Japan, using Japanese ingredients I manage to find from Asian grocery stores. I try to see little bits of Japan in my every day life ( just the noise of a crow, smell of incense or the refreshment of Japanese tea). I like to celebrate and follow the seasonal traditions and customs when I can. Like making my Tanabata decorations. All these things help keep me close to Japan when I can’t be there in person. What do you do to feel close to Japan if you can’t be there ?

This years Tanabata decoration the Tanzaku this year have many wishes for health for the family. I wish you all good health.

 

 

 

 

Summer Food

Eggplant Agebitashi 茄子の揚げ浸し

Agebitashi means fried then soaked and that is basically what we are doing with this classic Japanese seasonal Summer vegetable dish. This recipe uses eggplant or nasu as it’s known in Japan but you could use a variety of colourful vegetables from green beans, okra, Shiitake mushrooms and zucchini to vibrant red, green and yellow bell peppers.

First you will need a kombu dashi, you can either just leave a piece of kombu over night in some water or place a piece of kombu in some water and let it simmer not boil for ten minutes. I recommend doing the latter for this as you are making a warm broth anyway to pour over the eggplant. If you do just remove the kombu before adding the rest of your broth ingredients.
It doesn’t matter what kind of eggplant you have but the long Asian variety are nice for colour and are not too fat, like the English variety.

The eggplant absorbs the flavours of the broth due to the special technique of cuts you make into the skin. This is called kakushibocho it also makes the eggplant more decorative.
First slice your eggplant in half long ways and then place each half cut side down on a cutting board. Start to make diagonal cuts across the skin of the the eggplant but do not go all the way through, make these cuts quite close together, you can even do them in a crisscrossed pattern if you wish.
Heat up some oil in a pan and fry your eggplant if they are to big you can cut them in half . You can use any neutral oil or sesame for extra flavour. Fry your eggplant for a few minutes and then transfer to a deep dish that will hold your broth. You can do the same with any other vegetables you want to use.
You will need about one cup of kombu dashi in a pan then  to that add three tablespoons each of mirin, tamari or soy sauce and sushi vinegar. Turn on the heat and add one tablespoon of sugar, heat the broth to dissolve the sugar, then pour over your vegetables or just eggplant on its own what ever you have fried.

This dish is better when left for at least a few hours to absorb the flavours or in the fridge over night. If I’m wanting this as an evening meal just make in the morning and leave in the fridge all day until you want to serve it. It’s nice warm or cold .

Transfer your vegetables to a dish and pour over some broth, to serve add some refreshing grated daikon and chopped green onion.

This meal is also nice with cold noodles with the broth poured over and the vegetables on top.

Summer Food

Warabi Mochi わらび餅

I first tried warabi Mochi when I visited Osaka castle. There was a food stall in the grounds selling matcha warabi mochi and it was displayed in a mountain with so much matcha I could smell it well away from the stall. ( if you have ever visited Uji you will know what I’m talking about).


When I managed to find some Mochi-Ko warabi Mochi powder in a store in London ( natural natural ) I knew I had to get it and try making it. It turned out just how I remembered it being in Japan ! This chewy jelly like Japanese dessert is a firm summer favourite, popular in the Kansai region and in Okinawa. It took me straight back to summer time in Japan. It’s funny how food, smells and sounds can take you back to a memory. I decided to make it the traditional way using kinako soybean flour and a kuromitsu (sugar syrup) to pour over.
Warabi Mochi is made from bracken starch. The Mochi-Ko I bought was a mixture of this and potato starch. All you need is the Mochi-ko, kinako, sugar, water and some kind of sugar syrup to drizzle over. I made mine from okinawan sugar and water but you could use molasses or brown sugar with water heated to thicken.

First gather your ingredients

3/4 cup of Mochi-Ko

1/2 cup of granulated sugar

250ml of water

and kinako soybean flour

You will need molasses or dark brown sugar to make a kuromitsu for pouring ( I suggest making this first so you can chill it in the fridge. Just add sugar and water to a pan heat until it thickens  and chill.

