Archive for ‘Healthy Muffin’

March 23, 2014

Zucchini Carob Muffin

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

The original recipe was Banana Carob Muffin, but unfortunately bananas don’t last that long in our house until it is ripe enough to cook! So, what’s moist, bland and filling enough to substitute a banana?
Can you guess from the picture?

The answer is ZUCCHINI!
I love it when I can “hide” a veggie in my daughter’s snack 🙂
She loves her Carrot Crackers (a recipe that I must share soon), but that’s because she loves carrots.
She’s not a great fan of green vegetables at the moment, and I hope she can boost up her daily intake by eating these muffins.

Ingredients (to make 24 mini muffins or 12 regular size muffins)

-150g Organic Wholemeal Flour

-50g Organic carob

-1 Tablespoon Aluminum free Baking Powder

-150g zucchini

-200g Organic Soy milk

-80g Organic Agave Syrup

-50g Cold pressed oil (I use rice bran oil)


Step 1: Mix zucchini in food processor for about 1 min, until it is grated into fine bits.
Step 2: Add soy milk, agave syrup and oil and mix for another 30sec.
Step 3: Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl.
Step 4: Pour the liquid mixture into the dry ingredients, fold lightly and pour into muffin tins.
Step 5: Bake in 180C pre heated oven for about 15min (for mini muffins, regular muffins will take about 25  min)

Let it cool in the tin before  you pop the out. I use non-stick muffin tins, but prefer to grease them lightly before I pour the muffin mixture in. It will not rise as much as normal muffins, but this mixture is enough to  fill 24 mini muffin tin to the rim, and you will get fairly good shaped mini muffins as a result.

I think I can reduce the amount of Agave syrup to 50g, but that is up to you and how much you love sweets.

September 29, 2012

Easy Breakfast Bread

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

Hi this is KK, Sushi Artist / Healthy Muffin Maker / Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.

I am not sharing my Japanese recipes these days. Sorry about that! It’s funny because I cook it everyday, but keep on asking myself ,

“Is this worth sharing?”

Then I say “Nah, it’s too simple.” and end up not writing about Japanese food, but more about healthy baking. Oh well,  that’s the reality of Japanese home style cooking. We will have rice and miso soup every day for dinner (almost every day) but the main dish can be very Western/Asian.

Same with breakfast.  At my Nana’s place, she always prepared rice and miso soup and egg and grilled fish for breakfast, plus left overs from the night before, but we don’t eat like that any more! Those meals are only served at Ryokans, when you stay and pay for your breakfast 🙂

For most families, breakfast should be quick and easy, and this is a perfect recipe for busy mums.

I use Triblade from Kenwood to make this bread, and it takes only 20min! Not kidding!

You can use a food processor and make it as fast or even do it by hand. Just measure, mix and bake. That’s all!


Quick easy “bread” mix

-150g Hard flour (Do not use bread mix/bread flour because it may have some ingredients other than flour in it)

-1 teaspoon Aluminium free baking powder

-2 teaspoon olive oil

-80g water


Step 1: Put all the dry ingredients (flour and BP) in Triblade and mix on 3 for 20 sec. Add the wet ingredients and mix on 4 for 30 sec, or until the dough is all sticky and forming a ball.

Step 2: Preheat the oven to 180C, sprinkle some extra flour on a kneading mat (or a clean bench top) and spread the dough (about 20cm wide and 30cm long). Place zucchini/mushroom paste/genovese sauce etc on the dough and roll. Cut into 2cm width and place together to shape a honeycomb (or a tree, square etc). Sprinkle extra olive oil (I use garlic oil) , salt and pepper on top.

Step 3: Bake at 180C for 15min.


Eat it while it’s hot!

The key to this “bread” is to eat it while it’s hot. Because it is so easy and quick to bake, always bake it before you serve. Having no yeast to “raise” the dough, it will get tough as it cools. When it becomes hard, reheat it or serve it with soup. I am sure that they are so good to eat, you don’t have to worry about having left overs!

Happy Cooking!

June 6, 2012

Choc orange cookie in 20 min

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

Hi this is KK, Sushi Artist / Healthy Muffin Maker / Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.

20120607-090614.jpg I ran out of muffins yesterday, and was planning to do another batch, but remembering there was some orange peel in the fridge, I decided to make a choc orange cookie instead!

This is is a modified version of my no-egg, no butter, no sugar cookie, and today, I didn’t even add maple syrup to it!  Because there is plenty of choc chip in it alreday, I thought, “Oh well, I’ll give it a miss” and the result was YUM YUM!


