Hello everyone! Last Saturday one of my schools had its sports festival (post to come soon), so I got today, Monday, off. I decided to celebrate by taking a shot at one of my favourite Japanese treats: mochi!
Mochi is a traditional New Year’s treat in Japan, though of course it can be eaten all year round. It’s made from mochigome, a kind of glutinous rice, and is soft and chewy and can be sweet or salty. It comes in many different forms – there’s daifuku (mochi stuffed with sweet bean paste); ichigo daifuku (mochi stuffed with whole strawberries – my favourite!); mochi ice cream (mochi stuffed with – you guessed it! – ice cream); sakura mochi (mochi flavoured and coloured with cherry blossoms and wrapped in a pickled cherry blossom leaf); and countless other kinds. My favourite okonomiyaki is mochi cheese!
Making real, genuine, fresh-made mochi is a very strenuous process – you can it see here in this awesome video. To make proper mochi, I would need to soak and steam mochigome and place it in a mortar. The rice is ground, kneaded, and then beaten rhythmically by two people with wooden pestles called kine.
Since I don’t have a mortar and pestle (or even the strength to properly pound the mochi), I had to settle for an easier method of making something closer to dango, a cousin of mochi that is made from mochiko (rice flour) instead of mochigome.
I looked at a lot of recipes, but the one I decided to follow was this one at food52.com. My only regret with this recipe is the coconut milk. Many of the recipes I looked up called for it, and I dutifully added about 3/4 of a cup. While it is delicious on its own (Paul even likes it, whoaaaa), I’d wanted to make this to be green tea flavoured – but alas, the coconut was too overpowering, and I didn’t taste the matcha at all!
I’d imagine that the rice flour can easily be found at your local Asian food market. Surprisingly, our grocery store didn’t have the rice flour, so I just had to buy the rice and grind it on my own!
Makes 1 sheet of 9×9″ mochi.
- 1 cup of mochiko (sweet rice flour)
- 1 cup of sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
- 1 tablespoon of green tea powder
- 1 cup of water
- 3/4 cup of coconut milk (full fat)
- cornstarch for dusting
- Preheat the oven to 140C (284F).
- Line a baking dish with parchment paper. I used a 9×9″ pan, so my mochi was fairly thick. Use a bigger pan for thinner pieces.
- Whisk mochiko, sugar, baking powder, and green tea powder together in one bowl. In another, whisk the coconut milk and water together.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet and whisk until smooth. Pour it into the baking dish and cover with foil.
- Bake for about 50 minutes. Cool overnight.
- Dust with cornstarch. Cut with a knife wrapped in saran wrap so that it doesn’t stick.
I hope you enjoy this if you decide to make it! As you can see from the title, this is only my first attempt at making mochi. I’ve got plenty of leftover rice, so I’m going to try again soon and take a shot at a recipe without coconut milk. What flavours should I experiment with?