Yutaka – Japanese Valentines meal and truffles

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I love to try new foods and experiment with flavours, so when I received a hamper from Yutaka containing lots of lovely Yutaka items, I was excited to get my cooking hat on!  For those of you who are reading and do not know, Yutaka is a Japanese food brand created by the chef Ching He Huang.  The Yutaka range of authentic Japanese food products was introduced to the UK in 1995, and includes many different types of ingredients such as sushi kits, rice, variety of noodles, marinades and pastes to name a few.  You can find a range of Yutaka products here.

I was asked to review their products and cook my very own Japanese meal as well as create some manly truffles.  It is a Japanese tradition for women to give men chocolate on Valentines Day – and not just partners receive chocolate – it can be family members, friends or work colleagues.  Yutaka want to open up this tradition in the UK and showcase some of their own truffle recipes for us to try.

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Yutaka Japanese products

Firstly, I used the necessary ingredients to make a wholesome Japanese meal that I knew both myself and my husband would enjoy.  I used the Soybean noodles and marinated some chicken thighs in the Yakisoba sauce.  I used the Tamari Soy sauce to season the noodles and topped off the chicken with the white roasted sesame seeds.

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Chef Shel

We found the noodles to be so full of flavour and the Yakisoba sauce rich and sweet giving the chicken a sticky coating which went so well with the noodles.  The soy was light and not to heavy and the toasted sesame seeds was a nice added element. The soybean noodles are suitable for vegetarians as well as gluten-free and are high in fibre and protein.  These were our favourite!  Using these ingredients was super easy and a great combination of flavours.  I love asian food and had yet to try cooking Japanese at home so this was a real treat!

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Tangy Yakisoba Chicken with Soybean Noodles

I then attempted the Japanese chocolate truffles.  I have never made truffles in my life so did feel a little daunted by this task!  But I was pleasantly surprised with how I enjoyed doing it and found it quite easy with the recipe Yutaka provided.

I was given 250g dark chocolate, Yuzu Ponzu, sushi ginger, shaoxing rice wine, panko breadcrumbs, organic miso paste and Yukata Japanese curry block.

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Yutaka ingredients to make Japanese truffles

I made four different flavours using the ingredients provided all bar the shaoxing rice wine flavour as I had run out of chocolate.

-Miso Caramel – think salted caramel with a twist
-Cinnamon Curry – a spicy truffle with crunchy, toasted panko
-Yuzu Soy – yuzu and soy give this a sweet and salty appeal
-Shaoxing Wine – a boozy hit
-Sushi Ginger – chocolate & ginger with the surprising tang of pickle

Truffle Recipe

  • 200g of good quality dark chocolate
  • 60ml of double cream
  • 80g of unsalted butter
  • truffle cases (I didn’t use and just placed truffles on a wooden board

Truffle method

In a double saucepan (or a Pyrex bowl in a saucepan), place chocolate, butter and cream. Heat through slowly until smooth whilst whisking. Remove from heat and divide into 5 equal portions, adding the various flavourings to each individual portion as below. Once flavoured, place in the fridge to set – overnight if possible.

Remove the various truffle mixes from the fridge and, with a teaspoon, scoop out a goodly amount. Roll into a ball and place on a plate (remembering to keep the various flavours separate) and continue until all the mixture has been used.

Filling and coating ingredients

Miso caramel sauce filling

75g sugar
25ml water
50ml double cream
1 tbsp Yutaka Miso
100g milk chocolate – gently melted for coating
Pink salt crystals for sprinkling on the top

Miso caramel flavouring method

Put sugar and water in a heavy bottomed saucepan, stir and leave on a medium heat, stirring occasionally, until caramel in colour. Carefully add double cream (it will hiss a little) and whisk whilst off the heat, add miso paste and whisk thoroughly until smooth. Add 2 tbsp of miso caramel sauce to the remaining truffle mixture. The remainder of the sauce saved and used over ice cream for a delicious dessert.

Cinnamon curry flavour

1 tsp of Yutaka Japanese Curry block mixed with hot water
50g of Yutaka Panko Breadcrumbs mixed with 3 teaspoons of sugar & 2 teaspoon of cinnamon toasted in oven until golden brown

Yuzu Ponzu

1.5 tsp Yuzu Ponzu
Flaked milk chocolate for coating

Yutaka Shoaling rice wine flavouring

2 tbsp Yutaka Shaoxing rice wine warmed
Chocolate vermicelli for coating

Yutaka Pickled sushi ginger flavouring

2 tbsp chopped Yutaka sushi ginger
Cocoa for coating

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Sushi Ginger

Once all flavours have been added and you’ve cooled in the fridge, remove the various truffle mixes from the fridge and, with a teaspoon, scoop out a goodly amount. Roll into a ball and place on a plate (remembering to keep the various flavours separate) and continue until all the mixture has been used.