Dust a baking sheet with kinako , I also find that it’s a good idea to grind the warabi-ko into a finer powder.
Add the warabi-ko to a pan and add the sugar and water and give it a stir to combine. Turn up the heat and keep stirring until it starts to turn thicker and then turn down the heat a little. Keep stirring quite vigorously almost beating it until the mixture becomes more translucent. Keep doing this for at least five minutes then turn it out onto your kinako flour and dust more flour on the top. Place this in the fridge for ten minutes but do not leave it in there.

Take your Mochi out of the fridge and cut into squares

You can serve it straight away or you can keep it for up to two days in a sealed container at room temperature. When you want to serve you can chill it for ten minutes if you wish.
Serve with kuromitsu.

 

Blog

Japanese Micro Season 10 夏至 Geshi (Summer solstice)

夏至 Geshi (Summer solstice)

Summer solstice, the sun rises behind Mt Fuji and travels across the sky taking its longest path. This is the day with the most amount of daylight. Even though this marks the beginning of summer, now the days will slowly start to shorten . This time seams to occur between the planting and harvesting of crops.

June 21–26 乃東枯 Natsukarekusa karuru Self-heal withers

June 27–July 1 菖蒲華 Ayame hana saku Irises bloom

July 2–6 半夏生 Hange shōzu Crow-dipper sprouts

This is the time in Japan of hot humid rainy days, a time when people might not feel like preparing food so cooling food that’s easy to prepare would be eaten. Things like watery  fruits and vegetables cucumber and tomato to be eaten simply with cold noodles and a chilled broth. You could try zaru soba, cold soba noodles with a chilled dipping sauce. The name zaru refers to the sieve or strainer the cold noodles sit on. Often served with condiments like grated daikon, chopped green onion and sesame.

You could also try making a cold soba salad with a simple dressing and lots of watery vegetables.
Another meal that is popular in Hiyashi Chuka or cold ramen you can find the recipe for this on my summer recipes or just search Hiyashi Chuka.

People in Japan also like watery fruits in the summer. Large peaches are in season, melon is also very popular and is the quintessential hydrating summer dessert.  Maybe you could try my thirst quenching recipe for a melon drink on the summer recipes.

All across Japan at the moment the iris and the ajisai (hydrangea) are blooming. In the U.K. the hydrangea doesn’t bloom until later in the summer, but I did find some lovely iris on one of my evening walks and there were lots of small blue dragonflies darting around them.


The micro season calendar mentions the self heal or prunella a low growing creeping plant with clusters of violet coloured flowers. In Japan this plant blooms in the winter and withers in summer. Another plant mentioned is the crow dipper which is a thin green grass and they turn white in the summer.

At the end of June people in Japan like to eat a seasonal sweet called Minazuki. Made from kuzu starch and rice flour it is cut into a triangle shape and is said to resemble ice. It is topped with sweet red beans, the sweet is said to ward off evil and disease. You can find out more on my minazuki posts and also the recipe.

Summer Food

Minazuki Wagashi ( the Japanese sweet to eat in June)

I have talked a little about minazuki in a previous post but I thought you might like to try making this Japanese wagashi for yourself. It’s really easy to make with a few ingredients. This wagashi is traditionally eaten on June 30th to ward of evil, ill health and bad luck for the second part of the year. The colour of minazuki is said to resemble ice to cool you from the hot summer heat.
This makes x4 triangle pieces.

You will need a square container around 4×4 inches and something to steam the wagashi in (I used a bamboo steamer)
You will also need:

15g of kuzu root ( if it is not in a powder and more in chunks crush into a powder)

15g of  glutinous rice flour ( the kind for making dango )

30g of sifted plain white flour

30g of unrefined caster sugar

100ml of water

x1 can of sweet red beans

Combine the kuzu powder and dango flour then add a little of the water to make a paste, then add the rest and mix together. Then add in your flour and sugar and mix to combine.
Fill your container with water and tip it out ( this will just stop your wagashi from sticking ) then fill your container with your mixture, keeping a few tablespoons for later.

Place your container in a steamer and steamer over simmering water for about 20 minutes.

