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Sweet Oriental Treats To Try On National Dessert Day

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October 14th, 2017 is National Dessert Day! A day for us to celebrate the wide array of desserts found all across the globe, from Victoria sponges and sherry trifles to Japanese mochi and dorayaki. In honour of this special day, we’re going to take a look into a few of our favourite oriental puddings! How will you celebrate National Dessert Day?

Mochi

A very traditional Japanese treat is mochi. These are sweet rice cakes made from glutinous short-grain rice, which is pounded into a paste to form the soft shell of the mocha. They are typically ball-like in shape and come in a wide range of flavours including chocolate, red bean, matcha, milk along with many other variations. These are enjoyed as snacks and desserts all year around; however, they become of particular importance during the New Year. You can purchase Japanese mochi online, in oriental supermarkets (such as ours) or even have a go at making them yourself at home!

Japanese Cheesecake

This cheesecake is quite unlike any other type, largely because instead of being a dense and indulgent texture, this is incredibly light and fluffy. It’s lower calorie count and less sweet taste meant that it was the perfect alternative to fit in with the lifestyle of Asian cultures and significantly increased in popularity in 2011, when a company called ‘Uncle Tetsu’ began opening shops selling an infamous recipe of this Japanese cheesecake which has been around since 1948. Another defining factor of this cheesecake is that it has no base but stands alone as the baked cheesecake mixture. There are plenty of recipes for this unique dessert online, so why not try making one yourself this weekend?

Dorayaki

These small, gong-shaped puddings are similar to thick American pancakes but on a smaller scale. Two layers of the light, spongy cake are simply sandwiched together with a traditional sweet red bean paste. There are other variations of this in which custard as a filling is preferred; these are particularly popular with children as an enjoyable afternoon snack or after dinner treat! Although simple, they are truly delicious and offer a lighter option than a British cake or snack.

Mooncakes

Chinese mooncakes are traditionally enjoyed during the Mid-Autumn Festival to celebrate the lunar cycle and the moon. The delicacy is eaten amongst friends and families during this celebration along with tea and is incredibly rich and delicious. Made up of a pastry-like crust containing salted duck eggs and a centre of traditional red bean or lotus seed paste, the cakes are around 10cm in diameter and are cut into sections to be eaten. There is even a legend that states that the mooncake was the original fortune cookie, whereby bakers would write fortunes and place them within the cake to be enjoyed by all throughout the Mid-autumn festival!

Fried Bananas

Fried bananas are typically a street food dish found in many Asian countries including China, Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia. These are sweet and sticky and can be paired with many different accompaniments including coconut milk and ice cream. The recipes for this can vary regionally, for example, in Indonesia; they are known as Pisang Goreng and are dipped in batter before being deep-fried. Other variations include the banana (or plantain) being dipped in sugar before or after being deep-fried in replacement of the batter. This dish is commonly enjoyed in the morning or early afternoon.

Which of these sweet treats would you most like to try? We’d love to hear from you via our social media channels!

Image credit: Debbie Tingzon

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