After my last attempt at Washoku (traditional Japanese cooking) I thought it was time for my next adventure. This time in Wagashi though! Wagashi is traditional Japanese confectionery. Yes you guessed it, the “wa” in both words means “traditional Japanese”.
Wanting to make Ichigo Daifuku イチゴ大福 (strawberry mochi) at this time of the year sounds pretty lunatic, doesn’t it? And well it really is a little crazy but crazy things are so much fun! Ichigo Daifuku is Mochi, a chewy and very sticky rice flour dough filled with Anko (sweet bean paste) and a whole strawberry. If your look for pictures of Mochi on the internet you will mostly find Mochi covered in potato starck because that’s the only way to handle them! Once touched the dough is really difficult to remove from your hands so the cute things need to be wrapped in a leaf, starch or soybean flour.
Personally I‘m more into the salty version of Mochi that is grilled and wrapped in a sheet of salty and roasted Nori and eaten with soy sauce. You can find it on top of soups or even in soups although the consistency then changes significantly. For some reason I don’t really enjoy the flour that is used to spread on top of Mochi so I made some glossy and wet ones and some floury ones.. The texture and feeling of the glossy ones is so much more my taste! hehe..
eee?! sweet Mochi with Nori? Oh yes please! I love the taste of Nori everywhere.. it honestly tasted so good!
Basically it‘s three things you need if you want to make simple Mochi: Mochiko (sweet rice flour), Anko (red bean paste) & water. For my Mochi I didn’t use Anko but Taromochi. The difficult thing is to handle the unbelievably sticky Mochi dough and wrapping it around the filling… but the feeling is priceless. It‘s so soft and bouncy and it feels like a living thing!
Making Ichigo Daifuku with frozen strawberries isn’t the most clever idea.. but still tasty
To see what’s inside the other Mochi and look at some pics of the preparation, read on~
In case you haven’t noticed already, the green and purple Mochi are from a Chinese grocery store and not self-made.
Divide the dough in smaller parts and cook them in water until the pop up to the surface. For the filling I used different things. Since I didn’t have any Anko I used Taromochi and made a small cut to fill them with grapes or frozen strawberries. Of course the real Ichigo Daifuku are made with fresh strawberries but it’s definitely not the season anymore. Wrap the cooked Mochi around the stuffed Taromochi and it’s finished! If you like you can sprinkle some Kinako 黄粉 (soybean flour) or starch over them, it makes it a lot easier to touch & eat!! Do you like Mochi?!