Tarte aux Pommes


Tarte aux Pommes is this Francophile’s version of the all-American apple pie to celebrate the nation’s birthday. biggrin


I got the recipe from a blog, Mission: Food, who got the original recipe from Michael Paul’s Sweet Paris – a book I immediately ordered after tasting the wonderful dessert. This French apple tart is out of this world. It rivals any tart you get at pastry shops.


I followed the recipe to a T – from making the Pâte Sucrée (sweet dough) to Frangipane (almond filling) — and although it took me half a day to bake this pie from conception to completion (in a 100 degree kitchen), the result is worth all the hard work.  This might be the most professional-looking dessert I’ve made in a long, long time.


I hope everyone had a wonderful Fourth of July celebration with good food and company!

Mexican Chocolate Ice Cream


Are you looking for an ice cream with a little twist for summer? Try this grown-up version of the traditional chocolate ice cream, with a fire-ry heat from Cayenne pepper! It uses 2% fat milk and no cream, so it’s a slight healthier version of the popular treat. And you don’t need an ice cream maker to make it.

Mexican Chocolate Ice Cream
(Makes 1 quart)

3 cups milk (I used 2% and it still came out creamy)
3 egg yolks
140 g (5 oz) dark chocolate (I used 70% cacao)
½ cup granulated sugar
4 tablespoons Dutch-process cocoa powder (unsweetened)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
Pinch of salt

① Heat milk in a saucepan, over low heat. Mix in cocoa powder, chocolate and sugar and stir with a whisk until they dissolve completely. Be careful not to boil the milk.

② In a small bowl (I used a measuring cup), separate the eggs. You’ll only use yolks here. Mix the yolks. Temper by pouring a ladle-full of hot milk into the egg yolks. Once mixed, pour the eggs and milk mixture slowly back into the saucepan and stir. Add vanilla extract and salt. Stir until the mixture thickens (you know you have the right consistency when the mixture thinly coats the spatula).

➂ Remove the saucepan from the heat and transfer the mixture into a separate bowl. Set aside for about an hour, covered with plastic wrap, until the mixture cools to room temperature.

④ Once the mixture has cooled, pour it into a one-quart container and put it in a freezer. Take the container out of the freezer every hour, three times, and stir the ice cream. Enjoy!


I think the bitter chocolates work best for this ice cream. The not-so-sweet lusciousness can stand up to the powerful heat of cayenne pepper. I used the Trader Joe’s chocolates bars that I received as a gift from my friend Mary Lee.

Just to note — because no heavy cream was used, this version doesn’t have the creaminess that you might be accustomed too in ice cream. But it has a really refreshing icy texture that’s simply wonderful. I love cayenne pepper but definitely reduce the amount if you’re not a huge fan of the tingling heat.

Happy June, everyone!

Strawberry Frozen Yogurt


Early summer is upon us, which means fresh, succulent strawberries will begin to make appearances at local farmers markets and roadside vendors soon … and that’s a wonderful thing!

I still haven’t decided if I’ll drive down to Oxnard for the annual Strawberry Festival in May, but I’ll definitely be indulging in fraise as much as I can in the coming months. And I’ll also be making lots of desserts with the juicy berries, including this refreshing frozen yogurt.


Strawberry Frozen Yogurt
Recipe inspired by David Levovitz’s recipe but modified slightly
(Makes about 2 quarts)

2 lbs fresh or frozen strawberries
32 oz plain yogurt
1 cup maple syrup
Juice of ½ lemon
1 tablespoon vodka (optional)

① Cut strawberries into small pieces, removing the stems.  Mix in the maple syrup, vodka, and lemon juice, and let it sit for about 2 hours to let the flavors soak in.

② Puree the mixture in a blender. Don’t liquidity completely, if you like some strawberry bits.


③ Combine the strawberry puree with yogurt and mix well with a spatula.  You can put the mixture in an ice cream maker at this point, but you can skip this if you don’t own it, or don’t want to bother (like me this time).

④ If you’re not using the ice cream maker, pour the mixture into a plastic container and freeze for about 6 hours. Take the container out of the freezer several times to mix occasionally.


You might want to take out the container from the freezer and leave it out for about 10-15 minutes before serving, to soften the frozen yogurt a little so it’ll scoop better.