I have to wait till Yumi comes home (she’s at day care now) so she can taste test it.


But I can assure you it’s super easy, and everything (including the baking and cleaning) was done in less than 20min. So, if you need some snack to give your kids in a hurry, try this recipe!


Ingredients (to make 15 cookies)

-200g Organic plain flour

-100g Organic dark chocolate (with more than 70% cacao)

-1 teaspoon Aluminium free baking powder

-1 pinch salt (This is NEW!)

-2 Tablespoon Organic orange rind marmalade

-60g Rice bran oil

-70g Organic soy milk (I added extra soy to match the liquid consistency, if you want to add maple syrup to the recipe, you can do 30g Maple syrup and 40g Soy milk, like in my original recipe)


Method (Well, it’s one step)

Step 1:Pre heat oven to 180C; Put all the ingredients in the food processor and blend for about 30sec, or until the chocolate is chopped,  drop spoonful onto a baking sheet and cook in 180C oven for 12min.


While the cookie is baking, clean your bowl and everything is done! Hope you enjoy it 🙂



June 2, 2012

Yumi and her BBB muffin

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

Hi this is KK, Sushi Artist / Healthy Muffin Maker / Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.


This is my lovely 20 months old daughter Yumi, with her favorite BBB muffin. It’s “Blueberry & Banana”, made with organic wholemeal flour and honey.

20120602-104515.jpg I still have the battle of what to use in my healthy muffin, between honey,maple syrup and raw sugar.


Most of the time, I use raw sugar, because it’s easy and gives me “stable” results. But today, I wanted to use some ripe bananas as the “base” sweetness for my muffin, I chose to use honey, and the result was delicious!


I’m not joking because Yumi ate 5 muffins (regular size!) in one day, it must have been tasty!


To make 12 regular size muffins, I used

-2 very ripe Bananas, mashed

-2 Free range Eggs, lightly beaten

-2 Tablespoon Honey

-60g Rice bran oil (you can use vegetable oil or olive oil)

-180ml Organic soy milk

-300g Wholemeal Organic plain flour

-1 Tablespoon Aluminium free Baking Powder

-30-50 Blueberries (I used frozen ones, and they are quite nice!)


Step 1: Preheat the oven to 180C, Line your muffin tin with paper or grease them lightly with extra oil, Mix all the wet ingredients (banana, egg, honey, oil, soy milk) in one large bowl; Mix all the dry ingredients (flour and baking powder) in another large bowl

Step 2: Pour the mixed wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, mix lightly so there are no flour, pour int baking tin, push 3-5 blueberries into each muffin; Bake in oven for 15-20min, or until cooked (test with a skewer and it should come out clean when cooked)

Cool in tin for 5min before taking them out on a cake wrack to cool completely. I am not sure how long they last because at our house, it lasted only for 2 days!


I would love to add some chopped walnuts to this recipe, just put it into your dry ingredients bowl. Great snack to take around, just watch it as your little ones munch, because there face may get messy a bit! ENJOY!!

May 24, 2012

No egg, no sugar, no butter Birthday Cake

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

Hi this is KK, Sushi Artist / Healthy Muffin Maker / Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.

20120525-084956.jpgToday is my roster to do the morning tea for playgroup, and since we haven’t had a birthday party for a while, I decided to do a cake!

This is a no egg, no sugar, no butter chocolate sponge cake with no butter, no sugar, no egg, no cream cheese, no icing sugar, no margarine cream!

Even the letters are written with dairy and choc-free icing.


Want to know how it’s made?

Stay tuned! I’ll try to write it when I come back from playgroup 🙂



By the way, as usual, it’s super easy, all made in one bowl!

May 24, 2012

No egg, No butter, No sugar Cookie

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

Hi this is KK, Sushi Artist / Healthy Muffin Maker / Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.


It was Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea today,  and they were serving sweets at my gym too! Very tempting but couldn’t pick up those brownies after spending 40min trying to burn off 400 calories!

I just made a small donation and had a cup of tea at home (^-^)

I wish they served non-sugar sweets too! Don’t you think that would attract more attention, especially at a place where everyone is trying to lose weight?


Oh well, maybe I would make a suggestion next year.


I did come home and did some baking myself.

Yup, the healthy ones 🙂


Technically, this is not a “no-sugar” cookie, because I used some organic chocolate for the chips, but I didn’t add extra sugar in the dough. And there’s no butter. Nice and crispy (I tried one, and had difficulty stopping after the first bite). This is a treat for playgroup tomorrow, so I shall pack it away before it disappears in Yumi’s tummy!


