Blog, Winter Food

Matcha Chocolate Chip Cookies

As I have just started a new job on my days off I like to make treats for when I’m working in the week .

I made these yummy choc chip matcha cookies which are perfect as an afternoon snack .

you will need

in one bowl

1 cup oat flour

2/3 cup almond flour ( meal )

1 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder

1 heaped teaspoon matcha powder

A good handful of vegan chocolate chips


in another bowl

1/4 cup of melted coconut butter / oil

1/2 cup of maple syrup

1-2 tablespoons of water add 1 to start with

Add wet ingredients to try to form a dough

Tip out onto some plastic wrap and form into a ball and place into the freezer for ten mins to firm up.

Take your dough out the freezer and place on a surface  lined with parchment paper, roll out your dough ( I tend to do this whilst it’s still inside the plastic wrap so nothing sticks ). When your dough is flat cut out your cookies with a cutter and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. You can keep reusing up your dough until it’s all gone . Put your cookies in the oven for 10 mins . Leave to cool and enjoy.


Three Healthy Japanese Drinks To Help Keep You Cool

Three healthy Japanese summer time drinks to help you keep your cool.
If any of you live in Japan or have been to Japan in the summer then you know how hot and humid it can get. Here are a few drinks to help you chill in hot weather.

The first is Soba Cha
By infusing roasted buckwheat kernels in hot water you can make a delicious gluten free and caffeine free drink which is refreshing also chilled.
There are a number of health benefits that go with drinking Soba Cha from improved blood flow ( which could help with varicose veins) to helping reduce blood sugar and treating diabetes. It is said to help improve your immune system and an aid in weight loss. I think this has to be one of my favourites all you need is to steep one teaspoon of kernels to one mug of water and drink hot or chill for a nice refreshing summer drink over ice.

The next is Mugi-Cha or toasted barley tea
This is only a caffeine free drink so if your sensitive to gluten it’s better to stick to the Soba Cha or Matcha.
This is another very popular drink in the summer in Japan. And you can often find it amongst the chilled green teas in bottles in the vending machines all over Japan for a quick rehydrating drink in the hot humid Japanese summers.
It is just as nice to have a jug of ice cold Mugi Cha in the fridge at home to have if the weather gets warm. You can buy Mugi Cha in different ways but the most convenient for making it yourself is with tea bags. You can either use hot water and one tea bag steeped in a jug of water and let it go cold before putting it in the fridge ( I find this makes a stronger tea so you can dilute to taste ) or just cold brew one teabag in a jug of cold water in the fridge . When your ready just add ice.
This tea has been said to reduce stress, it also has antibacterial properties and is good for helping fight tooth cavities. Like the Soba Cha it’s good for cholesterol and also helps with aiding digestion.

Did you know that matcha is Japan’s superfood?
The ceremonial one is the finest vibrant green and is not bitter and has a smooth taste. I like to buy organic and the finest young tea buds are picked then dried and ground in a granite mortar into a very fine powder. Having a matcha powder you are having the whole leaf so is much more concentrated where as in other teas you brew the leaf and then disgard. To enjoy an ice cold matcha simply put a teaspoon of sifted matcha into a lidded container and add cold water with ice, put your lid on and give it a good shake. I’ve spoken many times on my Instagram account about the benefits of matcha with it being high in antioxidants and flavanols which are thought to protect the immune system and brain. Matcha is also high in theanine an amino acid which can have a calming effect and help with focus and concentration. No wonder the Buddhist monks in Japan like to drink it

Summer Food

Matcha Smoothie & Granola Bowl

We all know by now that matcha is finely ground whole tea so you are getting all the natural compounds associated with it. From flavanols thought to protect the immune system to the amino acids that have a relaxing and calming effect on the mind and help aid concentration.
So there is no better way to kick start your morning than with a dose of a whole leaf matcha tea smoothie and matcha granola.
I particularly think this is a nice one to make on a weekend to help you unwind after the week.
First let’s make that crunchy chewy granola .
All you need is a cup of oats (I like to use raw gluten free sprouted oats by rude health organic) Add the oats to a bowl.
Then you will need a tablespoon of melted coconut butter (I use Tiana organic) sift a teaspoon of matcha or a Clearspring matcha shot into a small bowl and pour in your melted butter and give it a good stir.
Add this to your oats and stir it in. Then I like to add a few pumpkin seeds sunflower seeds chia seeds and flax seeds but you can use what ever you have.
Give that a stir and then add a little sweetener if you like around a teaspoon of maple or rice syrup.
At this point I turn the oats and seed matcha mixture out onto some parchment paper and bake for ten mins in a moderate oven keep and eye on it you don’t want it to burn. This is why I like to add my nuts and dried fruit after. When your matcha oats are golden you can now tip it into a bowl and add the rest of your ingredients. I added some broken pecan and walnuts a few goji and dried cranberries berries and some flaked almonds to mine but feel free to use what ever you like.
Give it a good stir and your granola is done.
Now for your creamy smoothie.
I always try to think ahead so if I’m thinking of having this on a Sunday morning then I would freeze two sliced banana the night before. I always slice mine and lay them out flat on parchment paper wrap them up and freeze them that way they do not stick together and they are easily blended (my food processor is a pretty cheap one so not very powerful)
Blend up your banana until it resembles crumbs then sift in one heap teaspoon of matcha put your lid back on and give it a few pulses. Then add some plant based milk,for my smoothies I always like fresh organic almond milk but you can use soy if you wish. Add around 1/2 a cup and keep pulsing stopping to scrape the bottom and sides then give it a good final blend so it’s all creamy. Tip out into a bowl add your granola and some fruit topping and enjoy the wellbeing of matcha.