I love this dessert. It’s tastes like a mixture of frozen yogurt and fruit sorbet, and a great alternative to a high-calorie ice cream.

Empowering, One Dorayaki At a Time


I remember when my family and I first came to the states back in the 80s, it was virtually impossible to find delicate, French-inspired confections what rivaled those available in Japan. Dense sugary cakes topped with thick buttercream (with artificial colorings) and overly sweet and brick-like brownies filled the supermarket bakery counters, and those airy sponge cakes that we were so accustomed to were nowhere to be found.

That’s when my mother learned to bake at home. I think she baked almost every day one year. I looked forward to coming home from school every day, knowing that lemon-infused madeleines (she baked them in cupcake tins because she didn’t own a shell-shaped pan) and heavenly chocolate vodka cakes (yes, vodka!) would be waiting for me upon my return.

The dessert landscape has certainly changed in recent years. It’s now possible to bring home wonderful, high-quality cakes, cookies, macarons and any other confections imaginable, from even as close as your local neighborhood grocer. But there’s something still very empowering about baking things you crave at home, in your own kitchen, whenever you want, however much you want.

My recent empowering moment – making dorayaki, one of my favorite Japanese confections, at home! When the craving strikes, but a trip to a nearest Asian supermarket is out of reach (with a little bebe sleeping in the crib), we’ve gotta do what we’ve gotta do to satisfy the urges!

(Makes 12 pancakes; 6 dorayaki)
Recipe taken from Cooking With Dog; I doubled the recipe to make more


4 eggs
160 g granulated sugar
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon baking soda
100 ml water
260 g cake flour
5 tablespoons water (to adjust the thickness of the batter at the end)
18 oz (1 large can) Azuki (sweet red bean paste)



① Beat eggs, sugar and honey with a whisk. Beat the mixture for about 15 minutes. I used a stand mixture with a whisk attachment.

② In a separate bowl or a cup, dissolve the baking soda with water. Add it to the egg mixture, and mix.


③ Sift cake flour and add it to the egg mixture; mix but be careful not to over mix.


This is the consistency of the batter.


④ Cover the bowl with a plastic wrap and set aside for about 30 minutes.


⑤ Adjust the thickness of the batter by adding water, one teaspoon at a time, to achieve the perfect consistency.  This is the consistency that you’re looking for.  You want the batter to flow down the whisk effortlessly without being too runny.


⑥ Heat a griddle or a non-stick pan.  Drop the batter onto the griddle or pan; it should naturally form a circle when you drop the batter gently.

I noticed that the surface will come out perfectly brown (without any inconsistent spots) if you don’t oil the pan.  Make sure to use the non-stick kind so the pancake slides right off the surface.


⑦ Flip the pancake when the bubbles form on top.  Cook the other side for about 20 seconds.


⑧ Get the pre-made anko (sweetened azuki beans) ready.  You can get this at most supermarkets (in Asian grocery aisle) or at Asian stores.  You can always make your own but I found the canned version to be too delicious to pass up.  I can eat the entire can by myself in one sitting!


⑨ Scoop about 2 tablespoons of anko and layer it onto one side (the “wrong” side) of the pancake.


⑩ Take the second pancake to sandwich the anko.  You’re all done!


These dorayakis are amazing. The cakes (called “castella” in Japan) are perfectly bouncy (different from a regular breakfast pancake) and the combination between the sweet cake and azuki is simply divine. I might like the homemade version better than the store-bought ones!  If you store them in the refrigerator, it’s best to bring them to room temperature before you eat them by leaving them out for about 15-30 minutes (they are much softer at room temperature).

I’m glad I found a YouTube cooking show called, “Cooking with Dog,” that shows viewers how to make Japanese food and desserts.  Each show is narrated by an English speaking dog, Francis, with thick Japanese accent. It’s hilarious and informative – do check it out!

Itty Bitty Apple Pies

pie 3

Ever since the arrival of Pon Pon three weeks ago, my life has turned into all things itty bitty – itty bitty onsies, itty bitty hats, itty bitty diapers, itty bitty burps, itty bitty (or not so itty bitty) poo, itty bitty time to sleep … you name it, everything has shrunk in size! And look, I’m even making apple pies in an itty bitty, individual size now!

