Sunday Prune Yeast Pancake

Sunday pancakes! I love having a special breakfast on the weekend.

These pancakes are made with my prune yeast. I got this recipe from an awesome Japanese blog called “Bochun Cafe”.

Her baking is amazing and looks sooooo good I just had to try her recipe.

This recipe is fantastic and really easy. You just prepare the pancake mixture the night before (in no time) and let it rise overnight. The next morning, the mixture is ready to go – easy!

I say that but actually, these are my second attempt. The first try was a failure – I didn’t let it ferment enough so I ended up with a very thick and heavy pancake, not fluffy at all…

The worst thing about it was that these were the special fathers day pancakes the girls wanted to make for a surprise breakfast in bed… Whoops…

Anyway, the second time was a big success. They were really fluffy, not as light as with baking powder but these had a stringy bread-like bite and flavour. I think these are fantastic as a savoury dish. (They’re great as sweet pancakes as well)

I had them with bacon and salad. (and maple syrup with butter) Next time I want to try them with pecan nuts and blue cheese and maple syrup. Yummm.

These will be our regular sunday pancakes for a while, for sure!



Wild Yeast Pancake

100g of High grade/ Strong Flour
100g of Standard / All purpose Flour
20g of Sugar
3g of Salt
1 Egg ( L size)
150g of Soy milk (or milk)
50g of Water
1 tbsp of Olive oil
40g of Prune Yeast Starter (leaven)

Mix the flour, sugar and salt with a whisk, in a large bowl. In another bowl, mix well the prune starter and the water. Add the soy milk and the oil to the starter and water when they are well mixed.

Add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture and mix well until you get a nice, smooth batter. Cover the bowl and let it rise in a warm place overnight. The mixture should rise a little bit (I marked the volume of contents by sticking a piece of paper.) and become wobbly, like a thick jelly.

If you are not sure it is ready, try cooking one. If it is not ready (you get a dense and heavy pancake) put the bowl in hot water (not too hot) and leave it to rise for 30 min.


Fig Tornado

This is my version of a “Fig Tornado”.
The fig tornado are rye, fig and walnuts sticks from a fantastic bakery called “La Main qui Pense” in Japan, near where I used to live.
I loved them soooooo much, so I had to try to make them!

This is my first attempt at a fig tornado and it turned out to be pretty good! Quite close to how I remember them.
I love the smell of rye and the crunchiness of dry figs and walnuts!! They were so good when I had them, still warm, straight out of the oven. Yummmm

I could put a bit more dry figs and chop them up a bit smaller to make it easier to shape the sticks. I should also spend a bit more time shaping them to achieve a better look?
Anyway, it is a really good, healthy snack. My mesdemoiselles loved them too.  🙂

I will definitely be making this again and again.



100g of High grade/Strong flour

75g of whole meal flour (stone ground)

75g of Rye flour

100g of Prune starter   <40%>  (or 1/4 tsp of Instant dry yeast)

5 g of Honey <2%>

4g of Salt  <1.6%>

8g of Butter <3.2%>

100g of Walnuts , roasted, chop finely

100g of  Dry fig , chop finely

Organic prune yeast

This is my starter (leaven) made from organic prune yeast.

I wanted to make it from raisins as it is meant to be easier but I couldn’t find raisins without oil-coating. I checked a number of shops and asked around a couple of organic shops… but no luck. So I used prunes instead.

When you use prunes (or any other dried fruit), make sure it doesn’t contain preservative nor oil. Check the ingredients at the back of the package. If they’re oil-coated, it’s usually indicated as  “vegetable oil” or “sunflower oil”.

Yeast extract 

First I make prune yeast extract by adding 225g of water and 75g of prunes (without oil coating and preservative) [water 3: prunes 1] * in a sterilized glass jar.  * I used to put [prunes 3 : water1] on this post by mistake. I apologise to those of you who tried my method.

I leave it in a warm place for 3 to 10 days (it depends on ambient temperature), shaking it a little and opening the lid every morning. (I check the smell as well.)After a few days you will notice the smell changes and gas coming out like when you open a beer bottle. It’s nearly there!

When it’s ready (the yeast has developed) you will see all of your prunes (or raisins) float in the water with tiny bubbles on top. It should smell a little like a sweet wine.
Once I reach this stage I leave my jar for one more day at room temperature to make sure it’s working then keep it in refrigerator.


