It’s pear season, and also almost time for Halloween. I’ve been thinking of poaching pears in agua de jamaica for a while, and I based my poaching liquid off my favorite recipe for the drink in Adrianna’s The Year of Cozy. Sadly, my local market was out of oranges (which Adrianna uses in her recipe), so I used grapefruit. Grapefruit turned out to be a fantastic choice for the poaching liquid, as its acidity compliments that of the hibiscus. I actually ended up drinking the leftover straining liquid with water and it was great… Anyways, here’s the recipe.
Serves two + 1 drink
- 1/2 C Dried Hibiscus Flowers
- 1 T Vanilla Extract
- 2 T + 2 t Sugar
- 1 1/2 C Water
- 1/2 C Ruby Grapefruit Juice
- 2 Peeled Pears
- Ice Cream to Serve
- Mix together all the ingredients except the pears and ice cream. Bring them to a boil and then simmer for 10 minutes.
- Put the peeled pears in and simmer for 25 minutes, flipping every 5 minutes.
- Let the pears cool in the liquid (at this point I ran to 7-Eleven for ice cream).
- You can drink the liquid after straining (I did this after adding water) or boil it down into a syrup for serving.
- Serve the poached pears with ice cream and enjoy!
Some of my friends from my new hall in college are vegan so I decided to make a cool baked good for them. Before moving into my dorm I also purchased a bunch of cool extracts like mango, lychee, and ube to experiment with. Using the mini donut pan I got for my birthday last year, I made these fun treats.
Makes 12 Normal Baked Donuts or 12 Mini Donuts + 5 ½” (14 cm) Cake
- 1¾ C Flour
- 1 C Sugar
- 1 ½ t Baking Powder
- ¾ t Salt
- ¼ C Bland Apple Sauce
- ½ C Coconut Milk
- 1 ½ t White Vinegar
- ¼ C Vegetable oil
- 1 t Mango Extract
- ¼ C Water
- 3 C Powdered Sugar
- 2 T Agave Syrup
- 4-5 T Coconut Milk
- Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
- Mix together the coconut milk and white vinegar together in a large bowl.
- Mix together all the dry ingredients for the donuts in one bowl.
- Mix the apple sauce, oil, extract and water with the coconut milk-vinegar mixture.
- Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix until smooth.
- Spoon the batter into your greased pans of choice.
- If making the normal donut pan cook for 15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. If using the mini donut pan bake for 10 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. If making it in a 5 ½” (14 cm) cook for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- After you remove the donuts/cake from the pan, let them cool and start to prepare the glaze.
- Whisk all the ingredients together for the glaze.
- Dip the cooled donuts in the glaze to coat them and pour the rest over the mini cake if you decided to make it.
- Decorate if you see fit and enjoy!
I am a HUUUGE fan of Bee and Puppycat! So much so that I themed the birthday where I became an adult after it.
Instead of a cake, I made Puppycat Sufganiyot based off of the donut from the cover art of the first episode. I made the actual sufganiyot by taking My Name is Yeh’s dough and filling it with A Brown Table’s blueberry chocolate jam to achieve that midnight sky look. I decorated it with strawberries, chocolate, a leaf and sour cream frosting.
For my main dish I served the “perfect sandwich” from the comic books using this bread, herby goat cheese, lox, spinach, hardboiled eggs (I didn’t fry them because I wanted to serve finger sandwiches), and avocado.
The teas shown in the right picture came from Emma Mctea’s Bee and Puppycat blends, all of which are excellent.
Unrelated to my birthday party, I also decided to use the lamb curry from Japanese Soul Cooking to recreate the above screen capture.
I have made a series of tea blends with Adagio. I was making a cake roll and I thought the Spilled Milk Tea I had made would go well with what I was doing, so I went along with that feeling and made this cake roll. Its based off this recipe.
- 4 Eggs, separated
- ¾ C Sugar
- 1 T My Spilled Milk Tea (finely ground)
- 2 t Vanilla
- 1 t Almond Extract
- ¾ C Cake Flour
- ¾ t Baking Powder
- ¼ t Salt
- ½ C Almond Butter
- ¼ C Cream Cheese
- ½ C Powdered Sugar
- 1 ½ C Heavy Cream
- 2 T Chocolate Syrup
- ⅓ C of Chopped Chocolate Caramels
- Heat the oven to 375°F/190°C.
- Mix together the egg whites until fluffy.
- Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and tea in another bowl.
- In yet another separate bowl, mix together the egg yolks, sugar, almond extract, and vanilla.
- Combine the dry ingredients with egg-yolk mixture. After this has been combined mix in the egg whites.
- Pour the batter into a 15 in x 10 in/ 38 cm x 25 cm inch pan that has wax-paper lining.