I initially planned on making a regular-size apple pie, or even a French apple tart (Tarte de Pommes), but realized after I finished making the dough that I only had four, relatively small Fuji apples, which weren’t enough to fill the entire pie plate. So, instead of making a thin, sorry pie, I decided to make mini, individual size pies using ramekins as a baking dish.

Since the only thing that’s not itty bitty at the moment is my raging appetite (I hear that a body often mistakes sleep deprivation with hunger, which explains my recent urge to eat everything in sight), this is a great way for me to control each food portionl!  redface

pink lineMaking the Pie Doughpink line

I’ve tried several different recipes but I found this to be my favorite one for a pie dough.  The texture of the dough is not overly buttery but comes out nice and flaky!  I adapted this recipe / ingredient measurements from the William Sonoma’s website but modified the process significantly, and omitted using a food processor.

Itty Bitty Apple Pie
(Makes 4 servings)

Pie Dough Recipe


2-½ cups all-purpose flour
2 sticks unsalted butter, chilled and diced into small cubes
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
½ cup ice water

dough 1

① Sift together flour, sugar, and salt in a bowl.  Add butter cubes.

dough 2

② With a fork or a pastry cutter, mix the dry ingredients with butter.  Try to break the butter cubes with the fork by smashing them against the bowl.  A food processor is often used here but there’s no need to go out and get one if you don’t own the machine.  Congratulations, you just saved yourself about $100.

dough 3

③ Slowly add water, one tablespoon at a time, as you continue to mix.  This should add a little ease, as the dough gets more pliable.  The mixture should have butter chunks the size of a small marble.

dough 4

④ Knead the dough.  Although many recipes instruct you to do this on a lightly-floured surface, you can actually do it directly in the bowl.  (Less dishes to wash — yipee!) biggrin

dough 5

⑤ Split the dough into two balls.  Wrap each dough in a plastic bag and refrigerate for about 30 minutes. You will only use one for this recipe so you can freeze the other for future baking (It should last about two months in a freezer).

I suppose you can half the recipe and only make one ball but I think it’s always nice to have the extra dough handy, in case you get surprise visitors and want to impress them with a freshly-baked pie or something!

dough 6

⑥ Take the chilled dough out of a refrigerator and place it on a lightly-floured surface.

dough 8

⑦ Roll the dough with a rolling pin.  Don’t worry about rolling it thinly yet.

dough 9

⑧ Fold the dough into three pieces, like folding a letter.

dough 7

⑨ Roll the dough again with the rolling pin.  Repeat this several time, for about five minutes.

dough 11

⑩ Wrap the dough in a plastic wrap and refrigerate again, this time for about 20 minutes.

pink lineMaking the Pie Fillingpink line

I debated whether to cook the filling first or bake it raw.  I decided on the former since Fuji is very firm and I was afraid that apple slices would still be too crispy after the dough bakes if I didn’t cook them first.  I’m really happy with how it came out – a perfect filling with a gentle bite!

Pie Filling:

4 Fuji apples, peeled and sliced in small pieces
3 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon powder
1 teaspoon nutmeg
Juice of 1/2 lemon

filling 1

① Add the apples, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a saucepan over medium heat.  Add lemon juice.

filling 2

② Cook the filling for about 20 minutes, until the sugar dissolves and the apple slices are tender, but not mushy.  Remove the saucepan from the heat and let it cool for about one hour.  It’ll be quicker if you refrigerate, for about 15 minutes.

pink linePutting  Together the Pie
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dough 12

① Preheat the oven to 425 degree (F).  Take out the dough from the refrigerator and place it on a lightly-floured surface.  Divide the dough into four equal pieces.  Then, divide each piece in half.  You should now have eight, equal size dough. You will use two (top and bottom) for each pie.  Roll the dough into a thin layer with a rolling pin.  The flattened dough should be larger than the ramekin.

dough 13

② Drape the ramekin with the dough and press it firmly against the dish.  Be careful not to tear the dough, but if you do, simply press it together and seal.

dough 14

③ Spoon the chilled apple filling evenly into each ramekin.

dough 15

④ Trim the access dough from the side with a small knife.  I used a sharp paring knife.  Press the edge tightly around the ramekin with your fingers to seal the filling inside, to avoid spillage during baking.

dough 16

⑤ Press the rim around the ramekin with a fork for a pretty imprint.