Once you have your yeast extract you can make your starter. There are a few methods to do this but here is an easy one.
You will need

  • 2x 50g of yeast extract
  • 50g of whole meal flour
  • 2x 50g of high grade (strong) white flour
  • 50g of water

Day 1 : Mix 50g of the  yeast extract and 50g of whole meal flour together in a large jar (about 2l). Leave it in a warm place until the mixture doubles in size. Then keep it in the refrigerator.
Day 2 : Add 50g of the yeast extract and 50g of high grade flour into the jar and mix. Leave it in a warm place until the mixture doubles in size, then keep it in the refrigerator.
Day 3 : Add 50g of water and 50g of high grade flour into the jar and mix. Leave it in a warm place until the mixture doubles in size, then keep it in the refrigerator. *when you keep your starter in refrigerator, you should  repeat Day 2 step every a few days (or when you use the starter).

Every time I mix the mixture I mark the volume of the contents by sticking a piece of paper on the jar, that way it’s easy to see when the mixture doubles in size.
You might notice that the ratio of flour to liquid is it is always 1:1.
Instead of using water in the last step, you can use more of the yeast extract to make your starter stronger. And of course, you can use your choice of flour. One more thing, you can keep maki

Now the starter is ready for baking bread!

You can use yeast extract for baking bread if you wish but I prefer using the starter as it’s much more stable and takes less time to ferment.

There are many uses for this yeast extract – I will try to make lots of yummy things using it and will post the recipes!

Baguettes aux fruits

First time making baguettes.
I received a baguette baking sheet from my father in law in France as a birthday present. I just had to give it a try!

I used my wild yeast starter from prunes for this bread. The hydration ratio is 75%. The fruit are blueberries and cranberries.

Hmmmmm… Baking baguettes, it’s not easy. It looks ok but the coupe didn’t open up quite like I wanted it to. 😦
So, how about on the inside?

Not too bad but there’s still plenty of room for improvement of course.
It tastes pretty good, especially toasted with a nut of salted butter.

I was so happy to make my own baguettes without them turning into a complete disaster!



First attempt at bagels.

Nick had brought back some yummy organic smoked salmon from one of the vendors at work. We had some fresh mascarpone left over from our pasta making exercise on the week-end and some fresh rocket from our veggie patch.
They were yummy!

Pain de campagne


First (successful) pain de campagne. It’s the first time the “coupe” opened up as I wanted it to.

I am discovering how fascinating bread making is. There are so many variables at play – for instance, for the coupe to open up, it all happens in the first 10 minutes (mostly the first 6 really).
The bread changes dramatically in that short timespan. Humidity, temperature, the proving and the ingredients all come together at this time.
I was glued to the front of the oven, watching it rise, screaming on the inside, hoping it would turn out ok!


I am putting up this photo of the sliced bread as people who love making bread are always interested in checking out the insides. The crumb, the holes and the shine are all tell-tell signs of a good bread.
This one was very early on and I still have a lot to improve on!


Pain de campagne   (with linseed and black sesame)

High grade white flour (strong flour)  400g

Whole grain flour (stone ground)        60g

Rye flour                                                      40g

Salt                                                              2tsp

Instant dry yeast                                      2/3 tsp

Linseeds and black sesame           about 1/4 cup

I will put baker’s percentage next time!

Hello world!

This is my very first post on my first ever blog!

I’m going to try and blog about my experiences, living here in Wellington, and write about my experiments with food (I’m especially keen on making my own bread at the moment so you can follow me as I learn).

But first I guess I should probably introduce myself.
My name is Mamiko, I am Japanese, wife of a French-Australian artist and mother of 2 little girls who are full of life and energy. Through my husband’s work we have ended up travelling and moving around an awful lot. I have had to give up on my profession of choice, magazine editor, but in doing so I have had some time to explore different avenues and have been focusing a lot on food – on top of being a full-time mum!
I have worked in a few restaurants since leaving Japan so I guess it was a bit of a natural progression.

We have recently landed in Wellington, New Zealand, and have totally fallen in love with the place. After Melbourne, Sydney, London and Tokyo, it’s good to be back in a place where space isn’t an issue (we have a garden and grow a lot of our own herbs and veg), where people are genuinely friendly and kind and where the quality of the local produce is second to none. And there is a healthy foodie culture to boot!

You’ll have to bare with me as my English isn’t fluent by any means but I’ll try my best to keep it intelligible!