Writer, educator, global citizen- I consider myself a student of humanity with a case of chronic wanderlust. I am captivated by new and different, diving head first into any experience that comes along.

 
 

Hanami Mochi

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Mochi is an easy, tasty Japanese treat that is starting to catch on outside the Land of the Rising Sun. And while dango is the traditional treat for hanami, this mochi adaptation will just have to do (because even though the taste may be appreciated outside Japan, the ingredients are not easy to find).

This recipe is for the traditional hanami trio of pink, white, and green. Legend has it, the colors correspond to the sakura or cherry blossoms bursting out all over Japan this month. Pink for the bud, white for the flower, and green for the leaf that follows. Mochi are not typically flavored, but sometimes the ingredients used to color them will add a slight flavor - like the matcha used in this recipe.

If three batches of mochi seems daunting, though, don't worry; you can make a single batch of mochi anytime, with any flavor you like. Just keep the ratio the same. Also, for sweeter mochi, feel free to up the sugar.

Makes 15 Mochi Trios

Prep time: 0 minutes Cook time: 15 minutes Total time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

*This is enough for 3 batches (pink, white, green). For a single batch, use 1/3 of the following.

*3 cups Glutinous Rice Flour or Sweet Rice Flour divided

*6 tablespoons cornstarch divided

*3 – 4 cups water divided

*¾ cup sugar divided

½ tablespoon matcha powder

Red food color

Cornstarch for dusting

Directions:

1. In three microwavable bowls, divide the glutinous rice flour and cornstarch – 1 cup flour and 2 tablespoons cornstarch each. Stir together with a wire whisk.

2. Stir the matcha powder into one bowl to make the green mochi dough.

*Repeat the next steps for all three batches, doing one at a time. *

3. Add the water to flour/cornstarch mix and stir until smooth. Mixture should resemble thin pancake batter. Adjust water accordingly.

*Add food color to one batch to create pink mochi.*

4. Add sugar and stir to combine.

5. Cover with microwave-safe plastic wrap. Microwave on high for 3:00.

6. Carefully remove plastic wrap. If the dough is still liquid in the middle, stir with a silicon spatula and return to the microwave for 15-30 seconds.

7. Scrape dough onto surface dusted with cornstarch. When it is cool enough to handle comfortably, pull off and shape into walnut sized balls.

8. Serve trio of mochi – pink, white, green.

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