Coating the Truffles

Roll the ginger truffles in cocoa and place in truffle cases. Roll the Yuzu Ponzu in flaked milk chocolate, the katsu in the toasted panko and the rice wine truffles in vermicelli and return to fridge.

For the Miso truffles, using a double boiler (or Pyrex bowl in a saucepan) melt the milk chocolate over a low heat and, when removed from the heat & cooled slightly, spoon over miso truffles until coated. You can use a cocktail stick pushed carefully into a truffle to help you turn and coat with the chocolate. This needs patience! Leave them to set on a plate. Sprinkle a couple of pink salt crystals on the top.

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Homemade Japanease truffles

I found these quite easy to make but struggled with the caramel sauce  – it just wouldn’t turn into a caramel and was turning more into a sugar paste.  After three attempts I eventually got there and it was really tasty!  My husband really enjoyed most flavours aside from the ginger but his favourite was the curry chocolate!  Mine was the Yuzu Ponzu as I could get the citrus flavour through the chocolate which was really tasty!

So if you’re looking to cook for Valentines day or try something different and give these homemade chocolates a try, then visit Yutaka’s website here for the ingredients to make your valentine’s day Japanese themed and super special.  Or even if you just fancy getting creative in the kitchen at any time!

Yutaka can be found in most supermarket stores such as Tesco, Asda and Sainsburys.  Thank you so much to Yutaka for my lovely Japanese food products to try and to review.  These are all my own opinions and views on the Yutaka brand.

One Messy Mama
Reflectionsfromme
Winnettes
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20 Comments

  1. February 12, 2018 / 1:26 pm

    Ooh so interesting learning about this! Looks v tasty too #anythinggoes

  2. Jenni - Odd Socks and Lollipops
    February 12, 2018 / 2:24 pm

    Oh wow this all looks fab, I would never think to cook a Japanese inspired meal at home, I am clearly missing out!

  3. Matt O’Connor
    February 12, 2018 / 2:44 pm

    I can say they were really tasty we will be cooking more Japanese in the future!!

  4. February 12, 2018 / 10:28 pm

    Ooh nice!! They look delicious and something we would enjoy making together too! Yum!

  5. February 13, 2018 / 9:55 am

    These look fab and those truffles look so so yummy!

  6. February 13, 2018 / 12:15 pm

    These look absolutely amazing – with the caramel I think it’s always such a tricky one to get the right consistency, they still look so yummy!

  7. February 13, 2018 / 1:11 pm

    Your post made me realise I know nothing about Japanese style food and that needs to change. Truffles are perfect for Valentines too #TriumphantTales

  8. February 13, 2018 / 5:38 pm

    Ooh these look so delicious! I love trying different types of food too. These would be perfect for Valentines!

  9. Morgan Prince
    February 13, 2018 / 7:33 pm

    Oh this is really interesting. I’ve never tried cooking Japanese food at home but this is certainly encouraging me to give it a try. 😉
    #mg

  10. February 13, 2018 / 9:44 pm

    Love the truffle flavours! I am a huge fan of Japanese food and Yutaka make some great products. And in case you were worried that it’s anbit sexist that only men get chocolate on Valentines … there is a separate festival on March 14th called white day that women get showered with chocolate gifts!

    • February 13, 2018 / 10:34 pm

      Ah really?! That’s fab there’s another celebration!

  11. mackenzieglanville
    February 14, 2018 / 12:33 am

    YUM, anything chocolate and I am happy, dark is my favourite. I love truffles, we love to go to Koko black and buy their truffles they are divine. So happy you could join in with the #mg link ip party and Happy Valentines day

  12. February 15, 2018 / 8:31 pm

    Those truffles look heavenly! Can I put an order in? Thanks for sharing with #TriumphantTales, hope to see you again next week.

  13. Musings of a tired mummy...zzz...
    February 15, 2018 / 10:26 pm

    I don’t think I have ever tried Japanese cuisine. The truffles look great. I am wheat free so it is fab to see there are gluten free ingredients available. Thanks for linking up with #globalblogging

  14. February 18, 2018 / 7:17 pm

    These sound delicious and really different! I love the tradition of women giving men chocolates, who doesn’t love chocolate? I’m with you on the caramel though, I really struggle with this too! Thanks for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

  15. February 21, 2018 / 10:31 am

    Japanese food is our favourite! I use the Yutaka ingredients quite a lot as find them such good quallity. Those truffles look lovely. Thank you for joining #ThursdayTeam

    • February 21, 2018 / 2:45 pm

      Such great quality! They tasted yummy!

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