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Coconut, Red bean and Matcha Agar Agar. Let's talk healthy (or heathier) today.

Coconut, Red bean and Matcha Agar Agar

So you've just had dinner...and it is now time of the night when you scour the kitchen for desserts. So what do you find? Ice-cream, chocolate (with sea-salt!) , or cakes? No? Ever since my recent over-indulgenceinJapan, I've been thinking a lot about low fat desserts. Then I magically found agar agar (kanten in Japanese) in my pantry.

You know what's so lovely about this stuff? It is made of approximately 80% fibre and as you digest, it increases in volume in your stomach by absorbing the water...which means, you'll be fuller quicker than ever! Oh and you know what else I love about it? Many sites I have came across boast that agar agar is completely fat-free, has 0 calories and 0 sugar and carbs. I have tested with one of my favourite food combinations... Matcha and red beans with 2 different versions. Oy, isn't variety the spice of life? This is probably the easiest dessert recipe you'll ever find. Coconut layer. Japanese style Tofu glutinous rice balls + Packing. I am attempting to pack up my life into 20kg this week.

Japanese style Tofu glutinous rice balls + Packing

The last time I packed like this, it was 5 years ago when I had to move to Illinois to study. I learnt back then, that living on 20kg for a year is doable ;) This time, I am making the transition into the next chapter of my career in a different industry...and a different city - Melbourne! Lots of changes for sure. Definitely exciting and very scary. So it's a jam-packed week for me this week as I am trying to do a gazillion last-minute things and catch up with my Sydney friends. I normally don't make rice balls but the only reason I made these was because the recipe uses tofu!

I flavoured a third of the dough into green-tea (matcha) and also dipped the rice balls in 3 different 'dressings' - freshly grinded black sesame, soy bean powder (this stuff is amazing) and lastly the left-over sweetened red bean from the fridge. This recipe is inspired by Masa, a Japanese foodblogger living in Taiwan. Oh, and I hope you smile today too :) 1. Black Sesame Brownies. Obsession: Black sesame.

Black Sesame Brownies

Confession #1: Not a big fan of chocolate (except dark bitter ones). Confession #2: Craves comfort food on cooler days. Please come back soon summer. Confession #3: Get emotional when watching home renovation T.V shows as if I'm the owners of the house. I'm just kidding...hmmm really. Conclusion: Black sesame brownie seems like a pretty swell idea. Not convinced? Here is why I like black sesame... - Keeps my hair black and shiny (although I may be too young to be graying) - Are full of healthy goodness - calcium and magnesium amongst others. - Will likely to never go out of fashion (little black dress, black cats, black Fridays) - Tastes good...have you tried black sesame ice-cream? about black sesame paste? You can get these thick puree of roasted black sesame seed in a jar from good Asian/Japanese stores (I bought mine on my last trip to Japan - it seems smoother).

Check out the comparisons...are you a crunchy or smooth type of person? Sweet Green Mung Bean Soup (Hong Kong Dessert) This recipe has been posted long ago on my Chinese food blog.

Sweet Green Mung Bean Soup (Hong Kong Dessert)

Here comes the English version for those who love the traditional Hong Kong sweet soup. This sweet green mung bean soup is great for summer, served either in warm or cold. There is one special ingredient, stink grass listed in this recipe. Hope you won’t be scared off by its name, 臭草 (literally means “stink grass” in Chinese). I don’t quite know how and why this little, humble herb got this unpleasing name.

Those two tinny sprigs were gift from my friend who grows them in her backyard. Sweet Green Mung Bean Soup (Printable recipe) By Christine's Recipes Prep time: 60 mins Cook time: 90 mins Yield:4 to 6 serves Ingredients:200 gm green mung beans 2 sprigs rue/stink grass (臭草) 8 pieces seaweed 50 gm rice 2 liters water rock sugar, to taste Method:Rinse the beans and soak for about 1 hour. Notes:You might like to skip the rice, the texture will become thinner.The dried sea weed will increased 10 times in size.