Haw Berries & Kumquats

Posts under ‘sweets & desserts’

Tangyuan: White, Black, and Marbled 黑白汤圆


Yuanxiao and tangyuan – glutinous rice balls stuffed with a range of fillings – are a must for the Lantern Festival (Yuanxiao Jie 元宵节) on the 15th of the first lunar month, or the first full moon of the new year. But since my family never gets tired of anything involving glutinous rice, we’ve already [...]

Black sesame yogurt cake 黑芝麻酸奶蛋糕


Recently we’ve started ordering organic yogurt from Green Yard Organic Dairy, based in Yanqing County. Though it’s not as thick and creamy as unsweetened Herun Yogurt ( 和润酸奶), I’ve come to prefer Green Yard because it’s local, organic, and comes in a recyclable  paper carton. I loved Herun, which is also local, but it’s sold [...]

Pumpkin mochi balls with black sesame and red bean paste

pumpkin mochi with red bean paste and black sesame filling

When the ginkgo trees turn golden, when the flower seller has seas of long-tendriled chrysanthemums and the vegetable seller has pumpkins of all shapes and sizes, then we know that fall has arrived. Beijing’s autumn is its most beautiful season, but also its most fleeting. Thinking of autumnal treats back home, Thanksgiving feasts and pumpkin [...]

Moving Day Cookies (Ginger-Nut-Butter-Apricot-Oat Snaps!)

Ginger cookies with apricot, almond butter, oats, and spelt

I hate moving. Over my four years in Beijing, I’ve moved four times. The first time I had a few suitcases and moved across the length of the city. The other three times I’ve moved a considerably smaller distance with considerably more stuff. There’s nothing worse than moving the dregs of a flour sack, or [...]

Tomorrow, when the apricots come


Hawberries & Kumquats is overwhelmed with moving house and will be taking a short break. (The complexity of apartment hunting in Beijing could be an entire blog subject.) In the meantime, here are a few tidbits to mull over, and I’ll be back in a week or two.

Pumpkin brioche red bean buns 南瓜布里欧修豆沙包

pumpkin brioche red bean bun - interior

I am quite ready to declare this to be the best brioche dough in the world. As cinnamon rolls, they’re divine. As a tart base, it’s pillowy and sweetly accommodating. In simple brioche form, the essence of the dough shines through: The crumb is light, airy, and moist; fragrantly rich but not at all heavy. And with red bean paste, it elevates the humble little red bean bun to new heights of deliciousness.

Meyer lemon almond custard

lemon custard

I’ve been slowly going through all the lemon recipes I can think of: tarts, lemon curd, preserved lemons, lemon millet pistachio tea cakes, and not once have my China-grown Meyers disappointed, despite the assertions of a certain somebody that they’re oranges. My latest favorite are these delicate, airy custards, so creamy that you wouldn’t guess they’re dairy-free and gluten-free (but not vegan).

Kumquat tart

kumquat slice and tart

I’ve grown up eating kumquats all my life, but it hadn’t ever occurred to me to do anything with them. They were usually associated with Chinese new year, when my grandparents sometimes had a little kumquat tree, its branches laden with golden fruit. But the success of the hawberry-kumquat pie, as well as a lemon tart that used not one but three whole lemons, led me to reconsider, and so was born this kumquat tart.

Haw berry kumquat pie 山楂金橘派

hawberry & kumquat pie

Filled with haw berry and kumquat jam, this pie is tart, sweet, and citrus-y, matching wonderfully well with a fragrant almond crust. As haw berries are so very representative of Beijing, I’ve decided to call this a hawberry Beijing pie.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...