Friday, June 3, 2011

Mochi!

Mochi is a naturally vegan desert which I’m pretty sure originated from Japan (although I’m not entirely sure...if you ask other Asians they’ll tell you they came up with mochi @_@, whatever…lol).

It usually consists of a chewy outside with a nice sweet filling, an Asian jelly doughnut if you will (not really, they are actually completely different). The word mochi refers to the chewy outside which is made of glutinous rice flour. Traditionally,making mochi requires a lot of back breaking work, pounding of rice with a large wooden hammer, and patience; none of which I have at the moment so we’ll take a short cut!

Sesame filled (and covered!) mochi!

Ingredients:

Outside covering
·         1 cup glutinous rice flour (called 'Mochiko', Koda Farms is an easy to find brand)
·         1 ½ cup water
·         ½ cup sugar
·         Cornstarch (plenty of it!)

Fillings!:
·         Red bean paste
·         Sesame paste
o   Black sesame butter (aka black tahini)
o   Agave nectar
o   Coarsely ground black sesame seeds
o   Peanut butter
·         Green bean paste
·          Soy ice cream!

Notes: The sky is the limit really for what you want to use as your mochi filling! Ariel made a nice mochi with boysenberries and almond butter—soooo tasty! I would just stir clear of squirrels and babies as filling.

Instructions:
I would prepare whatever filling you want to fill your mochi with first before you make the outer covering, since once the covering is made you’ll need to work really quickly to fill the mochi, since it becomes hard to work with once it cools off too much. In most cases, this just entails opening up a can, though if you want to make a fancy filling you should definitely prepare it before making the covering.

One filling that is common in a lot of mochi is sesame seed paste (ingredients needed for it are listed in the ingredients section).  There is no set ratio for how much of each ingredient goes into the paste. I use 1/8 cup peanut butter, 1/8 cup  black sesame butter, 2 table spoons agave nectar, and 2/3 cup coarsely ground black sesame paste, and mix thoroughly with a spoon.

Don't worry it's really tasty!

You will notice that the ratio of rice flour to water in the outside covering is 1 to 1 1/2, so if you want to make more, it should be fairly easy to scale up! Also the sugar portion is very adjustable, though I find anything above this 2 parts flour to 1 part sugar ratio a bit too sweet. Mix the flour and sugar well; then mix your dry ingredients into the water. Make sure you mix thoroughly or else your mochi will be lumpy!

Once everything is well mixed microwave the mixture (preferable in a glass or ceramic bowl) on high for about 4 to five minutes. Once it’s done take it out (careful the bowl will be really hot!) and mix it until it seems uniform and put it back in the microwave for another 4 to 5 minutes and mix when done. At this point it should be nice and stretchy, if not I would stick it back in the microwave for another 2 minutes. This makes a plain tasting outer covering (but still really good). If you want to spiff it up, you can add extracts or other flavorings. One thing that I like to do is brew tea in the water that I mix with the flour.

After the 3rd time microwaving the glutinous rice batter you’re ready for the filling! Here you have to work quickly because the batter becomes hard to work with once it cools down! First, coat your work surface with plenty of corn starch to prevent sticking. Pour your batter out on to your work surface coating the surface of your batter. Take either a rolling pin or use your hands to flatten it out (careful, it will be very hot!). When flattening out your batter throw on more cornstarch to prevent any additional sticking that might happen. 

The mochi slowly starts to take shape...!

Once your batter is about an 1/8th of an inch thick, start cutting it into little squares, then put dollops of your filling in the center. The way I like to fold the mochi up is by bringing corners that are diagonally across from each other to the center and then pinching the edges closed as they meet, but that’s not the only way to do it! Find what works best for you! ~(^_^~)

Just a nice dollop!

Once you’ve enclosed your mochi they are essentially ready to eat! Happy Eats!
(~^_^)~   ~(^_^~)

Yum yum yum! So Tasty!

2 comments:

connieszeto said...

oh god ariel teach me how to make thissss...@_@ yummmm

Morgan Yen said...

Wow! I love mochi!

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