Ingredients (to make 15 cookies)

-100g organic chocolate

-200g Organic plain flour

-1 teaspoon Aluminium free baking powder

-1 pinch salt

-60g Rice bran oil

-30g Organic Maple syrup

-40g Organic Soy milk



Step 1 (well, there’s only one step to this): Put all the ingredients in the food processor and mix until the chocolate is chopped (if you want to be neat, chop the chocolate first until they are fine, and then add rest of the ingredients); drop spoonful of the mixture onto a baking tray and bake on 180C for 12min, or until golden.


No need to rest, no need to worry about mixing too much, all you need is a food processor and a scale! Just one thing to wash 🙂 EASY, and fun to make with kids!

April 29, 2012

Grandma’s Rock Cake

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

Hi, this is KK, Sushi Artist / Healthy Muffin Maker / Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.


I think the passion and love for cooking inside me comes from my grandparents, who used to live in the countryside of Japan near the sea. Every time we visited them for a holiday, Grandpa would take us fishing to catch something, and Grandma would cook the catch of the day in her small kitchen.

She also had this funky gadget you put on a gas stove, and it became an oven! With that “Magic Box”, she would bake us cream puffs and cookies and many other things that a child would only dream about. This rock cake was one of our favorite, and she would bake it and send it in parcels to us when the holiday was over.

I made some arrange to it by cutting out the butter and using dates, but as long as you know the basic recipe, you can play around with it!

My recommendation is to use at least one type of dried fruit, and one type of nuts. Basic combinations are:

Raisins + Walnuts

Apricots + Almonds

Cranberry + Macademia

You can also put in things like sesame, cooked beans(Adzuki beans or red kidney beans are my favorites), or rolled oats. It’s difficult to make a mistake, so use your imagination and enjoy!!


Basic Rock Cake Recipe (makes about 15-20 cookie size cakes)

-220g (or 2cups) Organic wholemeal flour

-1 teaspoon Aluminium free Bakin Powder

-30g (or 2 Tablespoon) Organic raw sugar

-2 Tablespoon shredded coconuts

-3 Dates, chopped

-2 Tablespoon walnuts, chopped

-1 egg

-2 Tablespoon Oil

-4 Tablespoon Organic Soy milk



Step 1 : Mix all the dry ingredients (flour, BP, sugar, coconuts, dates, nuts)  in a large bowl; In a separate bowl mix all the wet ingredients (egg, oil, soy milk)


Step 2 : Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, combine using a spatula. Make a round dome shape cake about Tablespoon size on a cooking tray, bake in pre-heated 180C oven for 12min, or until golden on top.


Soooo easy, and it will last in an airtight container for about 3-4 days. Hope you enjoy making it with your kids!



April 23, 2012

Gluten Free, Vegan Chocolate Muffin

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

Hi this is KK, Sushi Artist / Healthy Muffin Maker / Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.


It’s back to school time, and for our family, playgroup is back again.

Not that it makes our daily life so different, but I do use playgroup as an excuse to bake more often,  and take what I have baked for other kids and mums to eat.


At the moment, I am experimenting on my gluten-free recipes, using rice flour. Here is a new recipe, that looks exactly like a normal chocolate muffin.

 This is regular muffin size, and it is

-No Egg

-No Butter

-No Oil

-No Sugar

and Gluten Free. So, it is suitable for most kids and the best of all, it tastes good! Well, at least it must have been good for my daughter Yumi, because she ate the whole regular size muffin, as well as half of mine (^-^)/ Good to know that somebody enjoys it!


Ingredients (to make 6 regular muffin size)

-100g Rice flour

-50g Glutinous rice flour

-10g Cocoa powder

-2 teaspoon Aluminium free Baking Powder

-2 Tablespoon Maple syrup

-150cc Organic soy milk

-30g Organic sultanas



To make

Step 1: Shift all the dry ingredients (rice flour, glutinous rice flour, cocoa, BP) into a large bowl; add wet ingredients(maple syrup and soy milk), and then the sultanas. Mix lightly until blended.


Step 2: Pour the batter into a silicon cup, put on a steamer and cook for about 12min. Check with a skewer (if it comes clean, its cooked)


Compared to my baked muffins, this is healthier becuase it contains no oil/butter. Good for your diet!

By adding   glutinous rice flour, you get the interesting, soft-chewy texture, that my daughter seems to love. If you don’t have the glutinous rice flour, you can use 1 small mashed banana to substitute it. I will try 100% rice flour muffin next time, and tell you how that turns out. ENJOY!!!






