I love mixing Western style desserts with Asian flavours and here I found a recipe from Just One Cookbook that combines that creamy and light French Crème Brûlée with Japanese Green Tea flavour for that slightly bitter tea note. Perfect!
Green Tea Crème Brûlée (adapted from Just One Cookbook)
360ml Thickened Cream
360ml Full Cream Milk
1 tbsp Green Tea Powder
5 Large Egg Yolks
100g Caster Sugar, plus 1 tsp for each serving
1. Preheat oven to 150°C.
2. In a medium saucepan, add the thickened cream, full cream milk, and sifted green tea powder and heat over medium heat. Stir the mixture often, until it’s very hot to touch but not boiling. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
3. Start to boil a kettle over the stove.
4. In a medium sized bowl, whisk the caster sugar and egg yolks until the mixture becomes pale in colour.
5. Add the milk mixture a bit at a time to the egg mixture, whisking vigorously so that you avoid cooking the eggs.
6. Once it has all been mixed together, place a sieve or a cheesecloth over a large bowl and strain the mixture.
7. Pour the strained mixture into 6 medium sized ramekins, then place the ramekins into a deep baking tray or pan.
8. Pour the boiling water into the baking tray or pan until the water comes up to halfway on the sides of the ramekins. Place the tray in the oven. Bake the crème brûlée for around 30 to 40 minute or until the crème brûlée is set when shaken but the middle still wobbles. Remove the ramekins from the oven and then allow to cool to room temperature before cling wrapping the ramekins and refrigerating for at least 2 hours (up to 3 days).
9. Take out the ramekins at least 30 minutes before caramelising the sugar on top. Then add one teaspoon of the caster sugar on top and move the ramekin around so that the sugar coats the entire top of the crème brûlée and discard any excess sugar. Using a kitchen blowtorch, melt the sugar until the sugar caramelises and browns. Leave the crème brûlée ramekins for at least 5 minutes before serving.
Taiyaki is one of my favourite Japanese snacks. I remember trying it for the first time in a Japanese mall in the USA and absolutely wowed over the crispy exterior and fluffy dough with custard oozing out. So when I came back to Melbourne, I tried to find a good one here but to no avail as yet. I was so tempted to buy a Taiyaki pan on eBay but the cost of shipping would have set me back quite a bit, however, I was fortunate enough to come across a really light one on this street that sells all these commercial kitchenware in Asakusa, Tokyo. I found this recipe from Just One Cookbook that has a nice Taiyaki recipe which is easy enough to follow, and tastes great too.
Taiyaki (By Namiko Chen from Just One Cookbook)
Makes: 5 Pieces
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Passive Time: 1 hour
150g Cake Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 Egg, Beaten
3 tbsp Caster Sugar
100g Red Bean Paste
1 tbsp Vegetable Oil
1. In a large bowl, sift the cake flour, baking powder and baking soda.
2. Add the caster sugar to the flour mix whisk to combine.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg. Add the milk and whisk until well combined.
4. Add the egg and milk mixture to the dry mixture and whisk well. Place the batter in the refrigerator for at least an hour to rest.
5. Take the mixture out of the fridge and pour the batter into a measuring jug. The batter should be around 1 1/4 cups.
6. Place the Taiyaki pan over the stove, and heat the pan on low medium heat. Brush the pan with the vegetable oil.
7. Pour the batter into the mold to around 60% full. Make sure the batter covers all around the mold.
8. Roll the red bean paste into a cylindrical shape and place into the centre of the mold. Pour batter on top to cover it. Close the lid and immediately flip.
9. Cook the Taiyaki for around 2 to 2.5 minutes each side. Then flip and cook for another 2 to 2.5 minutes. Open the pan to check if the Taiyaki is golden in colour. Remove the Taiyaki from the mold and allow to cool on a wire rack.
Since holidaying in Japan, I had this urge to consume anything green tea or think about what foods I can add green tea to. I found this amazingly looking recipe by Namiko Chen from Just One Cookbook that I just had to try. I made a few tweaks and it came out quite nicely if I do say so myself. Not too buttery, and a lovely green tea aroma to it.
Makes: 36 cookies (60 small cookies)
Preparation Time: 20 mins
Cooking Time: 20 mins
240g plain flour
20g green tea powder
150g unsalted butter, softened
120g icing sugar
1/8 tsp salt
2 large egg yolks
60g chopped macadamias (or 60g white chocolate chips if prefer something sweeter)
1. Sift the plain flour and green tea powder in a medium sized bowl.
2. Beat the butter, icing sugar and salt until light and fluffy.
3. Add the two egg yolks and beat until combined.
4. In small batches, add the flour and green tea powder into the wet mixture until combined.
5. Evenly fold in the chopped macadamia nuts (or white chocolate chips).
6. Split the dough into two even sized portions and shape into cylinders.
7. Lay out cling wrap, about the size of chopping board, and place the dough on top.
8. Wrap the dough tightly, and if need be, wrap it in more cling wrap to give it a firm shape.
9. Place in the refrigerator for a two to three hours (or overnight). However, if pressed for time, you can pop it in the freezer for around 30 minutes until it has hardened but still able to cut.
10. Preheat oven to 150°C (300°F). Take out the dough from the fridge (or freezer) and remove the cling wrap. Slice the cookies to around 7mm thick or as preferred and place onto a baking tray, 3-4 cm apart.
11. Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until the bottom of the cookie is slightly browned.