I’ve been a little slow at getting into the stride of 2013 but I hope that readers have all had a good start to the New Year. Before getting to the main part of the post; I’m looking forward to making some changes to Imagination is spicy this year and I’ll be giving a proper update soon on what’s coming up.
Onto lucky cats and lucky fish!
One of the lovely Christmas gifts I received, from a dear friend in Japan, is a silicon mould from Muji. If you’ve never heard of Muji before they make a lot of amazing home products with simple and effective design ethos and at reasonable prices. Unfortunately, this particular silicon tray with the shapes of maneki-neko (the lucky beckoning cat) and lucky carp aren’t available through the European website, only the Japanese one.
It comes with a simple recipe book, which I took as good starting place to try out the mould. As I’m unable to read Japanese characters I asked my friend to translate a recipe for me. These turned out to be moist, delicious savoury cakes derived from the traditional French cake olive salé.
As I’ve been unable to find an English language version online, I decided to share this recipe based on my friend’s translation. Olive salé recipes are available on many French language cooking sites but are generally for a larger, traditional loaf-shaped cake. The quantities below make ten bite-sized cakes which makes them ideal for a snack or canapés.
Cake olive salé. Original recipe by Muji.
If you don’t have a silicon mould with deep shapes then you can try doubling the below quantities and using a mini-muffin tray instead.
60g/2½ oz. Plain white flour
One flat teaspoon of baking powder
One large egg
30ml/⅛ of a cup Milk
20ml/ just under ⅛ cup of Olive oil
20g/¾ oz. de-stoned green olives, finely chopped
30g/1½oz. Parmesan, grated
Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C/375 degrees F.
Sieve together the plain flour and baking powder into a mixing bowl. Add the large egg, milk and olive oil to the flour and whisk together until you have a smooth batter. Add the finely chopped olives and grated Parmesan and fold them into the batter with a silicon or wooden spatula. When mixed thoroughly; spoon the mixture into the silicon moulds or mini-muffin tray. If you’re using a muffin tray, do grease it first with a little olive oil.
Put your silicon or muffin tray in the oven for thirteen minutes, or until you can see the mixture has risen and is turning golden at the edges. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. These are best eaten warm, so serve immediately when they are cool enough to handle.
Alternative ingredients can be other grated hard cheeses, chopped herbs, finely chopped ham or bacon, sun-dried tomatoes and chopped peppers. I’ve made some with bacon, herbs and cheddar cheese and they were delicious!