Matcha Banana Cake with Black Sesame Brittle

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This cake was for my dad’s birthday, which I remembered just in time. With about an hour left in the day. I was just shocked because I never forget, but I guess October just crept in on me.

It’s hard baking for my parents, because they don’t actually like sweets and desserts. Last year while in Paris, I got some pastries from Pierre Hermé as my “birthday cake”, which I freaked out over the entire time eating it (as you can imagine)– scrutinizing and appreciating every component, every layer, every texture. I was so excited. Then my dad said something along the lines of, “this is good, but I’d rather eat lobster”. Um, excuse you dad, but lobsters are BORN delicious (sorry vegetarians/vegans)… these pastries had to be conceived, developed and refined, sourcing the best ingredients, until perfection was attained. Anyway, my point is, it’s really hard to impress my parents with sweet things.

Despite knowing he’d rather have lobster, I thought that at least I’ll make his cake with familiar flavours– matcha and black sesame.

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White Chocolate Honey Matcha Mochi Cake

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Glutinous rice flour is a wonderful thing– when cooked, it’s chewy and dense in the most pleasant way possible. Rice flour comes in two types, either glutinous or non-glutinous. Glutinous rice flour (aka sweet rice flour) is made from grinding short grain sticky rice, and its starch content is very high, making it a great thickening agent. Despite its name, it’s neither sweet nor does it contain gluten. Regular rice flour can be made from medium or long grain rice, and it’s used more commonly in gluten-free baking. I’m super partial towards the glutinous type, just because lots of my childhood favourites were made with glutinous rice flour… I can see myself going through a phase of subbing out regular flour with glutinous flour in my recipes, just to see how well that chewy factor fits with the recipe.

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