Dorayaki with Mochi ~ 餅入りどら焼き

I love Dorayaki. Dorayaki is a delicious Japanese dessert consisting of two castella (Japanese sponge cake) pancakes filled with sweet azuki red bean paste. There are various variations of Dorayaki – green tea flavor, with chestnuts, filled with whipping cream, etc…

My best friend in Japan sent me a care package filled with delectable goodies…one such treat was the Dorayaki with Gyuhi from Warakunosato (和楽の里). Gyuhi is a softer version of mochi (Japanese rice cake)…it is a translucent white, delicate, chewy confection. You may have noticed Gyuhi before in the topping section at frozen yogurt shops. The pancakes were moist, light, and fluffy…the Tsubuan (chunky red bean paste) was perfectly sweet and had good-sized whole beans intact. I loved all the textures of the Dorayaki, but my favorite part was the Gyuhi 🙂 Green tea/matcha accompanies this wagashi (traditional Japanese confection) nicely.

If you prefer video reviews, check out this link and enjoy 🙂

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close-up

 

 

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Veggie Ramen at Whole Foods Orlando

Did you know that the Whole Foods in Orlando had a ramen bar?? It sure was a pleasant surprise for me. We were there on a Saturday night, and they were serving ramen until 7:30pm that night. We got there just in time at 7:20pm 🙂

 

We got a bowl of the $8.99 Veggie Ramen (light veggie broth, mayu, scallions, red ginger, steamed mixed veggies, black mushrooms, seaweed, ajitsuke-tamago (marinated boiled egg on the side)). It’s hard to find vegetarian ramen (especially with a vegetarian broth), so I was super excited. The broth was nicely flavored – it had a soy sauce ginger flavor. The veggies were plentiful and the noodles were cooked well. I enjoyed the ajitsuke tamago, but I wish it had both halves of the egg (especially since I was sharing).

On the counter, they have some spices you can add to your ramen – white pepper, crushed chili blend, and fried garlic. The fried garlic was almost empty, so it seems to be a popular choice. I mean, who doesn’t like garlic? Since I don’t like spicy food, I just added the white pepper and fried garlic, and they added a nice zest to the ramen.

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beautiful ramen up-close

Apparently, you can also add “extras” to your bowl. Next time I share a bowl of ramen, I will opt to add some extra noodles and ajitsuke-tamago…or maybe I will get my own bowl 😉