I love Japan. This is probably an understatement. The North East of England has slowly but surely caught on to the variety of foods that other countries can offer. For a long time we only had one sushi restaurant. I’m happy to report that we now have at least 3 that I’m aware of. Wagamama posed quite a revolution when it first opened its doors and we all queued down the street for a chance to eat some gorgeous food.
Traditionally Japanese food focuses more on savoury things rather than cakes I found this fantastic recipe for a Green Tea Drizzle Cake in the Wagamama cookbook.
I went to Japan last year after dreaming about it for many, many years. I love that pretty much everything has green tea in it. I ate so much Green Tea ice cream…
went to a Tea Ceremony,
dressed up in kimono
and ate tonnes of sushi and noodles and maple leaf cakes (if I can find a recipe I will be attempting this very soon!)
I’m quite adventurous when it comes to food and when in Japan of course I’m going to experiment a bit further, so yes I ate Bento boxes on the bullet train til they were coming out of my ears, (octopus legs and all)
but I drew the line at raw horse meat which was almost eaten by accident, slightly lost in translation somewhere…
Luckily during my Hello Kitty splurges I also insisted on purchasing Matcha (Green Tea Powder although the bamboo whisk is yet to see daylight and is still sealed in its packet at the back of the cupboard) My Asian cooking obsessions mean that I regularly purchase bizarre things from the Chinese Supermarkets, so I have a cupboard full of tapioca pearls, jasmine essence and of course gunpowder green tea.
We had friends coming round for takeaway and I thought Green Tea Cake would be a perfect light end to the meal. It was quite a quick bake too, so just enough time to whip up a double batch as I wanted to bake one to take with me to my friends house the night after too.
Unlike a normal sponge cake, the sugar and eggs were beaten together in a bain marie until it tripled in size.
then flour, baking powder and matcha powder were folded in.
I divided the batter between the 2 tins and set them away to bake whilst I brewed up the strongest green tea I’ve ever made. It goes against my tea teachings to use boiling water when brewing green tea, but that’s what the recipe called for so I followed the instructions, wincing at the bitter green tea smell.
I sieved the stewed tea to separate out the leaves and then reduced the tea down to a syrup with sugar.
When the cakes they had to rest in their tins until cooled. I pierced the top of the cakes with a skewer and then poured the syrup generously over the 2 cakes.
They needed a little more resting and then wrestling out of the sugary tins, as the syrup hardened and required some brute force to release the cakes. Normally with a drizzle cake I use a solid tin and can dunk it in hot water to release it, but as this wasn’t water tight with a loose bottom I didn’t want to drown it before we had a chance to eat it!
Having saved a little syrup back, I ‘spiked’ the crème fraiche with green tea.
I usually don’t like cream on the side of my cakes, but this was divine! The cake didn’t taste anything like how it smelt, which to be honest wasn’t the best smelling cake I’ve made. (Nor was it the prettiest!)
It was clean tasting and refreshing, with a crispy coating on the outside and soft and moist on in the inside. Beautiful! I would definitely recommend this to anyone.
Things that I used to make my Matcha Green Tea Drizzle Cake (Courtesy of Wagamama Cookbook)
This will make 1 Matcha Green Tea Drizzle Cake. I doubled these ingredients and made 2 cakes at the same time. (Just in case you’re feeding a few people! The cake should serve about 6-8 people)
For the cake
- 110 g plain flour
- 10 g matcha (powdered green tea – you can get this in most oriental supermarkets)
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 75 g butter
- 110 g caster sugar
- 4 eggs
For the green tea syrup
- 2 tbsp green tea leaves (I used gunpowder loose green tea leaves to make the syrup)
- 150 ml boiling water
- 150 g caster sugar
- Don’t forget to save a little of the syrup to spike the crème fraîche with!
- about 200 g crème fraîche to serve
Looks like a lovely cake. It’s so nice to see and hear about your experiences in Japan. I went once a very long time ago and would like to visit again. You look great in the kimono 🙂
Ooh where abouts did you visit when you were in Japan? I loved getting dressed up, it was one of the many highlights of the trip. I don’t think i could manage to wear a full kimono everyday though, especially in that heat! Although my posture would be fantastic if I did 🙂
Nice photos, Lauren. And since you made it, I might try this cake sometime: I like green tea. although I find green tea ice cream a bit much.
Thanks Sharyn! I would definitely recommend making this cake and the creme on the side, was so delicious! It’s got to be good for you too I think, all those anti oxidents 🙂
All the food in these photos look amazing! Nice cake 🙂
Thank you so much! 🙂
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Thank you! The cake was lovely. I’m loving your blog, so many beautifully decorated breads!!
Looks like you had a fantastic trip! That gigantic bowl of noodles looks amazing!!
Thank you. It was a brilliant trip. Those noodles were so refreshing. They were cold Soba noodles with hot and sour soup on the side. Delicious! Didn’t think cold noodles would be very nice but it was so hot outside they were very welcome.
Nice pics. Japan looks great!
Thank you! Japan is amazing, well worth a visit!
Oh Lauren you have brought back so many memories. I lived in Japan for 4 years. Met hubby there which is why I chose Yuzu Cupcakes and Sakura cupcakes for my first GBBO episode. So much sentimental value or Natzukassheee as they say over there. thank you for a lovely post xx
Thank you so much for your kind comments Urvashi! Wow 4 years in Japan that’s fantastic! Were you working out there? I bet that was an amazing experience and you have some brilliant stories to tell. Ps. I loved your sakura cupcakes! x x x
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So there I was, looking for pictures of cakes, and (not surprisingly) I ended up here. But I can’t leave without telling you how heart-stoppingly beautiful that ice-cream-parlour photo is. Happy baking!
Ah thank you so much Hannah! I love that photo too! Thanks for stopping by! X