dough 17

⑥ Score the center of the pie with a knife.  This allows the air to go inside the pie during baking and help avoid filling explosion.

pie 1

⑦ Brush the top of each pie with egg wash, using a pastry brush, for a golden finish.  Sprinkle a teaspoon of granulated sugar on top of each pie.  Place each pie on the baking pan and put it in the oven.  Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the dough is golden brown.

pie 2

⑧ Remove the pies from the oven and let them cool for a few minutes before serving.

pink lineServing the Pie
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pie 4

You can remove the pie from the ramekin (it should slide right out, even without buttering the dish beforehand, if it’s still warm), or serve it directly on the ceramic dish.  The pie will be amazing a la mode, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

pie 5

The filling is not too sweet and not too mushy – just perfect.  And the crust has an amazing crisp to it.  I know it’s not typical to use Fuji apples for a pie but I find this to be the best kind because of its texture (they’re nicely firm and crispy) and has the perfect combination of sweetness and tartness.

I know I’m two days late, but I hope everyone had a wonderful Pi Day on March 14, to celebrate the significant of the number π, by eating your favorite pie!  Who knew mathematics can be so delicious!

Going Bananas


It’s official – I’ve gone bananas.

With only three hours of sleep (in 15-minute increments) in the last few days, I’m now completely moody, incoherent, and utterly delirious. Ask my husband. He probably thinks my head will start spinning any day (if it hasn’t already), like a woman possessed. I actually don’t know how I’m still alive.

Thank goodness for my friend Y for recommending me a book called, “Bring Up Bebe,” about the wisdom of French parenting. I’m only halfway done with the book, but I’m already fascinated. In addition to plethora of common-sense-but-so-often-forgotten advice, there’s even a chapter on how to make babies sleep through the night!  Boy, do I need to implement this technique immediately!

When life turns you into a banana, there’s only one thing to do – bake a banana bread, of course!


Please excuse me that this is a repeat of a post from 2009 (except I added some chocolate chips on this one). I baked a banana bread this morning and wanted to share some photos of this delicious dessert!

Banana Bread with Agave Nectar

(makes 1 loaf)


1-3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/3 cup agave nectar
1 teaspoon baking power
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup corn oil
3 ripe bananas, mashed (I like to leave little chunks in for texture)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 to 3/4 cup chocolate chips (I used half semi-sweet and half milk chocolates).


① Preheat the oven to 350 degree (F).

② Grease the 9x5x3 loaf pan with corn oil and place parchment paper inside.

③ Sift flour, salt, baking soda and baking power in a bowl and put aside.

banana 1

④ In a separate bowl, mash bananas. Add vanilla, ground cinnamon, agave nectar, canola oil and eggs and mix them together.

banana 2

⑤ Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Add chocolate chips.  Fold the wet ingredients gently into dry just until they mix evenly.  The important thing to keep in mind here is not to over-mix as it will result in tough bread (so all you KitchenAid lovers, put those stand mixers away and grab a spatula).


⑥  Pour the mixture into the loaf pan. Bake in the oven for about 45 minutes (in the middle rack), or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.


⑦ Remove the loaf from the pan and let it rest on a wire rack or on a plate.


⑧ Slice the loaf and serve at room temperature or cooled. I personally LOVE it served slightly warm!


Enjoy! Bon appetite! Itadakimasu! Okay, good night!

Taste Test: Creme Caramel Instant Dessert Mix


I picked up an instant Crème Caramel dessert mix from a neighborhood grocery store the other day, instead of bringing home an individual flan like I usually do. Each pre-prepared flan costs about a dollar each, and this package is only $2 and makes four custards, so I just saved myself $2, plus all the plastic containers that just go to waste after one use.

I put the dessert through the test taste and here are my thoughts … but first, the recipe!

Creme Caramel with Caramel Sauce from Dr. Oetker
(Makes 4 servings)


① In a saucepan over medium heat, bring 1-1/2 cup milk to a boil.


② Pour caramel sauce (included in package) into four dessert dishes.


③ Dissolve contents of custard pouch in 1/2 cup cold milk.


④ Whisk custard mix into a saucepan.


⑤ Bring to a gentle boil, stirring constantly. Simmer and stir for one minute. Mixture does not thicken.


⑥ Pour carefully into prepared dessert dishes. Chill for 30 minutes. To serve, loosen edge with knife and turn onto dessert plate.