- Cook this in the oven for ten minutes.
- While it is cooking mix together all the ingredients (except the chocolate caramels) for the filling with an electric mixture until it looks ugly and stays that way one the electric mixer is done.
- When the cake is done, drop it onto a tea towel smeared with powdered sugar, roll the cake using the towel and let set for ten minutes.
- Once the time is up, spread the filling on the cake and dapple it with the chopped chocolate caramels. Roll it back up and enjoy.
I made a chocolate babka Breaking Breads, and it was a hit. This time I wanted to make a halva babka, but with a challah dough, like Molly does in Molly on the Range. I used started with her dough (though I changed sizings, flours, sweetener, etc.), went crazy with the filling, and used Scheft’s babka method to shape and coat the bread. I’m giving half to my halva-loving Romanian fake aunt, who is studying to become a child advocate. All in all it was a fun and chewy project!
- 2 Heaping T of Yeast
- 3/4 C Warm Water
- 1/4 C of Date Molasses
- 2 C + 2 T Flour
- 1 C Semolina Flour
- 1 t Salt
- 2 Eggs
- 1/3 C Canola/Sunflower Oil
- Simple Syrup
- 25 C Tahini (a viscous one)
- 75 C Crumbled Vanilla Halva
- 2 T Date Molasses
- Mix together the water, date molasses, and yeast together and let sit for ten minutes.
- While the yeast is activating, mix together the flours and salt.
- Add the eggs and oil to the yeast mixture and whisk.
- Add the dry and wet mixtures together, knead until a smooth dough is formed (this can also be achieved by beating it up in a dough mixer for 8 minutes or so).
- Let the dough rest for two hours under a damp dishtowel.
- Mix together all of the filling ingredients.
- Using a rolling pin on a floured surface to make the dough a 9″ by 24″ rectangle.
- Dab and then spread the filling across the rectangle, leaving an inch perimeter of naked dough around the edges.
- Roll this up like a fruit roll up.
- Then cut it down the middle.
- Twist the two dough pieces into one. Than twist it a second time. It should look like this.
- Put it in an oiled loaf pan and let rise for an hour under a damp dishtowel.
- Heat the oven to 375°F/190°C.
- Put the dough in the oven for 35-40 minutes. At the 20 minute mark give it a tinfoil hat so prevent the top being burned.
- Let it cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove and brush the entire thing with simple syrup and let dry on a rack.
I wanted to make something fun for Father’s Day, but it’s so so so hot here I didn’t want to break out the oven. I did want a little heat though, for funsies, so I added cayenne to the crust. I was inspired by the crust on Molly’s Malabi from Molly on the Range and Tokyo Cult Recipes Gyunyu Purin (the blueberry version of which I enjoyed a few days ago).
Makes 5 Small Glasses
- 5 C Shelled Hazelnuts
- 5 t Cayenne
- 2 T Sugar
- 5 T Softened Butter
- Pinch of Salt
- 4 T Sugar
- 25 C Ovomaltine Powder
- 5 C Whole Milk (I mixed some leftover cream into mine)
- 1 T Jello Powder
- 2 T Water
- In a food processor combine all ingredients for the crust. Push into the bottom of your serving glasses and stick in the fridge to firm up.
- On the stove mix the Ovomaltine, sugar and milk. Heat and mix until sugar is dissolves. Move the pot off the heat after.
- Bloom the jello in the water.
- Mix the bloomed jello into the Ovomaltine mixture and pour this mixture into the glasses atop the crust.
- Place the glasses in the freezer to firm up and enjoy in a couple of hours.
We love bread pudding. When I found giant croissants in a bakery I decided I needed to eat them in a bread pudding!
- 1 C Whole Milk
- 1/2 C Chocolate Chips
- 1 Pear
- 1 Large Croissant (or 2 regular sized ones)
- 2 Eggs
- 2 T Bourbon
- Heat the oven to 350°F/175°C.
- Mix the milk and chips in a saucepan and melt until combined. Add the Bourbon and let cool.
- Chop up the pear and croissant and throw in the cooking pan. Mix together the eggs and pour them in.
- Pour the chocolate mixture into the cooking pan. Mix it all together.
- Bake the pudding in the oven until the liquid is jiggly (20 minutes for me).
My attempts to find green gooseberries became legendary/a long-running joke among my senior-year English class. Sadly, I ultimately failed, but I did find some jarred ones, which I used to make this crumble.
- 1 1/2 C Jarred Gooseberries
- 3 T Flour
- 2 T Elderflower Syrup
- 1 1/2 C Frozen Raspberries
- 1 T Fresh Chopped Mint (loosely packed)
- 6 T Honey
- 1/2 C Brown Sugar
- 1/4 C Almond Meal
- 2 T Flour
- 1/2 C Rolled Oats
- 1 Pinch Salt
- 4 T Butter
- Preheat the oven to 375 °F/190 °C.