April 16, 2012

Steamed Banana Muffin_No sugar, No butter, No egg, No oil!

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

Hi this is KK, Sushi Artist / Healthy Muffin Maker / Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.

My daughter Yumi loves muffins soooo much, I bake about twice a week to keep up with her appetite. I usually bake mini muffins, so it’s quicker to bake (12min in the oven) and easier for her to eat.

As I was trying to think what I can do with 1kg of flour, I decided to do something different. Instead of baking a muffin, I tried steaming it, like my mum used to do at home. Unlike kitchens in Australia, many Japanese mums do not own an oven. Well, these days we have microwaves that work like an oven, but it’s much smaller than the ones here. In our house, we didn’t even have a microwave until I was 12 or so, fortunately, we had a gas oven, but it was seldom used. So when we wanted a quick filling snack, mum used to make steamed buns! I have a lot of recipes for this, but can’t always find the ingredients in Sydney, so today I will start with the basic.

 So easy to make, the only problem here is you need a steamer, but that can be solved by using a large pot and a bowl plus a plate. You just simply put a bowl upside down in a large pot, pour water around the bowl (about 3/4 of the depth of the bowl) put a large plate on top, put your muffins and cook with the lid on! Better to wrap the lid with a kitchen towel, so you don’t have water dripping on your muffins.

Be careful not to burn your self because steam can be quite hot when you are handling them. Apart from that, this is easy, quick and fun to make with kids.

I used silicon muffin cases for this, you can use ceramic or metal, just remember to grease  it with butter or oil before you pour the batter. I repeat, be careful when handling this because the tin gets quite hot too!!

Ingredients (to make 6 regular size muffins)

-220g Organic wholemeaf flour
-1 medium to large size ripe banana

-1 cup Organic soy milk (or regular milk)
-2 teaspoon Aluminium free baking powder


Step 1: Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and beat until smooth

Step 2 : Pour into muffin cases/tins, place in steamer and cook for 10 to 15 min, Check with a skewer (if it comes clean, its cooked)

I though my muffin was quite healthy, but this is healthier because it has no oil in it. Still, nice and moist thanks to the banana and the steaming method. Hmmmm, maybe I should have this for my snack!

April 6, 2012

Cabbage Scone (with Yeast)

by 田草川(たくさがわ)かおる

Hi this is KK, Sushi Artist / Healthy Muffin Maker / Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.

The first time I made scone was in Year 11, during Hospitality class, and I still remember the feel of “Crumbing” the butter into flour with my fingers. Nowadays, thanks to modern technology called “Food Processor” life is made much easier with less mess to cook a good scone.

This recipe uses yeast instead of baking powder, and you have to rest it in the freezer over night but the slow process gives it a new texture, and since it can be kept in the freezer for up to 2 weeks, you can bake a fresh batch whenever  you want to!

I used “Cabbage” in this recipe, a good way to use it up because when you are only a family of 2.5 (well, my daughter Yumi eats more than half and adult,,,) it’s not easy to use up a whole cabbage.

I hope you find this recipe interesting! Quite different to my usual recipe, since this does require butter. I tried making it with olive oil, but it just didn’t turn out right. If you want to stick to olive oil, just use the same cabbage mixture with my basic healthy muffin recipe, it will turn out just as nice!


Ingredients to make 12 scones

-120g Organic Plain Flour

-120g Hard Flour (Flour for baking bread)

-60g Organic Wholemeal Plain Flour

-3 Tablespoon Organic raw sugar

-1 pinch Salt

-140g Unsalted butter

-1 teaspoon dry yeast

-2 teaspoon water (room temperature)

-100cc milk

-250g cabbage/ olive oil/ salt


Step 1: Chop the cabbage in a food processor, cook in a frying pan over low heat with a little bit of olive oil and salt; cook until the volume becomes 1/3 (this may take more than 30min, so do this when you have the spare time)

Step 2: Cut the butter into 1cm cubes, keep it cold;  In a food processor, mix all the flours add butter cubes and mix well; add sugar and mix well; add yeast dissolved in water and milk, mix well

If  you bake now, you will get a plain scone, but here I add the cooked cabbage!

Step 3: Fold the cabbage into the mixture, spread and fold for 6-8 times; make it 2.5c thick wrap and rest in fridge/freezer over night.

Step 4: (Thaw, if frozen) and cut into 12 pieces, brush with milk and sprinkle some almond flakes as a decoration; Bake in preheated oven at 180 C for 18-20min.

Looks like hard work? Not really, you just need the patience to rest it over night! Enjoy this new texture!

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