The Verdict:

The Crème Caramel was not bad at all. It’s super sweet and you can actually taste the evaporated milk and eggs (or whatever artificial ingredients they use to mimic the flavors). I ate mine after only refrigerating the custard for an hour and it was still very soft and loose. I would probably let it sit for at least a few hours, or overnight, for a firmer texture. All in all, this was a success and I will definitely make it again!

Update: I had another serving of the flan, and this time, it sat in the refrigerator for about more than six hours. I found that the consistency was still very soft. Don’t get me wrong, it’s silky and delicious this way, but you might be a bit disappointed if you prefer a little “bouncier” texture like I do.

I’m sure the homemade kind made from scratch would taste much better but most recipes that I researched use tons of egg yolks (like seven in some recipes!), condensed milk AND evaporated milk, and I got scared! The packaged version somehow lessens the guilt …although I know it’s only my wishful thinking.

A Sweet, Sweet Gift


A group of wonderful ladies from a collegiate hockey team that Kevin coaches showered us with heartwarming baby gifts – a handwritten card signed by the entire team and a Kate Spade Stevie diaper bag!

This was a total surprise. You should have seen my face when Kevin walked in with a giant Kate Spade box one night. I now carry this bag everywhere I go with Pon Pon because it makes me feel like a chic mom that actually cares about style … which, in reality, am totally not. lol

We are so blessed to have such great people in our lives.


Now that things are starting to settle down a bit (translation: we can sleep for an hour at night now — yipee!), I was able to sneak into the kitchen for a few hours this morning to bake my favorite chocolate chip cookies for the ladies as a thank you gift!

I used the Neimen Marcus recipe and made four batches of these heavenly munchies. I don’t think I’ve made such a large batch before — the entire apartment and I smelled like butter all day!


I stuck a Lavender and Olive sticker on the box for a little personal touch! I hope they enjoy the sugar rush after their game tonight!

Caramel Muffins for Valentine’s Day


Ever since I received an amazing homemade caramel sauce from my sister in law for Christmas a few years ago, I’ve wanted to try making it myself. I’ve never been much of a caramel person, but the homemade version that I tasted converted me into a fan of the ooey gooey sweet goodness.  I still don’t eat it all that often but I certainly crave it once in a while!

My husband and I don’t usually celebrate Valentine’s Day (we thrifties can’t stand the hiked-up prices at restaurants and spend money on overpriced flowers and gifts lol ), but I used today as an excuse to indulge in this super sweet treat. I was also in the mood for something cake-y so I decided to make Caramel Muffins — the best of both worlds!

pink lineMaking the Caramel Sauce
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Inspired by this video instruction but modified slightly!

— 1 cup of granulated sugar
— ½ cup milk (many recipes call for heavy cream but I used 2% milk)
— 5 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut in pieces


① Warm the milk in low heat. Pour the sugar in a separate sauce pan and melt in high heat.  I learned that the key to caramel making is to work quickly so make sure to have the milk and butter close by!


② The sugar will begin to turn dark after a few minutes.


③ Stir the sugar until it melts into a golden, or even amber-colored syrup.


④ Once the sugar is completely melted, add the butter and stir. Your kitchen will start to smell sweet and lovely right around now!


⑤ Once the butter is melted, remove the pan from the heat (or simply turn off the heat), add the warm milk, and stir. The bubbles will rise but there’s nothing to worry about. Just keep on stirring.


⑥ That’s it! Cool the caramel sauce for a few minutes.


You can simply enjoy the caramel sauce without using it in muffins. It’s great on vanilla (or any flavor) ice cream, in coffee drinks, or just out of the jar! You can transfer the leftover caramel sauce in a clean jar. Let the sauce come to a room temperature before closing the lid.

(You will get a lot more sauce than you see here.)


pink lineMaking the Caramel Muffins
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Ingredients (makes 8 muffins):
Recipe inspired by Asuka, from a Japanese blog お菓子と猫とパリ.

— 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
— 75 grams granulated sugar
— 180 grams cake flour (Don’t fret if you only have all-purpose flour. Simply remove 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour and replace them with 2 tablespoons cornstarch. I learned this wonderful trick from Joy the Baker)
— 2 eggs
— 1 tablespoon baking powder
— 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
— The caramel sauce (I put some aside for later use)


① Preheat the oven to 375 degree F.  Line the muffin tin with baking cups (I used my reusable silicon cups) and set aside.