Summer Food

Matcha biscotti

I love to use matcha in my baking and this recipe was a little bit of trial and error but it came out well so I thought you would like to make them also.

In one bowl add

1 and 1/2 cup of oat flour

2 tablespoons of sifted cooking matcha (lower grade)

2 teaspoons of baking powder

1 heaped tablespoon of chopped candied yuzu peel

( add more if you prefer)

in another bowl add

1 tablespoon of mashed banana or apple purée

1/2 cup of unrefined sugar

1/4 cup of melted coconut butter

two tablespoons of water

add the wet mixture to the dry to form a dough.

if the dough is to wet add more flour to dry add a little more water

form into a log shape and flatten to around  two inches .

This mkes four long thick biscotti

bake in the oven until golden then take out and leave to cool completely  ( if you don’t it will crumble when you cut it)

cut into four slices using a sharp knife and turn onto their sides and bake again for a further ten mins.

Take out the oven and leave to cool completely before storing .

( if you store before they are cool they will go soft) I often wrap mine in foil and freeze them .

Enjoy with a good coffee.


Summer Food

Matcha chia pudding

A really filling breakfast is chia pudding made from chia seeds . Chia seeds aid digestion and are high in omega- 3 essential fats. They are also high in fiber so help keep you full until lunch. Because of this they help to balance insulin levels. When you add liquid to chia seeds they become a gel. All you will need to make chia pudding is two tablespoon of chia seeds mixed with one seaspoon of sifted matcha powder and one cup of plant based milk. Add this to a jar and put on the lid and give it a good shake making sure all the chia seeds are not stuck to the bottom of the jar. You can also add a little sweetener if you wish like maple syrup or rice syrup. Put your jar in the fridge and check it after half an hour giving it another shake. I now leave the jar over night so it will be ready for breakfast the next morning.

In the morning spoon out your chia pudding and add to it what you like. To mine I made a parfait with organic soy yogurt and you could add fruit or granola if you wish .




As you know I love matcha .
Now Clearspring have brought out these handy matcha shots with just the right amount inside to make that perfect matcha . These are great for on the go .
And because Clearspring only use organic matcha from Uji you know it’s going to taste lovely and smooth.
I like matcha because it’s the whole tea so your getting all the natural compounds and antioxidants and flavanols associated with having benefits for the immune system . Matcha also has theanine which is an amino acid that is relaxing and calming and great for concentration so these matcha shots make a great pic me up to take to work . Or why not add one to a smoothie or bottle of ice water ? Just shake and go to Super power your day.

抹茶外出先のために ????

Blog, Spring Food


The bi-annual days of the vernal equinox are nearly upon us. In Japan it is a Buddhist festival known as higan. In the spring it is known as haru no higan . To celebrate I made Botamochi. This is a traditional confectionery made of sweet mochi rice pounded and shaped with a red bean centre . It is traditional to take these with flowers and incense to the graves of ancestors at this time. In the spring the sweets are called Botamochi named after the tree peony botan . In the fall the same sweets are called ohagi named after the clover bush hagi. I covered mine with different toppings matcha,kinako and black sesame . I also made a reverse one with the rice on the inside . Spring is nearly here . ぼたもち (牡丹餅) (おはぎ) 私は春分点のために作った ほぼ春です!

This is how to make your very own ( it takes a little time but is well worth the effort !)

