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Before I continue my part II (continuation from this) post on tea inspired cocktails, I wanted to write about two tea inspired desserts/treats I had yesterday.  Both desserts made use of citrus to go with tea flavors, one was inspired, the other… not quite there.

Takahachi Bakery

This is the Matcha roll cake with yuzu and red bean cream.  This is INSPIRED.  For those of us who are into Asian desserts, the combination of matcha (green tea) and red bean has been done time and time again.  What makes this special is the addition of yuzu.  For those not familiar with yuzu, it is an Asian citrus fruit with the tart flavor of a grapefuit, but with far more complexity and nuance – for more information, here is the wikipedia link.  The bright citrus brings a lightness to this treat that makes you just want to eat more and more of it.  The roll cake itself is very light and fluffy with good cake texture and a moist crumb.  The cream is light and not overwhelmingly sweet.  The yuzu balances the slight bitterness of the matcha and the sweetness of the red bean.

This is the perfect afternoon snack with a cup of tea.  Run, don’t walk, to Takahachi Bakery located on 25 Murray Street in Tribeca.

Family Recipe

This is the Roasted tea panna cotta with kabosu jello.  Kabosu is another Asian citrus, very closely related to yuzu – for more information.  I was underwhelmed by this dessert.  Let’s start with the good first.  The panna cotta was made perfectly – smooth, light, not too sweet, the flavor of the roasted tea was very mild.  The not-so-good… The kabosu jello was way too tart and too sharp.  I don’t think it went very well with this dessert.  There was also a sliver of dark chocolate included in this dessert, I question the value this piece of chocolate added to the whole package.  I think it would’ve worked better with the clean taste of fresh berries and a dollop of yuzu scented whipped cream.

Family Recipe is a very relaxed place to have a satisfying dinner, but this dessert can certainly be improved upon.

Takahachi Bakery – 25 Murray Street (near Church Street)

Family Recipe – 231 Eldridge St (between Stanton St & Houston St)