Classic hanabira mochi is actually very easy to make, but does take planning ahead.
Glenn A. Sorei Pereira
- shiratamako (sweet rice flour) – 50gm (1.76oz)
- water – 100cc (0.4C.)
- joshinko (rice flour) – 70gm (2.46oz)
- water – 130cc (0.52oz)
- sugar – 100gm (3.52oz)
- mochiko – as needed
misoan (miso flavored sweet bean paste)
- saikyo miso (sweet “Kyoto” miso) – as needed to personal taste
- lima beans or Japanese tebo beans – 1 to 3 pounds
- sugar – as needed to personal taste
- mizuame or light Karo corn syrup – 5 or more tablespoons
- red coloring – enough to make some of the dough pink (or separate batch)
gobo no satozuke (candied burdock root)
- gobo (burdock root) – depending on how many sweets are being made
- carrots – depending on how many sweets are being made
- water – enough to cover gobo/carrot
- sugar – double the water plus more
Gobo no satozuke (carrot can also be done at the same time, if used)
- Wash and peel gobo and cut into lengths so that it will extend beyond both edges of the gyuhi rounds by about 1/2cm on each side when placed on the middle of the round and 2 or 3cm square.
- After cutting, soak in water for 1/2 hour and then steam until soft through (if undercooked at this point and you proceed there will be no way to correct so you will have to begin again).
- Dissolve 2 parts of sugar in 1 part of water in a pan and place gobo in and bring to a low boil (do not boil too strongly so as to raise the syrup to the candy stage).
- The quantity of sugar/water syrup should be enough to cover gobo.
- Cook for about 15 minutes to 1/2 hour and remove from heat and cool with gobo remaining in the sugar/water syrup.
- When completely cool add a couple of tablespoons of sugar to the pan and bring to the boil again to dissolve the newly added sugar.
- Remove from heat and cool.
- Repeat this process about 10 more times over two or three days, each time adding more sugar.
- During the final cooking have a dish of fine granulated sugar ready (caster sugar works well).
- Using chopsticks lift 2 or 3 pieces of gobo from pan and allow excess sugar solution to drip off.
- Place in dish with sugar and completely cover.
- Lift out gobo and place on flat tray and let cool.
(Note – Do not let gobo cool after last cooking but make sure to place it in the granulated sugar while hot.)
Miso-an (miso flavored sweet bean paste)
- Follow regular an recipe except add saikyo miso to an after sugar is added. Add miso to personal taste. Start by adding a little and work your way up.
- Miso-an should be very soft, unlike an that is molded.
about 10 to 14 pcs
- Combine shiratamako and 100cc of water.
- Combine joshinko and sugar in 130cc of water and mix well to dissolve all lumps.
- Combine the shiratamako and joshinko mixtures and cook over medium heat until it gets very thick and doughy.
- Place the mixture that is now quite thick on a piece of Saran Wrap, or other cellophane wrap, lightly dusted with mochiko to prevent sticking.
- Carefully fold the four sides over the dough, one at a time, pressing gently to eliminate all air bubbles.
- The wrap should have no air spaces between it and the dough.
- Steam for about 10 minutes or until cooked completely through.
- (If the mixture is spread flat on the wrap it will cook quickly and completely through.)
- Remove from steamer and let cool for a few minutes to make handling easier (separate small amount to be tinted pink or make a separate pink batch).
- While still hot, roll flat on a board covered with mochiko to prevent sticking.
- Roll out to about 2 or 3mm (1/8″ – 3/16″) thick.
- Continue to use mochiko on board and roller to prevent sticking but being careful not to use too much.
- Flour a round shaped cutter or the rim of a rice bowl, about 10-12cm (4″) in diameter, and cut out rounds of the dough.
- Place on flat surface until ready to assemble.
- Tint some of the gyuhi dough pink and roll and cut into diamond shapes.
- Place a pink diamond on a round white gyuhi skin.
- Place one carrot and one gobo on center of diamond/round (or just 2 gobo).
- Place spoon full of miso-an on top of gobo/carrot.
- Gently fold over gyuhi in half making sure the top covers the bottom.
- Be sure to dust off excess mochiko.
- For best results, hanabiramochi should be assembled just before serving. The salt in the miso will begin leaching water from the gyuhi dough and will be come sticky and “sweaty” the longer it sits.