This was a product I’d never heard of before but it’s been a great discovery. I introduced it in my review of Clearspring products but if you missed that post or are new to the blog here’s a little intro, in case you’re unfamiliar with it.
Amazake is a Japanese ingredient made from just 3 ingredients- whole grains, water and salt. The traditional Japanese process uses a koji culture to convert the carbohydrates in the grains into simple sugars and magically transform them into these wonderfully thick and creamy dessert.
Traditionally it’s turned into a hot drink combining approx 1/4C with 3/4C hot water. I prefer to make a more creamy, comforting drink simply adding a spoonful into a mug of warm almond milk. I happen to love it straight out of the jar too. You can also blend in fruits, cocoa, extracts and make puddings or smoothies in all kinds of flavours and Clearpring have a whole host of other recipes using amazake on their site. I decided it would be great to use as a sweetener in baked goods and love slightly sweet muffins for breakfast so the decision was made!
I had picked up even more strawberries than I could eat fresh a few weeks ago and frozen them, a very good decision it turned out as strawberry season’s over here now but I’ve already been missing them. I love the flavour of almonds with fruit so added ground almonds to the mix for flavour and moisture, and a little almond extract to amp up the taste.
Aren’t they pretty?! A wonderfully soft, tender crumb, a puffy top and little jammy bites of sweetness. Just how I like them.
Strawberry-Almond Amazake Muffins:
These are only mildly sweet so perfect for breakfast in my eyes. If you do like your muffins sweet then replace 2-3T of the almond milk with liquid sweetener i.e. agave nectar, brown rice or maple syrup. You can also just serve drizzled with a little agave instead.
1C Light spelt flour
1/2C Ground almonds (These might have a different name outside the UK but here are blanched, finely ground almonds)
2t Baking powder
3 1/2T Oil
I 380g/13.5oz Jar Amazake
1/4C Almond milk
1/2t Almond extract
1/2t Vanilla extract
1C Chopped strawberries + 1T Flour
8 Blanched almonds (optional)
Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Line a muffin tray with 8 paper cases.
Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl whisk together amazake, oil, almond milk and extracts. Add wet to dry and stir to combine. Don’t over-mix or you’ll end up with tough muffins. Toss strawberries with 1T flour to prevent them from sinking to the bottom of the muffins and gently fold them into the mixture.
Divide mixture evenly between the paper cases and top with an almond if you like.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, until lightly brown and a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.
Hannah of Bittersweet even made her own amazake! If you can’t find amazake in grocery stores near you or are just feeling ambitious in the kitchen, why not give it a go?
Is amazake new to you? If not tell me how you like to use it!
Hope everyone’s enjoying the start of MoFo! So happy to be participating this year. I’ll be back with the letter B tomorrow!