Tag Archives:  静岡

Japanese Cakes/Wagashi 12: Recipe-Dango/Sweet Dumplings

DANGO-1a
(Mitarashi Dango)

This simple recipe is particularly dedicated to my friends at Bouchonfor2, Bread + Butter, Eeyoreblues 27 and The Sophisticated Gourmet!

Japanese dango are not complicated, although it might be better to make a lot at a time!

INGREDIENTS:
-Rice (“Uruchi Kome”/normal Japnese round rice): 200g
-Water (for dango): 130cc
-Water (for sauce): 60cc
-Cornstarch: 1 teaspoon
-Sugar: 1 teaspoon
-Soy sauce: 2 teaspoons

RECIPE:

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Wash rice thoroughly.
If rice is no-wash type, skip 3 first steps.

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Once the rice washing water is coming out clean, drain rice and spread ontowel. Take off all excess humidity.

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Let the rice dry for two hours.

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Pour rice in Blender/mixer. First work the blender for only a few seconds at a time until all the rice has been broken completeley. Then blend three times 15 seconds at a time.

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If the rice does not turn into powder easily, sift rice as many times as necessary until all rice has been reduced to powder.

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Finish the job with mortar and pestle.

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Once the rice has been reduced completely topowder, work the pestle in for 5 more minutes.

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Add water and mix well with spoon.

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Divide into small portions and steam for 15 minutes.

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In a pan add cornstarch to water (for the sauce). keep stirring over a low fire. once the water has been become transparent add sugar and soy sauce and mix well until you obtain a smooth syrup. take off fire.

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Fill a glass with water and keep within arm’s reach.
Drop all the steamed dango paste into mortar.
Work dango paste with a wet wooden pestle.
Once the paste ahas been become sticky and elastic, form small balls (the operation should not last more than 10 minutes).
Wet them to prevent them from sticking to each other.

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Push a wet (important!) stick through the balls (4 or 5 at the most).
Grill the balls (or not) for better effect.
Serve them smeared with syrup.

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Japanese Cakes/Wagashi 11: Dango/Sweet Dumplings

DANGO-1a
(Mitarashi Dango)

Dango (団子) is a Japanese dumpling made from mochi-ko (rice flour), related to mochi. It is often served with green tea.
In Edo times, they were very popular at tea stands along the country roads.

Dango are eaten year-round, but the different varieties are traditionally eaten in given seasons. Three to four dango are often served on a skewer. One variety of dango from Hokkaidō is made from potato flour and baked with shoyu (soy sauce).

Types of dango:

There are many different varieties of dango which are usually named after the various seasonings served on or with it.

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Chadango: Green-tea flavored Dango.

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Dango served covered with anko

Actually, if you want to write all about Dango, you’d need to publish a whole book!

Chichi dango: Slightly-sweet light treats usually eaten as a dessert.

DANGO-1
Hanami dango: Also has three colors, Hanami dango is traditionally
made during Sakura-viewing season. Hence the name Hanami (Hanami means “flower viewing”; hana meaning “flower”, and mi meaning “to see”).

DANGO-1b
Kushi dango: Dango held by a skewer

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Mitarashi: Covered with a syrup made from shouyu (soy sauce), sugar and starch.

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Japanese Dessert: Kakigoori/Shaved Ice with Syrup

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Kakigōri (かき氷) is a very popular Japanese dessert made from shaved ice flavored with syrup.
It was served for the first time in Kanagawa Prefecture in 1869!

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Popular flavors include: strawberry, cherry, lemon, green tea, grape, melon, “blue-Hawaii” sweet plum, and colorless syrup. Some shops provide colorful varieties by using two or more different syrups. To sweeten Kakigōri, condensed milk is often poured on top of it.

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It is nearly identical to a snow cone but can have a slightly rougher consistency and a spoon is almost always used. The traditional way of making kakigōri involves using a hand cranked machine to spin a block of ice over an ice shaving blade. However, electric ice shavers are most often used, though street vendors can still be seen hand-shaving ice blocks in the summer.

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In addition to the streets, kakigōri is also sold in festivals, convenience stores, coffee shops, and restaurants. During the hot summer months, kakigōri is sold virtually everywhere in Japan. Some coffee shops serve it with ice cream and sweet bean paste. Convenience stores may also sell it already flavored and packaged similar to ice cream.

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In other countries in East Asia, similar varieties can be seen.