1 cup of Japanese rice

1 cup of mochi rice

plastic wrap

tsubu-an ( bean paste )

toppings  matcha powder,kinako ground black sesame powder

first wash your rice together really well changing the water a few times

place in your rice cooker with water up to level 2 and cook until done

then pound your rice I use the end of a rolling pin until some it’s mashed but still has some grain don’t over pound or it will be to sticky mix it as your pounding in between with your rice paddle so it’s even.

take about 70g of rice if your having rice on the outside and make balls of these in plastic wrap . Flatten each one spreading it out. Measure out balls of bean paste 30g and place in the middle of each flattened out ball ( mould  the rice around the bean paste .

If you want to do a reverse 40g rice and 60g red bean paste .

when they are all done roll them in your chosen topping .

I like to then wrap each one in plastic wrap and freeze them and defrost over night ( great for a bento dessert ) .


Blog, Spring Food

Matcha yuzu chocolate truffles

Matcha yuzu chocolate truffles
Matcha yuzu chocolate truffles
Matcha yuzu chocolate truffles
Matcha yuzu chocolate truffles

Japanese matcha yuzu chocolate truffles
Blend all together in a food processor the following
1/2 avocado
1 teaspoon of sifted matcha powder
1 tablespoon rice syrup
Pinch of Himalayan pink salt
1/2 tea spoon of vanilla powder or extract

Scoop out the mixture into some silicone chocolate moulds and put in the freezer and leave over night
Melt one vegan chocolate bar of your choice in a bowl over hot water add one teaspoon of Japanese fresh yuzu juice .
Take your truffles out the freezer
Pop your truffles out of the tray and coat each one in chocolate and put on parchment paper .
Top with chopped candied yuzu peel .
Put back in the freezer to set
When you want them take them out and allow to thaw for 10 mins before eating .
Keep in the fridge ( if they last that long )
This makes about 6-8 truffles depending on your avocado size .


Creamy matcha latte

My morning matcha latte is like a mini morning ritual.
Opening the can of matcha the smell transports my mind back to the streets of Uji . The grinding of the tea and the smell of matcha in the air.
The sifting of the tea and whisking is almost like meditation.
A calmness .
Matcha is said to bring calm to the mind.

To make a matcha latte all you will need is

1/2 teaspoon of sifted good quality ceremonial grade matcha

half a cup of water at 70 degrees ( not boiling )

half a cup of plant milk of choice ( I normally use soy milk)

sweetner if desired ( maple syrup, rice syrup etc )

you will also need a whisk ( traditionally a bamboo whisk is used but for just making your morning matcha a battery operated hand milk frothier will do just as well )

First warm your plant based milk .

Sift  you matcha through a sieve into your cup and add half a cup of water add sweetener ( if any ) and whisk well .

whisk your milk and pour into your cup slowly adding froth at the end ( a bit more like a matcha cappuccino really ).

Maybe add a little sifted matcha on top .

sit back relax and enjoy


Asparagus Sushi Rolls

Spring time asparagus sushi rolls with ponzu dipping sauce to day for lunch . A yuzu green tea and azuki bean chocolate brownie with matcha .


Ogura Toast

Ogura Toast
Ogura Toast
Ogura Toast
Ogura Toast
Ogura Toast

Good morning
Ogura toast with home made anko,coconut yogurt ( instead of the normal cream) and strawberry flowers . A latte and some grapefruit and orange segments on the side .
Nagoya specialty dish with warm toasted bread, topped with red bean paste is my Japanese-theme breakfast to day.
Have a wonderful day everyone.
Ogura Toast 小倉トースト


Hina-Matsuri Donuts

In Japan it is already March! ?
On the 3rd of March in Japan is the Festival called Hina-matsuri ?also called ( girls day or dolls day)
Parents celebrate their daughters happiness and good health.
It is traditional to display ceremonial dolls. Sometimes the dolls are past down for generations.
There are a lot of special foods associated with Hina-matsuri, so over the next three days I will be showing you some of my special foods to celebrate.
Everyone is making pancakes to day in the UK for pancake day but I wanted to start on my special foods starting with these yuzu donuts dipped in white vegan and matcha chocolate .
I chose these colours as they are significant for girls day .
White for purification
Green for health and
Pink for luck
I made the flowers out of marzipan and used beetroot to make the colour.


Ginger Flower Cookies

In Japan before Sakura comes the plum blossom (ume)
People in Japan highly value this blossom and this weekend at
Kitano Tenmangu shrine they have their plum blossom festival with over 2000 plum trees what a wonderful site . This is called Ume Matsuri and they hold out door tea ceremonies .
To celebrate in my own way I made some ginger flower cookies ( kind of plum blossom shaped )
I dipped them in chocolate and coated them with chopped pistachio. Enjoying one with a matcha latte.
If you are lucky enough to visit Kyoto for plum blossom season there are other places like the Kyoto imperial palace and Nijo castle that are also worth a visit .
Happy plum blossom viewing .