Wednesday, April 13, 2011

It's spring: Cherry Blossoms!

Really I think I just wanted to do this post because I seem to have an attraction to cherry blossoms.  As much as I love the sunny weather out here in California, I admit that I feel as if we are missing out on experiencing "the seasons" like they do in other parts of the world.  I did see some Cherry blossom trees in bloom though the other day and it made me happy.  It reminded me of around this time last year when Cy and I were in Japan and had the chance to experience "Spring" in full - mainly in the form of Cherry blossoms.  Seeing and smelling all the beautiful pink blooms, tasting all the amazing cherry blossom flavored foods.  Not always so diabetic friendly, but still fun to look at.

Whenever I go to Japan or when one of my friends go to Japan, I usually ask them to bring me back some baking ingredients.  Everything from freeze dried purple potato flakes to cherry blossom extract.  And more often than not I end up hoarding and "saving" them for ''special'' occasions...meaning they end up sitting in the cupboard for a very very long time...

In anycase, in honor of springtime, I thought I'd pull out my salted cherry blossoms and actually try to bake something with them.  My version of cherry blossom shortbread -  the flowery saltiness of the cherry blossoms perfectly complimented the sweet shortbread.

When cooking for a diabetic, there's a lot of thought that goes into choosing certain ingredients over others.  For example, there's a lot of debate over various sugar alternatives and how they affect your blood glucose level and how its metabolized in the of these days,  I would love to research and do an in depth post on it for my own knowledge. For now, I am going with splenda.

If you feel like baking these, they do carry salted cherry blossoms at Japanese grocery stores if you're lucky enough to have one nearby, or you can always find them online.  

OR I'm always a fan of altering recipes - If you're able to come up with any alternatives to Salted Cherry Blossoms let me know!

Cherry Blossom Shortbread Recipe:

Brown Rice Flour  120g (You can replace this with regular flour if you'd like)
Almond Flour 30g
Unsalted Butter  100g
Splenda less than 1/2cup (or you can use about 80g of sugar)
Egg 1large
Salted Cherry Blossoms (Soaked in water and drained)

Preheat oven to 325F 
1. Sift together the flour and almond flour.
2. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in the egg.
3. Mix in the flour mixture until well incorporated.
4. Let the dough rest in the fridge for about an hour.
5. Roll out into a log (mine is about 2in in diameter) and put back into the fridge for another 30min.
6. Slice into small rounds onto parchment and press individual flower blossoms into each round.
7. Bake for about 15-20min and cool.

1 comment:

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