Fruit Daifuku Mochi フルーツ大福餅

This is a popular sweet even for the people who do not like sweet bean paste very much. The right image shows Cranberry Daifuku Mochi, which has a rice cake including 2 table spoons of cranberry sauce and stuffing of Shiro Koshi-An with chopped cranberries. The sourness of the cranberry makes refreshing taste.
(Cooking Time: about 1 hour. Makes 12)

Ingredients :
Sweet Bean Paste 250 g


Glutinous Rice Flour 200 g
Water 220 ml + extra
Syrup(White Granulated Sugar + Water) sugar 200 g + water 50 ml
Colorant A little
Corn/Potato Starch (about 1 lb.)

1. Wash fruits and strain off the water from them. Remove the peel or the stem from them and cut into about 1 inch dices if it is needed. Strawberry may be used whole or halves. Kiwi fluit may be suitable to cut into one eighth. In the case of small fruits such as blueberry, use 5 or 10 eaches for stuffing of each Daifuku Mochi.
2. Wrap each fruit with An paste and make 12 balls.
3. Sieve potato starch once and make a flat layer of it in a large tray with a a spatula and so on. Prepare extra potato starch for the following steps.
4. Put Mochi-ko into a glass/ceramics bowl (glass is more convenient to observe inside) and mix water bit by bit. If you want, dissolve colorant into water before mixing.
5. Make syrup. Pour water in a small glass bowl and heat in microwave oven for 1 minute. Mix a half ammount of sugar into the small bowl and heat again for 30 seconds. Mix the rest of the sugar and heat again for 1 or 2 minutes until boiling up and turning the color transparent. The sugar should be dissolved completely, but please take care not to burn the sugar by heating longer.
6. Cover the bowl in the direction #4 with a lid or a plastic film and heat in microwave oven for about 1 minutes. Open the lid and mix the inside well. Repeat this process until the inside becomes translucent and sticky (about 2 or 3 times, depending on the power of the microwave.) Keep heating about 30 seconds after the inside rise up, and then turn off. This is 餅(もち) (Mochi / rice cake).

7. Immediately, add the syrup into the bowl bit by bit and mix them well with a wood spatula until the syrup blends into Mochi well. Repeat this process and knead well until the Mochi stretches easily as shown in the right photo image. If the Mochi cools down and it becomes tough to blend, cover the bowl and heat in the microwave again for about 30 seconds. If the Mochi is still firm after mixing all of the syrup, blend a small amount of water into it to control its softness.
8. Pour the Mochi onto the layer of the potato starch in the tray. Sift potato starch on your hands and divide the Mochi into 12 eaches. Expand each of them as the size of your palm. Please beware against burning yourself by the hot Mochi.
9. Brush the extra potato starch on a side of the Mochi sheet and put a ball of the fruits and sweet bean paste on it. Wrap and close at the bottom. Brush the extra potato starch on the surface, and serve.

Notes & Arrangements
You can make syrup in the direction #5 with a small pan on a stove.
It is a little tough work to knead Mochi in the direction #6. So, it is more convenient to do it with some people alternately.
It is also tasty to mix some fruit paste into Mochi. Please reduce the amount of water to make the syrup and mix fruit paste into it.
If you make this sweet without fruit, it is the standard Daifuku Mochi, of course. You can also make 豆大福餅(まめだいふくもち) (Mame Daifuku Mochi) by mixing some boiled beans into the Mochi.
The softness of the Daifuku Mochi may recover in room temparature even after keeping 2 or 3 days in refrigerator. The longer term under refrigeration or freezing, the firmer of the Mochi. You can make it softer by heating a short time in microwave, but overheating makes the Daifuku Mochi melted and crushed. Please make sure of watching it during heating.


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