After this time take out your container from the steamer and add around 3/4 of the can of your sweet red beans to the top, spreading them out. Add the few spoonfuls of remains mixture you saved over the beans and pop back in the steamer for a further 10 minutes. Remove and allow to cool in the fridge. I then cut the wagashi while it was still in the container into x4 triangles and eased out the first piece, once you have one out the others are easily removed. I wouldn’t recommend tipping it upside down as you may spoil the look of your minazuki.
There you have it. They are nice enjoyed with a matcha tea you could even dust the top with matcha or kinako if you like.

Blog

Japanese Micro Season 9 芒種 Bōshu (Grain beards and seeds)

芒種 Bōshu (Grain beards and seeds)
June 6–10 蟷螂生 Kamakiri shōzu Praying mantises hatch

June 11–15 腐草為螢 Kusaretaru kusa hotaru to naru Rotten grass becomes fireflies

June 16–20 梅子黄 Ume no mi kibamu Plums turn yellow

Midway through the summer micro seasons the rice is planted in the wet paddy fields of Japan, their little stalks looking almost like the praying mantis. Fire flies start to dart around in the  early evening, a truly magical event. Japan’s rainy season will soon arrive . The rainy season is called Tsuyu meaning plum rain, the rain that falls when the plums are ripe for the picking. It is an important part of Japanese culture, harvesting the plums to be made into liquor or preserved in salt to make umeboshi. I have a few recipes on my recipe pages using umeboshi why not give them a try over this time. The sweet and sour tofu is a particular favourite, as is umeboshi onigiri.


In Japan over the rainy season you may see ghost like pieces of cloth hanging at windows these are called Teru Teru Bozu, they depict a weather monk and are said to be used to pray for a sunny day. Often children might hang them the day before an event or by farmers.
Rainy season is celebrated in Japan like any other and it is at this time the ajisai  (hydrangeas) bloom and many people go to the gardens to see them. If you would like to make my soup for the rainy you can also find that in my recipe section, a bright green soup to represent the lush vegetation at this time, you can also read more about places to see Ajisai on this post.


I am also thinking it might be a good time to set goals for the rest of the year. Planting that rice paddy and letting it grow ( metaphorically speaking ) . As many of us have been slowing down over the last few months let’s not be too eager to rush back into our old hectic lives. I know many of you like myself have been getting out  and enjoying nature more. I speak personally when I say it does indeed have a calming effect. Many people especially in the countryside of Japan enjoy the changing seasons and cook seasonal foods. Doing this can help us feel more connected to the earth. This is why many of my recipes are seasonal either enjoying produce of the time or relating to some Japanese custom of the year.  I think many of us tend to get lost in our everyday lives and I think as we start to move forward from this trying time of 2020 it would be nice to keep some of the slowness that we may have found. I hope that you might try making some Japanese food for yourself. Try to find some local seasonal produce, maybe choose a recipe you could use them in and set aside time to cook it. Do it in a peaceful environment. While your preparing the food think about who you are making the food for sending love and good energies into the food. This is a nice meditation that you can use while doing everyday tasks.

Autumn Food, Blog, Spring Food, Summer Food, Winter Food

Sesame Cookies


These cookies were a big hit, soft and chewy on the inside but a nice crisp outer. They make the perfect ice cream cookie sandwich, and have a lovely caramel flavour. Some of you on my Instagram account wanted to know the recipe so here you are.

This will make about 10 large cookies.

Preheat the oven to 150 ( moderate oven )

Mix in one bowl

1/2 cup of gluten-free oat flour

1/2 cup of chick pea flour (gram flour)

1/2 cup of coconut sugar

1 teaspoon of baking powder

2 tablespoons of White roasted ground sesame (suri goma shiro)

すりごま

If you are in Japan you maybe able to get this ground almond and sesame blend which is also a nice alternative.

Mix in a separate bowl

1/4 cup of maple syrup

1/3 cup of melted coconut butter

1 teaspoon of vanilla essence

2 tablespoons of sesame paste or tahini

1 tablespoon of water

Mix the wet ingredients into the dry and form a dough

Make balls from the dough and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. When you have used all the dough flatten them out with you hands and then if you like make a pattern with a fork.

