With so much food talk going around it gets you hungry. All those nice pictures, those wonderful *imaginary* scents… Then you discover you’re really on some diet and your life merriment gets down to mud pool. No worries, you just need to think inside the boundaries.
As I am currently testing my courage with anko (smooth sweet red bean paste), because I happen to adore that thing. Haven’t made it at home yet though, because I’ve never really searched for the azuki beans. Yet I happened on them one day and thought to give it a try.
I had daifuku 10 years ago at a local Japanese restaurant. They pretty much stopped serving it after that, leaving only the most typical thing like green tea cake. And I’m not talking about matcha cake, I’m talking about big green leaf tea inside sweet filling sort of cake…
I’ve felt cheated each time I’ve visited Japanese restaurants since then, because it’s a shame they have brought over the Japanese salty dishes (and even here we could complain that onigiri as a takeaway is actually very fun if they’d serve it – hint anyone?), yet not one of them serve their sweets. Especially that I’ve discovered through experimenting that some of them aren’t that hard to make. Given, of course, that mine look like clomps of weirdos compared to their esthetically perfect beauties, which I’m dead on addicted and collecting pictures of.
So, as we do have folks in the family, who have to mind their medical diets, and that’s pretty much the only type of diet I accept, I’m turning my eyes back towards Japanese kitchen (and Chinese) and look what I can bring over in the cold Estonian winter to bring some variations to sweets department for them. You can find sweets for gluten free, casein free, egg free diet, but it’s the cakes department that’s a bit sad. Like, everything has chocolate put in to hide the unfamiliar tastes of the flours. Which, being the person who tolerates chocolate only in hot cocoa, is challenging. I am not the one, who has to live on that diet, but still. It’s an interesting challenge.
So to change that, I’m testing out their bean stuff again. And if it works, I’ll be one happy camper. For, if I get the hang of it, I’m gonna start testing manju, daifuku, and mochi, and mantou, and… hmm… I think I know a place where I can get my hands on shiratamako.