Dolling up, the simplest sweet for Hina doll festival

Hinamatsuri is arriving soon. Japan is full of cute girly treats and retro dolls.
Maybe my little stars belong to another festival, and I have not the best colors of cups, but that doesn’t matter. I’m giving you an easy recipe, then you decorate as you like.

You need boiled azuki beans (or other beans if you want), sugar/honey, powdered agar agar, a little brandy.
For boiling the beans, click here.

Take a cup of beans, put them in a bowl with their broth, add sugar to taste, a tbs of brandy. Heat 30 seconds in micro-wave. Let one hour.
Reheat 1 minute in micro-wave. When it’s very hot, stir in 1 tbs of agar. Reheat 30 seconds. Pour in little cups. Decorate.
Let cool.

Other wagashi tea sweet recipes (click here).

Not your average rice salad, super cooling with neba-neba power

A green rice salad particularly refreshing. It’s loaded with gumbo (okra).

Neba neba, that’s the effect of the cut okra. A sort of strong jelly gets out of it and makes threads… It’s very hydrating. This food is recommended for hot weather.

I’ve mixed grains. 2/3 of genmai brown rice, a little mochi awa foxtail millet (small balls) and hato mugi Job’s Tears(big balls). They all cooked together in the rice cooker, but with 10% more water than usual. Of course no salt.

Okra, the rice mix. Tomato paste, negi leeks. Indian spice mix powder plus fennel seeds.

Some day try to jellifyyour salad sauce. It’s very surprising.
酢醤油寒天 sushoyu kanten : Agar jellified dressing. It’s a mix of soy sauce, cane sugar and rice vinegar, into agar agar.

Fork crumbled. Serve it very cold.

The jelly dressing on top is really pleasant.

It’s very easy to eat. No filling of heavy stomach like after a big dish of starch. The sourness of the jelly and the fennel seeds combine in an original flavor.

Too hot to cook ? Too hot to eat ? Cooling full course

We’re in the heat of the hot days. I don’t even feel like eating, but that wouldn’t be a good idea. Let’s make something to enjoy till the last bit !
So here is the menu :

3 brown antipasti
tofu Caprese
kurozato kanten with grapes

Lots of hot weather recommended ingredients :
Kanten (agar) and konnyaku are jellies that help digestion.
Everything plant based, lots of raw.
Different colors and vitamins.
Sour vinegar, strong wasabi.

I know that looks… special. You have raw shiitake mushrooms, sliced, marinated in a little lemon juice.

Konnyaku sticks, with negi leeks. That has no calories or nearly. That’s for the fresh texture of the konnyaku and the pungency of the leek.

Today’s natto with black sesame and wasabi.

Now about the main dish…

Too lazy to prepare a sauce, I bring the olive oil, balsamico, salt and pepper on the table.

This time, it’s made with silky tofu and negi as the herb. Silkilicious…

The hardest ! The agar agar has to be cooked 2 minutes ! What a hell. But that’s all.

Just add the flavoring : kurozato, Okinawan black cane sugar. It has a taste of ginger bread, so just that is enough.
The hardened block cut in cubes, served chilled with grapes and toothpicks :

Filipina salada (buko pandan)

Buko pandan, coconut and pandan. It’s a sweet, not a real salad.
This is my “agar du jour”, and that’s a luxury one.

It’s as simple as turning pandan leaves into jelly.


I’ve taken 3 leaves for 1/2 liter of water. Made a knot to leaves, brought to a boil, take away from fire. Cut the leaves roughly, still in the water (with scissor). Let 15 minutes.
Sieve 1/2 cup of liquid. Transfer the rest in mixer. Juice.
Add one dose of agar (they use a ressembling seaweed in the Philippines, it’s totally equivalent) to the clear liquid, bring to boil. Pour in it the juice (through a mesh filter), add a little sugar, sweetener. Stir well. Transfer in jelly case. It hardened in 15 minutes.

Cubes of green sweetness. The flavor of pandan is encantly sweet and tropical. Not an hint of bitterness. Like a dream of sticky rice and vanilla.
Then add 1 tablespoon of coconut cream (that you dind floating on top of coconut milk).

Some would add condensed milk or even whipped cream. No thanks, I prefer my (3 (back to back simpler… I confess) serving of the simpler version to one of theirs.
The coconut cream is naturally sweet, if you’re an extremely sweet tooth you can add a little syrup. I promise you, it’s rich enough, and flavor is plentyful. I enjoy it this way. Mmmmmm !

Corn egg for dinner

This egg is not boiled. It’s raw.

If you have corn milk, you can have corn eggs. Just add agar agar.

I poured the mix in 2 egg holders. Then joined the 2 halves in one.

The second is a tomato egg, of course.

Shape is not so perfect because I f+@#@ed* one half.

So inside it’s cheese.

Great, that went well with the tomato. That’s a funny first dish or mini-meal.

*that meant “failed”. What did you imagine ?