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One of my favorite ways to relax lately is to cook.

My mother I am sure is somewhat shocked by all of this recent foray into the culinary world as I had little to no interest in cooking when growing up.  Now however I seem to be filled with drive to try new things.

Today I conquered several recipes I’ve been wanting to give a go to and even made one up.  *Note – I’ve included the recipes for the things I made today in this post as they all came out great and you should all try them because they’re easy. 🙂

It started with Tortillas.  Tortillas are pretty expensive here in Tokyo and generally I always find that they don’t taste anything like the ones from the Mexican restaurant back home. So I have decided to make my own.

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That’s how they turned out! I found a recipe online via pinterest (here) and tweaked it as I didn’t want to use butter/lard thus I think they’re lower fat.  My recipe is below:

Tortillas

2 cups flour

1/2 tsp salt

1tbsp oil (I used olive)

3/4 cup of warm water

Mix flour and salt – in a separate cup mix the oil with your water and gradually add it to the flour. Mix until you get a nice dough that’s not too dry but not sticky either.  Let the ball of dough sit for 30 minutes or so in the bowl.  Then divide into 8 segments (or more if you want smaller ones) and roll out with a rolling pin  (or wine bottle like me who doesn’t have a rolling pin).  Then put them in a pre-headed skillet (medium-low heat) for about 20 seconds on each side and put them on a towel while they cool.  Eat! 🙂

The next thing I made was hummus.  I’m a bit picky about my hummus.  There was a great restaurant in Vancouver I used to go to with my friends… The Naam I think it was called and they had fantastic hummus.  I’ve never been able to fully re-create it but I think my version is pretty good too.

Hummus

1 can of chickpeas – drained

2 tbsp of Olive Oil

1 tbsp minced garlic

1 1/2 tsp of cumin

1/2 tsp lemon juice

1/4 cup of water

Toss everything in a blender or food processer and whir away until smooth! 🙂 Put on fresh tortilla.

Next came ricotta.  Another pinterest find, this is amazing and it does work and makes yummy ricotta.  The draining proces is a bit of a mess – or it was for me anyway but it made some seriously yummy stuff.

Ricotta

1 cup milk

1 tbsp lemon juice

1/4 tsp salt

Mix everything in a microwave safe bowl and microwave on high for about 2 minutes.  Stir gently and check to see if the milk is separating, if not fully separated go for another 30 seconds and check again.  Repeat until it is all clearly separated   Spoon out curds/ricotta onto paper towels to drain.  Coffee filters also work well for this part.  See the link to the original recipe for more info on making ricotta and other amazing things.

So I made all of the above then it was lunch time – SO I used my fresh tortillas, put some homemade hummus and ricotta on them, added some chicken and a bunch of veggies and voila! Lunch!  (the dish on the side is a broccoli and cauliflower gratin)

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What is lunch on the weekend without a treat.  I’ve gotten on the single serving cake bandwagon recently and wanted to try making up my own.  It turned out pretty good – if not really ugly!  Sadly I don’t have any photos as we ate them too quickly.  But we’re going to call this recipe Marshmallow Moon Cake.  I’ll explain why at the end.

Marshmallow Moon Cake (makes 2 small ramikins or 1 large mug)

1 egg

3 tbsp white sugar

1 tbsp butter – melted

1/3 cup flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp vanilla

small handfull of mini marshmallows.

Mix together all ingredients except for marshmallows.  When you have a smooth batter gently fold in marshmallows.  Put in the microwave for about 2 minutes.

So why do I call this moon cake?  Well, when you take it out the marshmallows will have disappeared/blown up.  Not coating your microwave or anything but somehow they disappear leaving mini marshmallow shaped holes throughout your cake all the way to the bottom.  It’s nice cake though.

ps. it annoys me that Marshmallows is spelled Marshmallow and not Marshmellow as the later seems to be more fun, more accurate and just better all around.

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