Kuromame (black soybeans) Pound Cake, Matcha (green tea) version
OK, here's another one. Hey, those who have been in Japan for a couple of years -- Have you noticed that more and more young Japanese moms are baking pound cakes with leopard spots like this at this time of the year? It is to use up the leftover kuromame (simmered black soybeans),
one of the staples of osechi (Japanese traditional New Year's feast). It's a rather recent trend, and I had been wanting to give it a try since I read about it in 2006, IIRC.
It's so much fun to slice this cake to see the different patterns the beans make :)
The original recipe (Japanese) called for soybean powder, which I didn't have any, so I replaced it with almond powder and added matcha. It worked alright (though not perfect. I do think soybean powder is the key ingredient). IMHO, this cake tastes far better on the next day. When I tasted it fresh from the oven while it was still warm, I felt the slightest hint of dashi flavor in the beans and I wasn't too crazy about that.
Kuromame with Yogurt
Another re-use idea for leftover simmered black soybeans. Oh, please don't say "yuck!" The idea has become popular among young Japanese women in the past couple of years and they say it's a good food for weight watchers. I'm not kidding! This tastes better than it looks. Honestly.
I must say that I like this combination but only when a lot of beans AND plenty of syrup are added to yogurt.
You know, these are just holiday leftover ideas, after all... What's important about them is being able to feel, "I'm not wasting food." Right? ;) ;)