Menu for Hope III - Amai Story

11 December 2006

Yes, it’s that time of year again – Pim and other regional hosts have been busy organising the Menu for Hope III fundraising campaign. Last year we raised over $17,000 for UNICEF; this year, the money raised will support another worthy cause, the United Nations World Food Programme.

MfH III promises to be the most successful yet, with some fantastic prizes on offer from food bloggers all over the world. This year, I’m offering some fabulous sweets created by these talented folks at the Amai Tea & Bake House, AKA Kelli and Andrew of Lovescool.

I still remember when Kelli first wrote to me to tell me that she liked my photos – it must have been nearly two years ago and since then we’ve been talking… mainly about sweets :) Kelli and Andrew used to work in IT, but they have now realised their dream of opening a bakery. As you know if you’re a follower of their site, they launched the Amai Tea & Bake House just about a year ago (Amai means ‘sweet’ in Japanese) – their collections are expanding, but currently focused on cookies and brownies.

Everything is handmade, using only the highest quality, all natural ingredients. The cookies are moist, crumbly and full of flavour – the combinations are absolutely spot on, chai almond, earl grey & currant and green tea flavours being my favourites :) In fact, their green tea cookies were recently featured on the Rachael Ray Show! And their wonderfully moist dark chocolate brownies are studded with exotic fruits, for example lychee or white peach – they are rich, chocolatey and so delicious!

I recently had the chance to work for them, taking photos of their products for their website (as you can see, the packaging is just as exquisite as its contents), it was such a pleasure sharing their passion – especially for me as a sweet fan :) I couldn’t help sharing these gorgeous sweets with my friends and all the feedback was fantastic – although some didn’t want to bite into them as they look so pretty :) Their products are only available in the US at the moment, but I’m sure it won’t be long before I can buy them here in Europe… They are working towards opening their own store next year, even more exciting news for the New Yorkers out there!

So, my prize is 1 box each of

the code for my prize is EU31, so make sure you include it when you make your donation! You can read the small print below but meantime, if you aren’t a sweet fan (gasp!) there are plenty of other great prizes on offer at Pim’s site. Alternatively, you can see the Europe and UK round-up at David’s site.

Thank you so much for all your support!

Here’s what you need to know…

  1. Go to the donation page at
  2. Make a donation, each $10 will give you one raffle ticket toward a prize of your choice. The code for my prize is EU31. Please specify which prize you’d like in the ‘Personal Message’ section in the donation form when confirming your donation. You must write-in how many tickets per prize, and please use the prize code—for example, a donation of $50 can be 2 tickets for EU01 and 3 for EU02. (Please use the double-digits, not EU1, but EU01.)
  3. If your company matches your charity donation, please check the box and fill in the information so we could claim the corporate match.
  4. Please also check the box to allow us to see your email address so that we could contact you if you win. Your email address will not be shared with anyone.
  5. Check back on Chez Pim on January 15 for the results of the raffle.

Misc    Food - Sweet    21 comments    Permalink

  • MFH is such a great idea- we are honored you chose our sweets and happy to support the cause. Thank you also for the kind words about Amai. Andrew and I have been working hard this year, and seeing the pictures on your site is really special. Thank you Keiko! May MFH III break all fundraising records…

    Posted by Kelli | 12 December 2006 #
  • Beautiful, delicious-looking products for a great cause! Merry Christmas, Keiko!

    Posted by maria~ | 12 December 2006 #
  • Wonderful photography! Also I have to say I wasn’t impressed by the brownies’ taste. Because of the nice looking design I bought some at Dean&Deluca, but their taste was a slight letdown.

    Posted by Kiri | 12 December 2006 #
  • Wow Keiko – those look just gorgeous – but as you say, how do you justify biting into them and destroying them?!? :o) What a fantastic prize – I may have to put in a bid for that!

    Posted by Jeanne | 12 December 2006 #
  • Dear Keiko – Kelli and Andrew are so lucky to have you photograph their creations. All of them look amazing. I especially liked the brownie packages. Btw, I am looking forward to the post about your trip.

    Posted by Cenk | 12 December 2006 #
  • I have to agree Cenk! We are lucky to have Keiko take our pictures. She did a wonderful job (as always).

    Kiri- I’m sorry you didn’t have a good experience. Can you tell us more about what you thought? I appreciate the feedback. Also, are you sure you got Amai brownies? Currently Dean & Deluca does not sell our brownies (only our cookies). They are a new product and only available directly from our website.

    Posted by Kelli | 12 December 2006 #
  • you did a great job for their website, and it’s time for menu for hope again, hurray!

    Posted by Lil | 13 December 2006 #
  • since it is available in the U.S., does that mean it can be shipped to the U.S. to my home address. They looks so good!

    Posted by veron | 13 December 2006 #
  • うわぁ~~すばらしい!尊敬です。

    Posted by akane:rgb~nanairo-nianco | 14 December 2006 #
  • Such lovely treats Keiko!

    Joyeux Noel!

    Posted by bea at La tartine gourmande | 14 December 2006 #
  • Beautiful photography once again Keiko!

    Posted by Jetset | 15 December 2006 #
  • I would love to have goodies like that available here (in Manila)...sigh…they are adorable and I am sure taste heavenly! :) Nothing beats things that are both yummy AND pretty :)

    Posted by joey | 15 December 2006 #
  • this is a very nice blog with a lot of beautiful pictures.
    I know a french site (Which i smy favorite)where there is a lot of receipts and other nice picture.

    Posted by falbala | 15 December 2006 #
  • beautiful site! inspirational! thank you Keiko.

    Posted by aiko | 15 December 2006 #
  • Keiko, I remember when the champagne brownies were introduced last year on the blog and how disappointed I was when I missed the opportunity to order one. Well, I’ve just returned from a favorite tea shop in Pittsford, NY where I enjoyed your tea cookies and a botanical brownie—OMG! I’m so proud of what you have accomplished and will be sure to get my order in for the champagne brownies this year. Congratulations!!!

    Posted by Jennifer Baskerville-Burrows | 15 December 2006 #
  • What a beautiful site and what a great culinary and photographic discovery for me. Complimenti :)

    Posted by Nicoletta | 16 December 2006 #
  • Wow, I love your website, very inspiring!

    Posted by jeeyun | 18 December 2006 #
  • Hi Keiko,

    I’ve recently discovered your site and could I just say what a great job you’ve done. And congratulations on those photos for Amai. I’ll be returning often!+

    Posted by Steven | 18 December 2006 #
  • please send large picture Catalog

    Posted by Mohsen | 21 February 2007 #
  • 你们做的很专业 你们这样的热爱生活的精神让我很感动 原来生活不是做多大的事业 而是把你爱做的做好 就像一块小蛋糕!

    Posted by 亚 | 22 July 2007 #
  • delicious!!

    Posted by karen sloan | 25 May 2010 #

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