Hosts seldom offer guests little more than the main course at a dinner party. That is true of western-style dinners as much as it is of those in which sushi is the star of the show, although finding the perfect desserts for the latter can be tricky.
With so much emphasis on fish, seafood, and other savoury elements of Japanese cuisine, people often are at a total loss when it comes to serving something sweet after the main meal. Here are a few suggestions for delectable desserts.
Often filled with ice-cream, or anko (sweet red bean paste) mochi are sweet, sticky rice cakes. They are one of Japan’s favourite treats, and they may be used as ingredients in more complex desserts. They can be tricky to make, especially without the traditional equipment, so it may be easier to purchase them online or at a speciality store or Asian supermarket. It certainly would give you more time to enjoy what’s available at the top New Zealand sports betting sites. If you cannot find mochi, a close approximation is modak, a similar Indian sweet also made using glutinous rice flour.
Japanese people have relished the earthy sweetness of anmitsu for more than 100 years. It is made with anko and cubes of agar, a gelatine-like substance derived from red algae. You can serve it with a traditional black sugar syrup called kuromitsu and fresh fruit, or you can dress it up with chestnuts, mochi, and green tea or matcha-flavoured ice-cream.
Castella is a dense, yellow sponge cake that is produced mainly in the Nagasaki prefecture. Rather than being an entirely Japanese creation, it was introduced by the Portuguese in the 16th century. It was known as Pão de Castela, and the recipe requires little more than flour, eggs, sugar, and starch syrup. As simple as the recipe is, a sugar shortage meant that it was originally eaten by aristocrats. Some bakers alter the recipe by adding brown sugar, honey, or matcha powder.
Created in Tokyo in 1914, dorayaki is made using patty-shaped pancakes of Castella. The cake patties are sandwiched together using anko, chocolate spread, matcha cream cheese, whipped cream, or nuts. Serving dorayaki after your sushi dinner could increase your street cred. The dessert was named as the favourite one of anime character, Doraemon.
Forget about two miserable, flat little pieces of toast, soggy with honey and condensation. Japanese honey toast, a popular sweet item in the country’s cafes, comes in the form of a wodge of toast. After liberal lashings of honey have been applied, it gets topped with ice-cream and fresh fruit.
Don’t Forget Tea
You cannot go wrong serving tea with dessert. However, try to keep the theme going, rather than relying on plain old Ceylon. Instead, try green tea or matcha, unless you have already used it as a flavouring in your dessert. An alternative is to serve jasmine tea or, if you have a glass teapot, to really wow your guests with blooming tea.