Cook this: Mini microwave matcha pudding cakes

Monday morning. You’re meant to be rested and ready to go on Monday mornings. As I begin to type this on Sunday night, I get the feeling that’s not going to be the case for me. A lifelong insomniac, I’m also struggling with depression and anxiety and disordered eating. Throw all that into the cauldron along with how busy things are getting in the lead up to Christmas (not very compatible with a textbook introvert who gets her energy from being along rather than in big social situations), a particularly frustrating work situation that I’m stuck with at the moment, and my body struggling to adjust to some new medication, and it’s just, well…. yeah. So at this point, every Monday I can get through in one piece is a massive win right now!

I know a lot of people like to reward themselves for getting through another Monday unscathed; for some, it’s a beer or a nice glass of wine. For others, it’s a spot of online shopping. Or maybe watching their favourite guilty pleasure trashy TV show. Personally, I like a cup of tea on the couch in my PJs with a little something sweet to eat. So if I get through today, this is what I’m gonna be treating myself with.

This is a magical little cup of happiness, based on the recipe I used for the chocolate mug cake. Other than the matcha powder, it uses staple pantry ingredients that you should always have handy, and it only takes about 5 minutes start to finish, so it’s the perfect end-of-the-day treat 🙂 I also like to use pandan kaya on top of mine, because it tastes fantastic with the matcha – this is the stuff I use, which I get from ARC Asian Grocers at Preston Market. It’s SO GOOD!!!

 

To make one big pudding cup or two small ones:
– ¼ cup plain flour or almond meal (if I have almond meal, I like a 50/50 mix)
– ½ tsp matcha powder
– ¼ tsp baking powder
– ½ tbsp caster sugar
– ½ tbsp shredded coconut
– ¼ cup milk (I like almond milk for this)
– 1½ tbsp vegetable oil
– optional – a few strawberries or raspberries, pandan kaya

And then:
1. Combine all the dry ingredients in a coffee mug or tea cup.
2. Add in the wet ingredients and stir to combine completely.
3. If you want to add in berries, stir them in now.

4. Microwave for 1 – 2 minutes, depending on how strong your microwave is.
5. Take it out, let it cool for a minute, top with pandan kaya and a little more shredded coconut if you want, and enjoy!

I hope everyone has a good Monday; make sure you make time to do a little something for yourself, and if you need a little treat tonight, I hope you can enjoy a matcha pudding cup, too!

Cook this: Coconut chia matcha pancakes 

While I’m a big matcha fan, husband hasn’t always been so receptive to it; why have green tea for dessert when you can have chocolate? So, Tokyo was a lot of fun for me in that I got to indulge my matcha sweet tooth, a lot. I ate matcha ice cream crepes, matcha cookies and cakes (a whole lot of which I took home with me), matcha chocolates; I even bought myself a little jar of matcha at one of the markets I visited to take home with me and experiment with. Husband’s curiosity got the better of him, and he tried a white chocolate matcha cookie; he was instantly hooked. So, I thought I’d try my hand at some coconut matcha pancakes (adapted from my buttermilk pancake recipe) for breakfast club yesterday morning…

Ingredients (makes 8 pancakes):
– 1⅓ cups self raising flour
– 2 tbsp castor sugar
¼ cup coconut (flakes, shredded, whatever)
– 2 tsp matcha powder
– 2 tbsp chia seeds
– 40g butter, melted
– 1 large egg, lightly whisked
– 1 cup coconut cream
½ cup milk (I used almond, but you can use anything)
– butter or spray oil for cooking

Putting them together:
1. Combine the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, coconut, matcha and chia) in a large tub – with the lid on, shake it well to combine (it’s just less messy than mixing it in a bowl if you’re anything like me first thing in the morning – lacking coordination and control, flour just goes everywhere).

2. Tip the flour mix into a large mixing bowl, and add in the wet ingredients (melted butter, egg, coconut cream and milk), and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon. If the batter seems a little dry, add a little more milk; if it’s too watery, add a little more flour.

3. Heat a non-stick fry pan on medium heat, add a little butter or spray with cooking oil, and drop your pancake batter on – I use a ⅓ measuring cup of batter per pancake.

4. Cook for a few minutes on each side, until cooked through and golden on top.

They come out a beautiful, dense pancake, but still somehow a little fluffy inside. I used a little coconut Chobani and blueberries on top, and it was a pretty delicious breakfast! I’m going to pass it off as healthy, too, because there’s a ton of “super food” business going on in these. The other big plus is that they’re really quick to throw together, which means they don’t have to just be a special occasion/weekend breakfast option. And judging from the happy husband and empty plate, I’m tipping they’ll be making more regular appearances on our breakfast table…