- Mix together all the crust’s ingredients except the butter. Cut the butter into small pieces and rub it into the try mix.
- Heat the honey and mint in a saucepan, turn off the heat when the honey becomes a lighter consistency.
- Mix the other filling ingredients together and then add the mint honey.
- Put the wet mixture in a baking dish (I used a 22 cm x 12 cm/9 in x 5 in metal one) and top with the crust mixture.
- Bake for 30 minutes or so until the topping is crisped and the juices are bubbling.
I’m participating in Fandom Foodie’s Nyanuary this month (more info here). The theme is cats and so I decided to make a treat for my favorite fictional cat of all, Nyanko Sensei, from Natsume Yuujinchou. Natsume Yuujinchou is one of my top anime/manga because of its calm atmosphere, stellar music, and excellent art.
Nyanko Sensei is always eating and he’s always begging Natsume to take him to the dango shop on the way home, so in honor of him, I made dango. The colors are meant to represent his white fur, orange fur, and red markings + collar (if you want grey you could experiment with black sesame). I used some rather untraditional flavors but I was overall happy with the result. I paired it with a tea syrup as Nyanko Sensei might drink tea, though he would most likely much prefer alcohol.
Makes 3 Skewers
- 1/4 C + 2 T (Non-Glutinous) White Rice Flour
- 1/4 C + 2 T Mochiko
- 2 T Sugar
- 1/3 C of Hot Water
- 5 t Almond Extract
- 1 t Elderflower Syrup
- 5 t Orange Extract
- Orange Food Coloring
- Red Food Coloring
Black Tea Syrup (Adapted from Thirsty for Tea)
- 5 t of Tangerine Black Tea Leaves (I used this)
- 1/6 C Hot Water
- 1 t of Almond Extract
- 1/4 C Brown Sugar
- 1/4 C White Sugar
- First make the tea syrup. Steep the tea leaves in the water until suitably dark and then strain them out.
- Mix the strained tea and sugars in a sauce pan and heat until the sugars are dissolved. Let the mixture cool
- Add the almond extract to the cooled mixture and then set it to the side until later.
- To begin making the dango, first whisk together all the dry ingredients. Bit by bit mix into the hot water to make the mixture cohesive.
- Break the dough into three parts. To the first part add the almond extract and red dye. To the second part add the orange extract and orange food coloring. To the third portion add the elderflower syrup. If one gets too wet, add more mochiko.
- Form each portion into three equally sized balls.
- Now it’s time to boil them. Fill a saucepan with water and bring to a boil. I did them separately out of fear the colors would mix. Drop a batch in the water, when a ball floats (about 10 minutes) remove it.
- Place the balls on the skewers like shown in the picture and then serve with the syrup
I’ve looked on from afar for too long. This month I am participating in Foodnflix’s Pan’s Labyrinth roundup hosted by Katharina at Pretty Cake Machine.
Pan’s Labyrinth has tons of food, but that was not what inspired me. I was instead inspired by the guts of the frog that Ofelia has to get the key from. I decided to make a steamed pudding to capture the wetness of the guts, cover it in caramel for the salvia and top it with dried blueberries for the bugs.
- 1 Heaping C of Cake Crumbs (I used pound cake)
- 1 C Milk
- 5 T Sugar
- 5 C Butterscotch Chips
- 1 Egg
- 1 t Rum flavoring or Just Rum
- 1/4 C Orange-Juice Soaked Dried Blueberries
- Dried Blueberries to sprinkle
Sauce (Adapted from Just One Cookbook)
- 3/4 C + 2 T Sugar
- 1/2 C Warm Heavy Cream
- 1/4 C Salted Butter
For the Pudding
- Preheat the oven to 350 °F/175 °C.
- Heat the milk and when it starts to simmer add in the sugar. Cook until dissolved.
- Turn off the heat and mix in the butterscotch chips until combined into a smooth mixture. Add in the cake crumbs and let sit for 10 minutes.
- After this, mix in the egg and flavoring until smooth. Then add in the dried blueberries.
- Take out a greased popover pan and fill the spots with the mixture.
- Place the popover pan in a pan filled with an inch of water and put in the oven for an hour. Make the Carmel sauce while they cook
For the Sauce
- Heat the sugar in a saucepan until it becomes a brown liquid.
- Add the cream and combine. Then add in the butter and take the mixture off the heat when it is combined. Let cool a bit.
Carefully take out a pudding and put it on a plate, pour some caramel syrup over it. Sprinkle some dry dried blueberries over the top. Repeat with the rest. If you want, hide a key in one of them for someone to find.
Enjoy your guts!