Sprinkle with some toasted sesames and place in the oven for 15-20 minutes.

Take out the oven and leave to harden and cool.


Enjoy!

 

 

Blog

Japanese Micro Season 8 小満 Shōman (Lesser ripening)

小満 Shōman (Lesser ripening)
May 21–25 蚕起食桑 Kaiko okite kuwa o hamu Silkworms start feasting on mulberry leaves

May 26–30 紅花栄 Benibana sakau Safflowers bloom

May 31–June 5 麦秋至 Mugi no toki itaru Wheat ripens and is harvested

The summer heat is starting to be felt now as temperatures rise in Japan. There is a vibrant spurt of growth in the fields.
Safflowers blooms are picked to make natural  textile dyes ranging from yellow to red in colour.

Towards the end of this micro season the wheat is harvested. People often forget that wheat is important in Japanese cooking because rice takes the forefront. However we must remember that noodles are made from wheat so we would have no ramen, somen, or udon without it. Also we have the barley to make barley miso or barley tea known as mugi cha, I particularly like this one by Sabo it is an organic roasted  barley that is loose instead of in a teabag form.


Of course beer is very popular in the hot summers of Japan with Asahi, Ebisu, Kirin, and Sapporo beer springing to mind. Do you have a favourite Japanese beer brand ?
As the temperatures start to rise cold noodles are enjoyed why not make Hiyashi Chuka a dish of cold ramen with various toppings and a dressing. It’s nice to choose refreshing vegetables for your ramen like cucumber and tomato, bell peppers and sweetcorn maybe. Then a dressing made with soy sauce and vinegar. I have a recipe on my pages with a lovely refreshing dressing. You could also make Tsukemen or dipping ramen. Ramen is dipped into a hot soup. Somen noodles are very much a favourite of summer in Japan

The noodles are very fine and are normally served chilled with ice and condiments for dipping and serving. Again I have a recipe on my pages for somen dishes.
I hope that over the summer you can try making a chilled noodle dish for yourself.

Blog, Spring Food, Summer Food

Yoshoku Caponata

A few years ago I had Caponata in a vegan cafe in Tokyo. Caponata is actually a Sicilian dish and is basically an eggplant hotpot stew. I decided to to make this recipe with a Japanese fusion. When you do this it is called a Yoshoku meaning western Japanese food. I set out to make this sweet and sour Sicilian classic using some Japanese ingredients.

The first thing is salted eggplant, I sliced 1/2 an eggplant in to thick rounds and then divided them into quarters. I then rubbed in Shio koji which is a fermented condiment in Japan made from salted rice malt.


I left the eggplant for ten minutes then added it to a pan with some olive oil and started to sauté. Then I added a stick of celery chopped finely and half a chopped onion. Then I added a tablespoon of mirin, Japanese brown rice vinegar and sugar along with a tablespoon of Yuzu juice. The Yuzu juice will give the sauce a nice citrus taste, I then added one tin of chopped tomatoes. Capers are normally added to this recipe so instead I added a teaspoon of sansho berries. Sansho is a Japanese pepper the green berries come precooked in a jar. They have a citrus fragrance the green berries are a quintessential spring Kyoto being used in the autumn ground into powdered spice.

I then added a tablespoon each of pitted black and green olives and turned down the heat of the pan put on the lid and let in gently simmer for 30 mins.

This dish is very versatile can be eaten over rice Caponata donburi, or cold on a crusty sourdough. How about using it as a topping for jacket potato or pasta, even as an inari filling.

Here I have served it with rice and a salad. Finishing off with a sprinkle of pine nuts some lemon rind and basil.