② Cream together the butter and sugar in a bowl. Add the eggs, one at a time, and vanilla extract and mix well.  Don’t be lazy here — you need to beat the heck out of the mixture!  I used a hand-held mixer for this since my KitchenAid stand mixer was too heavy for me to carry into the kitchen!

③ Add the flour and baking powder, and mix. Don’t over mix here, as the dough can get tough.

④ Add the caramel sauce and mix lightly.


⑤ Pour the mixture into a lined muffin tin.  Drizzle a little bit of the leftover caramel sauce (about one tablespoon each) on top of each muffin, for a crunchy muffin top!

⑥ Bake in the oven for about 25-30 minutes, or until the inserted toothpick comes out clean.

⑦ Let them cool on a cooling rack.


pink lineThe Verdict!
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I must admit that these muffins didn’t come out perfect in terms of looks but they are still very delicious nonetheless.  I think you’ll especially enjoy them if you’re a caramel lover!  These muffins have more of the texture of an airy cake than a typical muffin, probably because of the cake flour that was used, instead of the usual all-purpose kind.  .

I know that eight muffins are an odd number (most recipe makes 12) but that works out better for me so I won’t end up eating them all!  lol  Although every bite is worth it, be warned that these little innocent-looking muffins are super buttery, sugary and incredibly high in calories.  Definitely consume in moderation!


These are the orchids that I received from my mother on my birthday last month! It’s not a bouquet of roses, but they are still so beautiful and very appropriate for this romantic day!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine’s Day, if you celebrate this Hallmark holiday! My husband and I had a not-so-sexy Chinese takeout for dinner tonight but I couldn’t be happier spending the evening with the love of my life.

Little Bun in the Oven


Pregnancy can bring many surprises to expecting mothers, but this one definitely caught me by surprise — I’ve been told on several occasions that I’m tiny! Okay, when people say this, they don’t mean that I’m tiny but that my stomach is smaller than that of an ordinary 20-plus-week pregnant woman. The former would have been a fabulous compliment, but being told that my stomach seems underdeveloped definitely brings a concern, especially when it comes from your own baby doctor!

From the time I discovered that I’m pregnant, at around 14 weeks, to now, I’m down about 12 pounds from my normal weight. Most of the poundage came off during the first trimester but I haven’t been able to add much more, even as my appetite returned to almost normal. This was definitely a source of my worry and insecurity for the last few weeks.

Luckily, during my last prenatal appointment, I had my belly measured and learned that Pon Pon is growing right on schedule. She’s at around two pounds and 14 inches, spot on with the average 27-week bun in the oven!razz

A lesson learned here – everyone is different and there is no reason to be worried just because you might think you’re a little different from the mom-to-be next door. Instead of feeling insecure, I’m now considering myself truly, truly lucky that I’m still able to feel comfortable with no back pain, no swelling, and no cramps – symptoms that usually come with an expanding belly. I know that my stomach will expand rapidly as I enter the third trimester, so I’m going to enjoy this “tininess” while it lasts!


On the topic of food … I made some steamed bread for snack this afternoon. I was craving something sweet but not in the form of cookies or anything buttery, so I went to my go-to recipe for the Japanese mushi (steamed) pan (bread).

This is a wonderful recipe! The bread comes out fluffy and nicely chewy, stay moist even the next day. All the ingredients are things that most of us have sitting around in a pantry, and there’s no milk or eggs so it’s health friendly (if you don’t put in chocolate chips, of course). It’s still high in carbs but it is a much better alternative to a calorie-laden cupcakes. You can add matcha green tea powder and azuki (sweet red beans) for Japanese-inspired flavors!

Steamed Bread (Mushi Pan)
Inspired by a recipe from Cookpad.com.


150 g flour
40 g sugar (I used brown sugar)
4 g baking powder
150 ml water
Sprinkle of salt
Handful of chocolate chips


Measure and mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. Add water and mix some more (but not too much). Divide and pour the mixture into 5 cupcake linings (I used my trusted silicon liners) and sprinkle a little bit of chocolate chips on top. Steam for 15-30 minutes.  Enjoy!