eats, Kyoto, summer eat, sweet eat

Mango-banana spring ice-cream

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working from home on saturdays has it’s perks. this is one of them. taking a break with non-cream ice-cream. and also the sunny color matched this week-end’s sunny weather. mental note to always keep frozen banana and mango at home.

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1 small banana, frozen in pieces
a handfull of frozen mango
a knifes point of vanilla bean powder

coconut flakes for topping

put the fruit on the counter for a while so that it’s not deep frozen. then, in a mixer put the banana, mango and vanilla powder. mix until smooth. top with coconut flakes. eat.

(oh and the wonderful flowers are from a couple of years ago in a blooming Kyoto)

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2014. All rights reserved.

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any day eat, eats, fast eat, Japan, salt eat

The simple mushroom soba bowl

so it’s time for my next favorite noodle. feels like that’s about what i have time to cook at the moment – school’s started.. even though this means that autumn is on it’s way i feel like there’s still room for summer, trying to enjoy the late summer treats the nature offers. stockholm is fantastic right now and i spent my saturday in the sun on the water, indulging every bit of it. by the way, if you want to add some proteins i’d go for a few slices of fried tofu.

By the temple | piecefully  in Kyoto.
Mushroom soba bowl | piecefully

the bowl
japanese soba (buckwheat) noodles enough for one person
4 big mushrooms (I used portabella and champingons)
1/4 of a leek
a handfull of baby spinache
toasted and ground sesame seeds (with shell)
sea salt & pepper

the dressing
1 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp rice vinegar
a finger tip of wasabi

this is truly very simple. start by mixing the ingredients for the dressing and set aside. slice the mushrooms and the leek and fry them in some oil while cooking the noodles.when the noodles are done rinse briefly in cold water. mix noodles, mushrooms and greens top with sesame seeds and season with the dressing.

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2013. All rights reserved.

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eats, fast eat, Japan, sweet eat

Coconut and yoghurt ice-cream

if you have an ice-cream maker at hand – this is a super fast after dinner treat. (i make up reasons to bring out mine)

Cherries | piecefullyCoconut and yoghurt ice-cream | piecefully Cherry blossoms | piecefully Coconut and yoghurt ice-cream | piecefully

perfect for 2 people
1 can of coconut milk (400 ml)
1/2 dl (50 ml) turkish/greek yoghurt
1 1/2 star anise, pounded in a mortar (or why not caradamom?)
2 tbsp honey
coconut flakes
cocoa nibs
cherries, for serving

put the can of coconut milk in the freezer for 30-60 min (or keep it in the fridge for a couple of hours). then scoop out the creamy part, leaving the water out. stir together the coconut cream, yoghurt, star anise and honey (flavor with more honey if you want it sweeter). pour into the ice-cream maker and when almost done add some cocoa nibs and coconut flakes. put the ice-cream in an airtight container and keep in the freezer for 1-2 hours. i’m afraid keeping it for too long in the freezer will make this ice-cream too icy… is best served freshly whipped up. with some cherries on top. the star anise just gives of a hint of flavor and the yoghurt a nice sour tang.

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2013. All right reserved.

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any day eat, baked eat, eats, Japan, Kyoto, Nara, salt eat, vegeterian eat

Popcorn bread, lemon-honey butter and temples

Nara and Kyoto has such beauty. especially at dusk. and it’s not only the beauty of the surroundings, it’s the whole atmosphere these old cities contain that has such great appeal.

tōdai-ji (東大寺) meaning the eastern great temple, is situated in central Nara and it’s main hall contains the world’s biggest bronze buddah. the building is incredible and even though it was my third time visiting the place i stood in awe when facing this open space. we managed to catch it just before closing and the lightning was magnificent.

IMG_5442  corn crisp with popcorn  lemon-honey butter  lemon-honey butter

corn crisp with popcorn and rosemary

50 ml flax seeds
50 ml unsalted sunflower seeds
50 ml unsalted pumpkin seeds
50 ml unpeeled sesame seeds
200 ml corn meal (fine-grained polenta)
1 tsp sea salt (plus some to sprinkle)
fresh rosemary, 1/2 tbsp finely chopped
40 ml olive oil
250 ml boiling water

2 tbsp popcorn kernels (popping them will give you about two handfulls)

put the popcorn in a tbsp of olive oil, in a hot pan with a lid. make sure you move the pan so that the popcorn don’t burn and when the popping stops remove from the heat and set aside. when cool press the popcorn flat with a rolling pin.

put all the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix. pour in the water and olive oil and mix until smooth. spread out the “dough” on baking paper sprinkle with sea salt and spread out the pressed popcorn on top. put another baking paper on top and roll with a rolling pin until the dough covers the paper. bake in the oven at 150 c for an hour. perfect as bread or snacks – the popcorn gives it a nice twist!

lemon-honey butter

5 tbsp butter
a pinch of sea salt
cest from 1/2 a small lemon
1/2 tsp organic honey

mix everything, season more if needed and let sit in the fridge for 10-15 min. serve with artichokes or simply on the above bread.

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drinks, Japan, morning eat, Osaka

Winter oranges in Japan and juice on a summer morning

the past couple of weeks we’ve been making freshly squeezed juice for breakfast every morning. it’s such an easy everyday treat. this got me thinking about how much i miss all the different types of oranges and mandarins you can get hold during the winter season in Japan. summer orange, hassaku, miikan… i don’t even remember half of their names. but i can assure you they are truly wonderful in both flavor and texture, with that perfect combination of sweet and sour.

Winter oranges

this winter i spent two weeks in japan again, meeting up with my former host family ( or well, more like japanese family) for christmas and new years. one morning i decided to go for a walk in the neighborhood of Kubota (久保田) where they live in the southern part of Osaka. the weather was crisp and clear without being cold. walking the tarmac among the houses i spotted this orange tree, lavished with oranges.

Orange-ginger juice

Orange-ginger juice

gingery orange-pink grapefruit juice (enough for one glass)
one orange of your liking
1/2 a grapefruit (i prefer pink)
2×2 cm knob of ginger (peeled)

squeeze the juice and grate the ginger on a fine grater. put in a glass and let sit while preparing the rest of you breakfast (it’s hard, i know, but well worth it as it gives the ginger time to flavor the juice). i assure you this is just as great on a summer day as it is a cold winters morning. all that vitamin C and ginger boosting the immune system… both japanese and korean people eat ginger (you know with the sushi?) or drink it as tea and they both live long, keep slim and have healthy skin. i’m just saying.

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