Autumn Food, Blog, Spring Food, Summer Food, Winter Food

Midnight Diner Tokyo Stories Plum Rice Ball

Episode 3 of season 2 sees Master the owner of the diner Meishiya make plum rice balls for a customer. The series is so heart warming and shows how food has the ability to not only to connect people but to bring back memories. One such memory for me was one Marine day ( a public holiday held on third Monday in July in Japan where many people head off to the coast). We had started our train journey over to Enoshima island in Kanagawa Prefecture and there were lots of families on the train. On the opposite seat was a family the mother got out a neatly packed bento and untied the furoshiki around it. Opening the lid she started to take out onigiri those triangle shaped rice balls wrapped in nori sometimes with a filling, she handed them to her children. The onigiri filled the hands of the small children and I remember how happy there faces were to be eating such a breakfast on the way to the seaside. Onigiri ( rice balls ) are perfect for picnics or in the case of the Midnight diner an evening snack.
The pickled plums used in the series were the hard type called Ko ume, as I only had umeboshi I used those instead. Umeboshi are slightly squashy which are dried and salted plums. They are tart and tangy and I must admit to not liking them at first but now I love them. They have been used in Japan to aid digestion and are a good way to keep the rice fresh for a few hours.

Cook up some Japanese rice and chop up an umeboshi plum. When the rice is done fold in your umeboshi ( I also added some furikake with sesame and dried daikon greens to give it a little colour ).

Wet your hands and make a ball of rice then start to mould the rice by pressing the rice into a point, then rotate the ball pressing it into that onigiri shape.

Do not put in the fridge as they will go hard, the umeboshi will help to keep them fresh for a few hours, if you want just put a damp cloth over them. When your ready to eat them I find a strip of nori ( dried seaweed) makes them easier to hold.

I like to toast my nori in the oven to make it extra crispy. The crunch of the nori and the soft rice then the tang of the umeboshi, just takes me right back to Japan, and for me that is one of the  reasons I make Japanese food.

They are nice just simply served on their own with a sake or a miso soup.

 

Autumn Food, Blog, Spring Food, Summer Food, Winter Food

Kiriboshi Don ( rice bowl with daikon )

Daikon means big root, and boy do they grow big in Japan. I love going to the Japanese markets and seeing all the fresh produce there grown by local farmers.

Daikon has to be one of my favourite vegetables, although not originally native to Japan it is now Japan’s most widely cultivated vegetable. In season mainly from autumn to spring you can pretty much pick them up all year round in Japan. Daikon is good for the digestion and is such a versatile ingredients in cooking. I often manage to get mooli which is the most similar but they are never quite the same as the ones in Japan. Daikon has a light peppery flavour and when cooked in broth soaks up lots of flavour, I particularly like them in winter hot pot dishes. It can be eaten raw, simmered, fried, pickled and dried. Dried is known as kiriboshi daikon 切り干し大根 and this is what I will be using in this recipe. Kiriboshi translates to cut 切りand dry 干しin Japanese. It is basically daikon 大根 that has been shredded and traditionally left out to dry in the sun. Preserving daikon in this way has been popular since the Edo period ( 1603-1868). The daikon becomes sweeter when dried, packed with umami flavour. Drying  also concentrates the fibre and mineral content making it a good source of calcium and iron.

This is normally how you will buy kiriboshi daikon. You may see the words Singiri ぜんざい written in Japanese on the packet this means julienne in English, vegetable cut into strips . This is what I will be using for the simple but tasty rice kiriboshi don ( rice bowl ).

First take a handful of the dried daikon and wash it in a sieve under running water. Then place in a bowl and add warm water, leave to rehydrate for around 15 mins. To make this dish I used Arame seaweed. This is a species of kelp and looks a little similar to Hijiki. It comes dried so you need to do the same to this as the kiriboshi wash and leave to rehydrate. Unlike the daikon when it is rehydrated you will need to simmer the Arame in boiling water for about 20 mins.
Now your daikon is rehydrated you will notice the liquid that it is in has turned yellow. Drain off the liquid but retain it in a jug squeezing any excess liquid out the daikon also into the jug placing your daikon in a bowl.When you have your Arame simmered and drained add this to your daikon in a bowl. Add to your bowl with the daikon and Arame, a tablespoon of mirin and a tablespoon of tamari. Leave while you prepare your rice. Take a rice cooker cup of sushi rice and wash it until the water runs clear. Add this to your rice cooker and add two cups of your daikon liquid, top up with extra water if needed. Then add the juice of fresh grated ginger I used about an inch piece and a small piece of kombu again only a few inches. Let this soak for around 20 mins and then remove the kombu. Put your rice cooker on cook and prepare your kiriboshi and Arame by sautéing in toasted sesame oil, I added some extra chopped negi ( green onion ) for a little colour.
When your rice is done spoon into a bowl and add your sautéed kiriboshi on top. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and if you have any  ground black sesame salt. The rice has taken on the delicious flavour of the sweet daikon and ginger, it makes for a nutritious and filling meal that’s full of umami.

