From Tokyo with Love (for Food)

Archive for November, 2014

Apple Rose Tartlets

These tartlets make a cute treat for afternoon tea or a nice present for a friend. They can also be made with pie sheet to save time, and to get a fluffier texture. In that case, roll the pie sheet to a 30 cm long and cut in 1 1/2 cm thick slices. Line the apples on the slices and roll to a rose shape.
I had some almond powder that needed to be used, so I made a tart crust version.

Apple Rose Tartlets (8 pcs)

30 g butter
30 g sugar
1 egg yolk
20 g almond powder
90 g plain flour

Apple filling:
1 middle sized apple
25 g sugar
10 g butter
Cinnamon to taste

1) Make the dough first. Whisk the soft butter and sugar in a bowl until the mixture turns white and a bit fluffy.
2) Add the egg yolk little by little while mixing well.
3) Add the flour and almond powder using a sieve, and mix with a spatula. Don’t knead though!
4) Make the dough a one ball, and wrap with cling film. Mold to rectangular shape and let it rest in a fridge at least an hour.
5) Meanwhile make the filling. Wash the apple well, take off the core and cut in half. Cut in 1 mm thin slices vertically.
6) Put the slices in a heat resistant bowl, add sugar, cubed butter and cinnamon to your liking. Put on a cling film and heat in a 600 W microwave for 4 1/2 mins.
7) Mix once and let cool down. When cooled down, move to a sieve to cut the liquid.
8) If you use tartlet tins, spread them with butter. (I was lazy and made them without tins though…)
9) Take the dough out of fridge and cut to 8 pieces. Put a piece of wrap on a table and move one ball of dough on it. Cover with another piece of wrap and roll to 2 mm thin round. Cover the tin with the dough, and picket it with a fork. Repeat for the rest dough.
10) Bake in a 180°C oven for 10 mins.
11) Line 6 slices of apple on the table, partly on each other. Roll to a rose shape. Add layers until they are the size you want.
12) Put the rose on the tartlet, bake another 5 mins.

If you want, you can also add custard cream, but in that case be sure to bake the crust well.


Gratin-style Bread with Autumn Vegetables

Those who have visited a Japanese bread shop know that they are filled with original shaped and flavoured breads. There is roughly speaking 3 categories – sweet kashipan, savoury o-kazupan, and shokupan, bread for daily consuming, meaning white toast-like loaf bread.

Anpan (sweet red bean paste filling bread), kuriimupan (custard filling bread) and melonpan (soft bread topped with crunchy cookie dough) are probably the most known kashipan, but the varieties are many more.

However, most o-kazupan use cheese, mayonnaise, bacon and sausages – sometimes combined with season’s vegetables. So it’s time to get creative!

Gratin-Style Bread with Autumn Vegetables (8 pcs)

200 g plain flour
20 g sugar
4 g dry yeast
20 g egg
100 cc milk
20 g butter
1/2 tsp salt

White sauce:
25 g plain flour
25 g butter
300 cc milk
A hint of white pepper

Vegetables for filling:
1/2 pack of shimeji mushrooms
1 potato
1/4 onion
40 g bacon
1/2 tsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp soy sauce

For finishing touch:
Some beaten egg
Grated cheese
Dried parsley

1) Make the dough first. Put half of the flour in a bowl, and put sugar and yeast next to each other on it.
2) Put the other half of the flour, salt and cubed butter in another bowl.
3) Pour the egg in the first bowl, but not on the yeast and sugar. Warm the milk to 42°C and pour on the yeast and sugar. Mix well with a wooden spatula.
4) Add the ingredients in the second bowl to the mixture, and mix until the “flourness” is gone.
5) Move the dough to a table, and knead by hand. When the dough comes nicely in shape, roll with both hands like drawing the alphabet V.
6) Move in a bowl, put a wrap on it and let proof in 40°C for 25 mins.
7) Prepare the vegetables next. Peel the potato and onion, cut the potato in bite-size and onion in thin slices vertically. Cut the stalk of the shimeji off, and rip in smaller bunches by hand. Cut the bacon in 1 cm slices.
8) Boil the potato cubes in salted water for 5 mins. Put 1/2 tsp of oil on a frying pan, and fry bacon over medium heat. Add onion slices and fry until they become transparent. Add the mushrooms and 1/2 tsp of soy sauce and mix quickly. When the potatoes are finished, add to the mixture and let cool down.
9) When the dough has become double the original size, push it down to get the excess air out. Move to table and cut in 8 pieces. Shape in balls and let them rest under wrap for 15 mins.
10) Prepare the white sauce. Put flour and butter in a microwave safe bowl (glass bowl is recommended), put a wrap on the bowl and heat in 600 W microwave for 2 mins. Mix well with a whisk.
11) Add 1/3 of the milk mixing well at the same time. Add the rest of the milk, mix and put the wrap on. Heat again on 600 W for 7 mins.
12) Mix well, put the wrap back on and heat another 2 mins 30 s.
13) Mix and add a hint of white pepper for taste. Add also the vegetables prepared in 8).
14) Line up 8 aluminum foil cups (Ø 8cm) on a oven plate. Take one ball of the dough and flatten by hand making a round fitting to the foil cup. Place nicely in foil cup and picket with a fork. Prepare all the rest dough balls in the same way.
15) Fill with the gratin sauce, put the wrap and moist cloth on them, and let proof in 40°C for 30 mins.
16) Brush the dough parts with beaten egg, sprinkle some grated cheese on the top, and bake in a 180°C oven for 13-15 mins.
17) Garnish with parsley and serve for lunch or night snack.

Foil-Steamed Salmon with Miso-Mayonnaise Sauce


This is really simple but delicious dish. The fish is steamed in an aluminum foil wrapping together with vegetables, so all the umami from the fish is put in good use. What is great about this dish is that there will be no pots and pans to wash afterwards!

Foil-Steamed Salmon with Miso-Mayonnaise Sauce (for 2 persons)

2 fillets of salmon
1 1/2 tbs mayonnaise
1/2 tsp miso paste

1/2 onion
3 cm of carrot
1/2 pack shimeji mushrooms
4 snow peas
Salmonfoilyakiteishoku1) Peel the carrot and cut in 6 slices. If you want, you can carve them to flower shape. Warm in microwave (500 W) for 1 min.
2) String the snow peas and boil quickly. Cool down and cut in half diagonally.
3) Cut off the stalk of the shimeji mushrooms and rip in smaller bunches by hand.
4) Cut the onion to thin slices. Take 2 pieces of foil, and put the onion slices on them.
5) Mix the mayonnaise and miso well. Put the salmon fillets on the onion slices, and brush the sauce on the fish.
6) Place the shimeji and carrot slices next to the fish. Close the foil partly.
7) Bake in 250°C oven for 20-23 mins. If the miso sauce seems to get too dark, close the foil.
8) Garnish with show peas and serve with rice and miso soup.

I had time, so I made a whole menu using autumn vegetables. Satsumaimo (sweet potato) rice, abura-age and green pepper nimono, cherry tomatoes & shunkiku (edible chrysanthemum) with white tofu-peanut sauce, and miso soup.