Having made the traditional hot cross buns many times before, I wanted to experiment and try something different this year. Of course, I thought of green tea, one of my favourite flavours. I came across quite a few recipes that paired these green tea hot cross buns with red bean paste or sweetened red beans, but I love the pairing of green tea and white chocolate. The bitterness of the tea flavour works well with the sweetness of the white chocolate and it’s not so far off from making chocolate hot cross buns. I bought some hot cross buns from my local bakery to compare with and these hot cross buns are just as or even more so, fluffy inside. Perfect warm, with a thin smothering of butter or even red bean or black sesame paste if you’re feeling a bit adventurous.
600g Plain Flour, Extra for Dusting
14g Dried Instant Yeast
100g Caster Sugar
25g Matcha Green Tea Powder
1 1/2 tbsp Mixed Spice
1/8 tsp Salt
250g White Chocolate Chips
50g Unsalted Butter
300ml Full Cream Milk, Room Temperature
2 Eggs, Lightly Beaten
Flour Paste for the Crosses
90g Plain Flour
4-7 tbsp Water
30g Caster Sugar
1. In a large bowl, sift the flour, caster sugar, matcha green tea powder, mixed spice and salt. Then add in the yeast and stir until mixed well.
2. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over low-medium heat. Then add in the milk and heat until the mixture is lukewarm.
3. Pour the lukewarm milk and butter mixture into the dry ingredients, along with the beaten eggs and mix slowly until the dough starts to combine then add in the white chocolate chips and mix until the dough forms into a ball.
4. Take the dough out of the bowl and onto a floured surface, and knead the dough for around 10 minutes or until the dough is nice and smooth. Place the dough into a large lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside in a warm place for around 1 to 1.5 hours or until the dough doubles in size.
5. Once the dough has doubled in size, take it out of the bowl and knead the dough back to its original size. Split the dough into 12 equal parts (roughly 100g in weight) and roll into a ball. Then place onto a lined baking tray roughly 1 cm apart and allow the dough to rest for another 30 minutes. Once the dough has doubled in size again or near doubled in size, preheat the oven to 170?C.
6. To make the crosses, combine the plain flour and water in a small bowl. Add a tablespoon of water at a time until it’s just runny enough to pipe. Place the paste into a piping bag and pipe onto the buns.
7. Once the dough has doubled in size, place in the oven to bake for around 20 to 25 minutes or until they have browned on the top. Remove from the oven and place the buns onto a cooling rack.
8. To glaze the buns, combine the water and caster sugar into a small saucepan and heat over low heat. Bring to the boil, stirring if necessary so that the sugar dissolves and boil for around 3 to 4 minutes. Brush the glaze onto the warm hot cross buns then serve the buns warm or at room temperature.
I saw this recipe posted by Adam Liaw (of Masterchef Australia fame) on Twitter and it looked stunning. Making a cake that separates when cooked into two layers, one with a delicious soft custard layer and another light and fluffy sponge layer is one that I had to try making. Though, I made a mistake of taking it out too early so that’s why there’s a few cracks but apart from that, it looked great and where dusting some icing sugar over it helps cover some of that up.
Orange Marmalade Custard Cake (adapted from Adam Liaw’s recipe on GoodFood.com.au)
Makes: One 20cm cake
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour
Passive Time: 2 hours
180g Orange Marmalade (1/2 cup)
125g Unsalted Butter, plus extra for greasing
4 Egg Yolks
4 Egg Whites
120g Caster Sugar
1 tbsp Cold Water
160g Plain Flour
500ml Full Cream Milk
1 tsp White Vinegar
50g Icing Sugar
1. Preheat oven to 160ºC and line a 20cm square cake tin.
2. In a small saucepan, combine the orange marmalade and unsalted butter and heat until the butter has just melted. Then set aside to cool slightly.
3. In a stand mixer, whisk the egg yolks and caster sugar until light and fluffy.
4. Add the tablespoon of cold water and melted butter mixture to the eggs and whisk until combined.
5. Add the plain flour to the mixture and mix on a slow speed until just incorporated.
6. Then add in the milk a bit at a time until the mixture is smooth.
7. Separately, whisk the egg whites to firm peaks and then add the vinegar to the egg whites, whisking until combined.
8. Fold half the egg whites into the marmalade mixture until just combined. Then fold in the remaining egg whites until just combined.
