I live in Utah; it’s a fact that diversity is sparse here. Last I heard, there is only a 2% Asian population throughout the state. It’s hopeless when you have a craving for an ethnic treat.
A desire for fresh (not frozen, not refrigerated, not boxed with preservatives) mochi empowered me the last couple of weeks. So, fueled by an urge that could be mistaken to the effect of a pregnant woman, I took craving to mat and pounded out some mochi.
Behold, proof and recipe for my successful results:
Your needs for home-made mochi:
- *sticky rice
- *filling (sesame paste, red bean paste, peanut powder, sweetened taro paste, coconut paste, chocolate ganache, nutella, etc.)
- *“outing” | or uh, something to dust the sticky mochi (kinako/soy bean flour, katakuriko/potato starch, shredded coconut, etc.)
- *mortar and pestle
1. Cook sticky rice. Use a ratio of 1:1 (one cup rice, one cup water) or follow directions for your rice cooker.
2. Place cooked rice in mortar and pound with pestle. Remember: pound not stir!
3. Once the rice has been pounded to a paste (no lumps from un-incorporated rice grains), prep for the sticky part.
4. This is the sticky part. With a bowl of water by your side, wet your hands and grab a golf-ball-sized amount of pounded rice (mochi). Round the ball out and flatten it in your hands. Tip: Wet your hands with water as they become sticky, but try to use as little water as possible. Excess water makes the mochi become mushy.
5. Sticky part continued: Spoon an appropriate amount of filling in the center of the flattened mochi. Bring the sides up to seal off the mochi ball. Roll the ball gently in your hands to smooth it out. Falling apart? Eat it! My friend Jenny ate one that “failed” every five minutes. She also ate her way to a slight mochi gut.
6. Dust the mochi ball with the “outing.” This prevents the mochi from sticking.
7. Eat and/or save. Mochi can be stored in the refrigerator for maybe a couple of weeks, but they harden quickly in the cold. You can also store mochi just covered and lying out if it’s not too warm, but consume within days of their making as they will mold.
Too much work? Try microwave mochi.