Quinoa Flat Bread (Gluten Free)

quinoa bread

I came across this recipe on Pinterest a week or so ago and thought one of my gluten-free friends would like it. I didn’t actually intend to make it myself but she happened to come over later that week so we tried it out. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. We didn’t follow the suggestion of putting the pan in the oven and subsequently it wasn’t crispy on the bottom.  The top was delightfully crispy and the Parmesan cheese I sprinkled over the top was great. I wanted to try it again pan fried. I made it twice because I wanted to try a couple of tweaks. I am teaching a hummus class at a local cafe in June and am making pan fried flat bread at the same time. I thought could be a great addition to the lineup as it would taste superb with hummus. Sadly, it didn’t turn out that well panfried. So baked it will remain.

I made a couple small changes to the original recipe.

  • used rice flour instead of quinoa flour (you can make your own by grinding quinoa in a food processor or coffee grinder)
  • baked it for 30 minutes (mine was about twice the thickness of the picture in the original recipe)
  • added a bit of salt, pepper and garlic powder to the dough before baking
  • used olive oil

Where to get quinoa キヌア kinua in Japan

  • supermarkets – some supermarkets carry small bags of quinoa in the rice section. This quinoa is meant to be added a tablespoon at a time to rice as an add-in. The brand I most often see is this one (be careful as they also sell millet in bags that look exactly the same) and it is a perfect size for a couple of batches of quinoa bread. 
  • import shops – you will likely find bigger bags here but still possibly only 400g or so. I often see this bag. You sometimes also find Alishan Organics quinoa in import shops.
  • Health food stores will have medium sized bags.
  • Amazon – here is a link to a search for キヌア
  • Rakuten – here is a link to a search for キヌア
  • Yoyo Market – they carry Alishan Organics quinoa

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Freezing Yakionigiri

fried rice balls yakionigiri

I think one of the first frozen foods I had in Japan was frozen onigiri. The hubby bought them one evening and I was skeptical. I don’t really like frozen food and these seemed to simple to be good. I loved them. Haven’t bought them since but they did inspire me to explore the world of yakionigiri. There have been terrible results in the past but now all is good. I haven’t perfected them but they are pretty good. I usually use the frying pan but I tried them in the riceball plates of my waffle iron and was pleased. It’s so easy. Since I need to have some food prepped in the freezer for work day breakfasts, lunches and dinners, freezing riceballs seemed to be perfect. You can just reheat with miso soup for a quick meal. They are best heated in a toaster oven so they don’t get too soggy. I use the grill setting in my microwave but keep the pan on a lower level than when actually grilling.

Basically, lightly salt the rice and make riceballs. If you need a tutorial, check out this one on Just Hungry. In a small bowl mix a bit of soy sauce and grated ginger. Lightly oil a frying pan and heat up the pan on medium. When the frying pan has heated up, place the rice balls and fry until they are just starting to turn golden. Turn over and either brush or sprinkle with a spoon the ginger soy sauce mixture on the cooked side. Just a little at a time so the riceball doesn’t fall apart. When the other side has started to change color turn over again and repeat with the sauce. Now you can fry them until they turn a deeper color. If you are freezing them, cool them completely before putting them in the freezer. Either thaw at room temperature or microwave for about 30 seconds and then put them in the toaster oven until they look nice and toasty.

Kabocha Coconut Curry Dip

kabocha coconut curry dip

I made this for a little while ago and it was a hit. I was a little worried because the day before I cooked a kabocha that was so dry I couldn’t eat it. While the creaminess varies a lot, I’ve never had such dry kabocha. Luckily the one I used for the dip was nice and creamy.

Kabocha Coconut Curry Dip

1/4 kabocha squash, cooked
1/2 can white beans, drained
18g coconut milk powder
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 – 1 teaspoon salt

Put everything in the food processor and puree until you get a desired texture. You may need to add a bit of water if it is too thick for your liking.

Kinako Walnut Banana Pops

kinako-walnut-banana-pop

This last week summer has ramped up it’s heat and I need to cool down. What better way than with a nice banana pop made with whole foods? Each pop has about 2/3 of a banana so they are a good little kid snack as well. I have been using banana as the base for popsicles for a few weeks now and they seem to be going over well with everyone who tries them.  The ingredients for this recipe also taste good in oatmeal just in case you were wondering.

If you were wondering, the moulds I have are from Ikea and I love them. Each popsicle has its own separate cover and there is a stand to go with. I find it a lot easier to take them out and refill them when they are individual.

kinako-walnut-banana-pop-ingredients

Kinako Walnut Banana Pops

Makes 6 pops

4 bananas
1/4 cup walnuts, chopped finely
1-2 tablespoons kinako (soy bean powder)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mash the bananas in a large bowl and stir in the rest of the ingredients until combined. Fill up your popsicle moulds and freeze until solid.

*Note: if this is your first time using kinako add it slowly as it has a strong flavor

Homemade Taiyaki

homemade-taiyaki

My first apartment with my husband was near a shopping street with a taiyaki place right in the middle. The shopping street led to a train station we used somtimes and taiyaki was the perfect winter hand warmer. When I decided to buy a waffle iron a couple of months ago I decided that it needed to come with taiyaki plates. This was my first attempt at taiyaki batter and I quite liked it. Before I bought the waffle iron I searched online and most recipes were very similar to my pancake recipe. The little booklet that came with the waffle iron had a very different recipe for taiyaki batter and I gave it a go. I think it will be my goto recipe for taiyaki batter. I made a non-traditional savory filling but you can put anything you want in it. I’m thinking nutella would be amazing. If you don’t have taiyaki plates for your waffle iron I imagine you could use the batter with the hot sandwich plates.

Traditional fillers for taiyaki: custard or an (sweet bean paste)

Nontraditional fillers: peanut buter & banana, nutella, stir fry, taco meat and cheese, anything you can think of

Taiyaki batter

from the Mighty Sand Plus One Owners Manual

200 grams flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar (I used 1 as I made a savory filler)
200 milliliters water

Whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together in a medium-sized bowl. Whisk in the sugar and then the water. Let sit for 30 minutes.  After you have preheated the taiyaki iron fill the bottom up with batter, put a spoon full (or a bit more) of the filler in the center and press down a little bit. Add some more batter on top, close the iron and wait until your finished light goes on. Cool a little before eating to prevent burnt tongues.