Friday, February 4, 2011

Pancake mix and cookies

I have a recipe book, courtesy of Japan and someone special, which claims to be able to make anything (But realistically, a wide range of things) from Japanese hot cake mix. However, there are two problems with this cookbook.

1. It's in Japanese.
2. Japanese 'hot cake mix' and the humble pancake mix which one can purchase in New Zealand are most likely very different.

Regardless of these issues however, I have finally decided to launch myself into the world of pancake/hot cake mix treats after half a year of speculation.

The recipes in this book range from pancakes and hotcakes to donuts, scones, cookies, cakes, steamed buns and tarts, and claims to transform your average Joe pancake mix into marvelous 'cafe-style' sweets (as far as my Japanese skills can determine, anyway).

Japanese food is known (to the best of my knowledge) as being immaculately presented as well as made. I've been to Japan twice and I can most definitely confirm this to be true. Meals in japan aren't a giant burger slapped on a plate with fries and maybe sauce in a pattern which aims to give the illusion of caring about presentation. Japanese school children, for example take their obento (lunch boxes) to school, filled with frankfurter octopi and rice shaped into their favourite anime characters. If they spend such time and effort on school lunches, one can only imagine the precision that goes into restaurant meals.

Anyway, despite that sidetrack, time for the recipe.

First of all, however I would like to say that there is not guarantee that this recipe will work for you because of differences in hotcake mix. I personally think, however, that on most occasions it will work - the outcome will probably be slightly different depending on the mix you use. For example, the cookie in the book looked a great deal more solid than the one I made. Nevertheless, it was deliciously melt-in-the-mouth soft, a combination which worked really well with the flavours.

Lemon Sugar Cookies, from:'うちカフェおやつ'


180g Hot Cake mix
110g butter, at room temperature
45g caster sugar
1 egg yolk
The zest of one lemon
a little sugar and beaten egg

1. Beat butter and sugar together until light and creamy.
2. Mix in egg yolk thoroughly, then add hot cake mix and mix with a wooden spoon until just combined. Finally, mix in lemon zest.
3. Place dough in a large sheet of glad wrap and shape into a cylinder, with a diameter of around 2-3 cm. Cool in refrigerator for about 1 hour.
4. Preheat oven to 170 degrees C. Remove from refrigerator and glad wrap. Brush edges with a little beaten egg and sprinkle with sugar. Finally, cut dough into 1cm thick circles. Place on an oven tray with baking paper and bake for 8-10 minutes, until golden.

Enjoy :)