Autumn Food, Blog, Spring Food, Summer Food, Winter Food

Midnight Diner Tokyo Stories Season 2 Episode 8 Curry Ramen

I have been loving watching Midnight Diner Tokyo Stories, about a diner in the night life district of Shinjuku Tokyo called Meshiya, open from midnight to 7am. The owner the customers call Master, maybe asked to make food that the customer has a special relationship with. It may remind them of someone, a feeling or home. I’m sure any of us that have been to Japan can relate to this. Myself included, this was why I started making Japanese food in the first place. There is something comforting about a bowl of ramen but when asked to make this particular one, Master and the others in the diner find it quite unusual. Ramen+curry+cheese. It’s actually a girl Hinano who asks for the cheese on top. I decided I wanted to try to recreate this Midnight Diner Tokyo Stories recipe for myself.

The master used shio ramen or salt ramen but I used the packet that came with my vegan ramen which was umami rich.

The master also used meat in his curry, if I’d of had maitake mushrooms I think I would of used them in this meal but I didn’t have them so I just made the traditional curry from potato, carrot and onion.
I first roughly peeled and chopped half an onion, a carrot and a potato this was enough for two portions of curry. Then peel and grate finely one apple.

Sauté them in some oil, if you have maitake then add it here also. Then add kombu dashi enough to cover the vegetables. Kombu dashi can be made by soaking a piece of kombu kelp over night in water or you can simmer the kombu for ten minutes in water if you have not soaked it over night.
Then add a tablespoon of tamari or soy sauce, a tablespoon of tomato ketchup, a tablespoon of mirin and a dashi of vegan Worcestershire sauce. Let this simmer until the vegetables are tender but not falling apart, add a little more dashi when simmering if needed. Then get some of the broth with a ladle and put it in a bowl add to this half a block of curry roux cubes and dissolve, then add this to your curry, stirring as it thicken. I also added a tablespoon of S&B Japanese curry spice. You can add this also if you have it.

Make your ramen noodles as instructed. Using the broth that your ramen has been cooked in with the sachet of seasoning  add to a bowl some ramen broth and the cooked ramen noodles. Then add your curry. Top with vegan cheese, I used daiya mozzarella and I added a sprinkle of parsley for colour. I must say I have never added cheese before but the three together made the most delicious meal. I hope you try it out.

Blog

Oaty Kinako & Sesame Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Back in 20016 I posted a recipe for Oaty Pecan cookies.  This is another cookie recipe inspired by that one with instead of nuts I added kinako and white sesame paste to give the cookies flavour.

In one bowl add

1/2 cup of almond flour

1/3 cup of Kinako ( soy bean flour )

1 cup of oats ( I use raw sprouted gluten-free oats )

1/2 teaspoon baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

a pinch of salt

1/2 cup of coconut palm sugar

In another bowl add

1 flax egg ( one tablespoon of flax meal with x3 tablespoon of water mixed and allow to set in the fridge )

1 tablespoon of maple syrup

1/4 cup of coconut oil / melted coconut butter

1 tablespoon of sesame paste or light tahini

( you will also need 1/2 bar of chocolate ) I used a raw Ombar and chopped it into chunks.

When you flax meal is set add this to your wet ingredients and mix then add this to your dry to form a dough. Add your chopped chocolate chunks. It takes a little time to work everything together.
take spoonfuls of dough and roll into a ball and place them on parchment paper on a baking sheet then flatten them out. Depending on how big you want your cookies I made 8 in total .

Place in a moderate oven around 150c for 15 – 20 mins.
Remove and allow to cool.

They are lovely and crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.

The sesame and kinako gives the cookies a lovely nutty flavour.