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Translating Japanese Cookbooks: Marmalade RUM Balls

Hello everyone, it is Umi again. I am back with my second recipe in the journey that is me translating Japanese cookbooks. Thank you everyone that read my last post and I hope y’all will stick with me. Alright, let us get into it.

Just as the first recipe, this one comes from a cookbook called 10 Minutes Sweets ときめく十分スイーツ (flash 10 minutes sweets) by 若山曜子 (Wakayama Yoko).


Chapter 。1


Juubun de sugu ni oishii sui-tsu.

Ten minutes of delicious sweets, soon enough.


Mamaredo no ramuboru

Marmalade RUM Ball

Now, I have no clue what kind of sweet a lamb balls are. I tried to search for them and only lamb meatballs came up. But, from what I could see from the picture in the cookbook they look most similar to a mini cake pop. *EDIT* come to learn it is RUM balls

Illustration for article titled Translating Japanese Cookbooks: Marmalade RUM Balls

Ingredients List:

レーズン 20g

Rezun 20g

Raisins 20g


Oirukotingu o shite inai mono. Shite iru baai wa yudoishi suru.

Without oil coating. If so, blanch.

Before translating this recipe, I did not know that raisins could have an oil coating.



Ramu sake osaji 1

1 Tbl of rum


Bata osaji 1

1 Tbl of butter

I for one love saying butter this way.

カステラ 100g

Kasutera 100g

Castella 100g

I did have to look up and see what a castella is and I learned that it is a type of wagashi. It is most similar to sponge cake. Now, in a basic American grocery store, they are not going to have Japanese sponge cake. So I told my husband to just buy sponge cake, but I guess our local grocery store does not have that either. He got angel food cake instead.


アーモンドスライス あれば大さじ1

Amondo suraisu areba osaji 1

Almond slices, 1 Tbl if you have

チョコレート 10g

Chokoreto 10g

Chocolate 10g

Most English cookbooks will say what type of chocolate to use. This recipe just says 10 grams of chocolate, so I had my husband buy a milk chocolate bar that he could eat the rest of later.



Amondo pauda 30g

Almond Powder 30g

I made the assumption that this is the same thing as almond flour, which I already owned.


オレンジマーマレード 小さじ1

Orenji Mamaredo Kosaji 1

1 tsp orange marmalade


Kokoa pauda (muto) osaji 1-2

1-2 Tbl chocolate powder (unsweetened)

Unlike my last recipe, only one substitution had to be made with the ingredients. I, again, am thankful for my husband for doing the shopping for me during this quarantine. For the rum, I had no clue if you are supposed to use spiced rum or regular rum with raisins. Regular rum was purchased as the safe bet. I found it interesting that sake was put with the word rum in Japanese. I wonder if that is there to indicate that the rum is an alcohol. Well, ingredients were all purchased and it was time to start cooking.


1) レーズンにラム酒をからめ、ラップをかけ、電子レンジ10秒ほどほど加熱する。熱いうちにバターを加えてあえる。

Rezun ni ramu sake o karame, rappu o kake, denjirenji de 10 byo hodo kanetsu suru. Atsui uchi ni bata o kuwaete aeru.


Mix run with the raisins, cover with wrap, microwave for about 10 seconds. Add butter while hot.

I do not believe that 10seconds in the microwave was enough time to cook off the alcohol in the rum, but I followed the recipe. So, this step made an alcoholic mixture of rum, raisins, and butter. This combination did not smell that appetizing.



2) カステラは粗くちぎる。アーモンドスライスはからいりする。チョコレートは刻む。

Kasutera wa araku chigiru. Amando suraisu wa karairisuru. Chokoreto wa kizamu.

Roughly torn castella. Make almond slices. Chop the chocolate.

I roughly torgh my angel food cake, which I will have it known that this cake was very sticky. I already had whole almonds in my pantry, so instead of buying pre-sliced ones, I took the time cutting my own. Let me just say it was easier to cut chocolate than the almonds.

Illustration for article titled Translating Japanese Cookbooks: Marmalade RUM Balls

3) ココアパウダー以外の材料をすべてボウルに人れて混ぜ、10等分にして、丸くまとめる。仕上げにココアパウダーをまぶす。

Kokoa pauda igai no zairyo o subete boru ni hito rete maze, 10 toubun ni shite, maruku matomeru. Shiage ni kokoa pauda o mabusu.


All the ingredients except cocoa powder are mixed in a bowl by a person and divided into 10 equal parts and made round. Sprinkle chocolate powder on to finish.

After prepping the ingredients, I threw everything into my mixing bowl with the cake and mashed it together. I did not like that there would be chunks of chocolate in the balls, so i popped the bowl in the microwave for 10 seconds to melt it a little. This made the ball making messy. I was able to roll up about 13 balls and covered them in the chocolate powder.

Illustration for article titled Translating Japanese Cookbooks: Marmalade RUM Balls

I do have to say that this recipe was a miss. I am not the biggest fan of chocolate with other things. There were pieces with the orange rinds from the marmalade in them and those were the better ones. Texture wise, this would have been better with chopped raisins, rather than whole ones. I will not make this recipe again, but it was an interesting food to craft. My husband did not enjoy them either and he is more of a sweets person than I am. Sadly, I cannot bring these into work to try and get rid of them. I did enjoy eating the angel food cake we bought for this.


With a second recipe under my belt , I am getting even more excited about this project. I am already recognizing some words and what they mean. I tried to rely less on google translate and sounded out the katakana myself and figured out what the words were saying. I am still lost when it comes to the kanji. There were several new kanji in the recipe that I needed help with. Osaji and kosaji are the two words that have stuck with me. I doubt that tablespoon and teaspoon in Japanese will be used in a conversation. But hey, it is a start. I have started to reread my Japanese textbook to help me. I also wanted to reteach myself the verbs and the rules that go with them. I hope I did a better job translating this recipe and did not mess up as much.

Two recipes down and many more to go.

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