9. Transfer the mixture to the cake tin and then bake for 45 minutes or until the top is brown and the edges are well set. The cake should be very wobbly in the centre still. Cool to room temperature in the tin, then chill in the fridge for an additional 2 hours.
I had leftover lychees from making Lychee macarons so I decided to try making a lychee chiffon cake substituting the typically used Pandan juice with lychee puree. The Lychee Chiffon cake here has this subtle lychee flavour, almost like a little tang to it. Could be too subtle for some, but it’s definitely a wonderful, light chiffon cake.
Lychee Chiffon Cake (adapted from Pick Yin’s blog)
Makes: One 25cm Cake
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour
Passive Time: 2 hours
160g Lychees, Canned and Strained (Makes 1/2 cup Lychee Puree)
180g Self Raising Flour
50g Caster Sugar
8 Egg Yolks
6 tbsp Corn Oil
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
8 Egg Whites
100g Caster Sugar
1/2 tsp Cream of Tartar
1. Preheat oven to 170°C.
2. Place the lychees in a blender and blend, then strain until you have 1/2 cup of lychee puree. Set aside.
3. Sift the self raising flour and baking soda in a small bowl.
4. In a separate large mixing bowl, whisk the egg yorks and corn oil together until combined.
5. Add the lychee puree to the egg mixture and mix until combined.
6. Add in the caster sugar to the egg and lychee mixture and whisk until the sugar has completely melted.
7. Pour the mixture into the dry ingredients and whisk well until it forms a smooth batter. Set aside.
8. In a stand mixer, whisk the egg whites and cream of tartar together. Once the egg white mixture starts to foam, slowly add in the caster sugar until the meringue is smooth and glossy and forms stiff peaks.
9. Add 1/3 of the meringue mixture to the lychee mixture and fold gently until it has all combined. Then add in the rest of the meringue and gently fold until all combined. Be careful not to over beat the batter.
10. Pour the mixture into the chiffon cake tin. Place a cloth on the table and tap the cake tin on top of the cloth to remove any air bubbles in the mixture. Place the tin in the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Lower the temperature to 160°C and bake for another 45 to 50 minutes or until cake is done and the cake tester comes out clean. Once done, remove from the oven and flip it upside down to cool for up to 2 hours.
11. Once the cake has cooled down, run a thin knife around the edges of the tin and remove the bottom of the chiffon cake tin to remove the cake. The chiffon cake should be served upside down with the flat surface on top.
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.
I love the taste of peppermint. There’s something just so refreshing about it and it goes perfectly with rich and creamy chocolate. I found this lovely recipe from The Food Charlatan and the cookies looked spectacular so I had to give it a try.
Mint Chocolate Cookies (adapted from The Food Charlatan)
Makes: 40 cookies
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Passive Time: 1 hour (optional)
225g Unsalted Butter, Softened
160g Caster Sugar
2 Large Eggs
1 Egg Yolk
1 tsp Peppermint Extract
10 drops Green Food Colouring
585g Plain Flour
2 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Cream of Tartar
1/2 tsp Salt
170g Dark Chocolate Chips
170g Milk Chocolate Chips
1. Preheat oven to 175°C and line baking sheets with baking paper.
2. In a stand mixer, beat the unsalted butter and caster sugar together until light and fluffy.
3. Add the eggs and yolk, peppermint extract and food colouring and mix until well combined.
4. In a separate bowl, sift the plain flour, baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt.
5. Add the dry flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix until mixture is not fully combined.
6. Set aside around 1/3 cup a mixture of dark and milk chocolate chips. Then take half of the dark and milk chocolate chips and chop coarsely with a knife.
7. Add the rest of the chocolate chips and coarsely chopped chocolate chips to the cookie dough mixture and mix until just combined.
8. Take a tablespoon of the dough and shape it to form a ball. Place these on the baking sheets and then gently flatten them. Then press the leftover chocolate chips on the top of the cookies.
9. Place the cookies into the oven and bake for around 8 to 10 minutes or until the cookies are just starting to brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for around 5 minutes then remove the cookies from the baking sheets and place onto cooling racks to cool completely.
- Matcha White Chocolate Hot Cross Buns
- Marmalade Custard Cake
- Lychee Chiffon Cake
- Green Tea Crème Brûlée
- Mint Choc Chip Cookies
- Almond Butter Cupcakes with Almond Buttercream
- Lychee & White Chocolate Macarons
- Ginger & Orange Melting Moments
- Black Tea Cupcakes with Honey Buttercream Frosting
- Caramel Apple Beer Bread