Halo halo: Filipino shaved ice topped with sweetened beans, nata de coco and ice cream. “Halo-Halo” literally means “mix-mix” in the Tagalog language. Some shops in Japan also sell these sweets.
Bingsu (빙수) Korean shaved ice. The most popular kind is patbingsu. It is topped with sweetened red beans, canned fruits, and soybean powder. Many other varieties can be found throughout the country.
Bàobīng (刨冰) in Mandarin Pinyin or Chhoah-peng (剉冰) in Taiwanese POJ: Taiwanese shaved ice. There are many varieties in Taiwan. Some of them are topped with fresh fruits, fruits syrup and condensed milk. Some of them are topped with sweetened beans, glutinous rice balls and brown sugar syrup, while others will even use seafood. Some vendors use milk ice to make finer shaved ice, and some vendors may sometimes use a hand blade to shave block ice in order to produce rough crushed ice.
Ice kacang: Malaysia and Singapore Shaved ice topped with sweetened syrup of various colours and flavours, condensed and evaporated milk, and sometimes also durian pulp or vanilla ice cream. Beneath the ice sweetened red beans, canned fruit, attap seeds and grass jelly are usually added. Electric ice shavers are often used; though some vendors may use a hand blade to shave the ice in order to produce a rough texture. A variation of this would be Cendol which is shaved ice with sweet green coloured glutinous rice noodles drizzled with palm sugar it is usually accompanied with kidney beans and canned sweetcorn.
Nam Kang Sai: Thai Shaved Ice. In Thailand, this kind of cold dessert is very popular as well. The differences from other countries’ shaved ice is that in the Thai version the toppings (mixings) are in the bottom and the shaved ice is on top. There are between 20-30 varieties of mixings that can be mixed in. Among them are young coconut that have been soaked in coconut milk, black sticky rice, chestnuts,sweetened taro, red beans, sarim (thin strands of cooked flour that is very chewy and slippery) and many more.

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Japanese Cakes/Wagashi 10: Youkan: Easy Recipe-Mizu Youkan

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Youkan come in many guises. Here is an easy and ver basic recipe for “Mizu Youkan” that you will be able to adapt into many creations of yours! For vegans, vegetarians and omnivores!

INGREDIENTS:
-Boiled azuki beans: 1 can (430 g)
-Brown sugar: 60 g
-Salt: a pinch
-Agar agar Powder (“kanten” in Japanese): 4 g
-Water: 300 ml + 300 ml

RECIPE:

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Blend beans and 300 ml of water until smooth.

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Pass mixture through fine sieve.

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In 300 ml of water drop agara agar. Bring to boil, stirring at the same time. Then keep stirring vern medium fire for 1 minute.

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Switch off fire. Pour sugar and salt. Mix well. Add bean paste. Mix well.

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Pour in recipients of your choice (that is when the fun starts!) and let cool completely. Keep in fridge (not too cold, please). Take out of recipient and serve!

More recipes to come!

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Japanese Cakes/Wagashi 9: Youkan

YOUKAN-JELLY

Here is another popular type of Japanese Wagashi fit for Vegans and Vegetarians: Youkan!

YOUKAN-MIZUYOKAN
Mizu Youkan

Yōkan (羊羹) is a thick jellied dessert made of red bean paste, agar (寒天/”kanten” in Japanese, and sugar. It is usually sold in a block form, and eaten in slices.

There are two main types: neri yōkan and mizu yōkan. “Mizu” means “water”, and indicates that it is made with more water than usual. Mizu yōkan is often chilled and eaten in summer.
Although most yōkan found in Japan and abroad are typically made with red bean paste, yōkan made from white kidney bean paste (しろあん, 白餡, shiro an in Japanese) are also relatively common. This type of yōkan is milky and translucent with a much milder flavour than that made of red bean paste.

YOUKAN-GREENTEAYOUKAN
Tea Youkan

As such, they can be effectively flavoured and coloured by using green tea powder.

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MizuyōkanYōkan may also contain chopped chestnuts, persimmons, whole sweetened azuki beans, figs, and sweet potato, among other additions. Sugar can be also be substituted with honey, dark brown sugar, or molasses to alter the taste of the yōkan produced. There is also shio yōkan, which uses small amounts of salt as a sweetener.

Other Pictures of Youkan:

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YOUKAN-CHERRY

YOUKAN-PINK

I will introduce an easy recipe soon!

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Japanese Cakes/Wagashi 8: Recipe-Beni Mochi

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Here is a simple Japanese Cake/Wagashi Recipe that can be adapted to all shapes by vegans and vegetarians! Beni Mochi.
Beni Mochi, or 紅餅 in Japanese, means “Red Mochi”.

INGREDIENTS: 16 pieces

-Rice flour: 250 g
-White sugar: 80 g
-Water: 100 ml/half a cup (for white mochi)
-Brown sugar (take care in choosing the colour): 80 g
-Water: 100 ml/half a cup (for red mochi)

RECIPE:

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Divide rice flour into two equal parts (125 g) and pour into two different bowls.

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In a deep pan, drop red sugar and add water. Heat over fire until completed melted. Switch off fire. Add rice flour and mix well.
Repeat same procedure with white sugar.

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In a steamer, put mochi pastes (take care no to mix them) on a steaming paper and steam for 10 minutes.

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Take out. Let cool. Make two balls and keep in different bowls.

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Shape the mochi as above or according to your preference. Put them back inside the steamer on steming paper and steam for 10 more minutes.

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Let cool and serve!
Are best enjoyed with Japanese tea, hot or cold!

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LE CAFE-LABO: Classic Cakes (12)-Acapulco

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It had been some time since I checked on that great confectionery institution in Shizuoka City, LE CAFE-LABO, so yesterday afternoon I paid a visit to their shop In Isetan Department Store to find out if they had a new creation on display for my students!

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In fact they did!
The cake is called “Acapulco”.
I refrained buying two of them, otherwise my lady student might miscontrued my intent! LOL

It is very feminine and luscious not only in looks and concept, but also in taste and texture.
The base is a chocolate joconde short cake with a layer of cassis mousse surmounted with a small chocoate macaron inside. The whole is covered with a “mound” of green apple mousse overlaid with a thin layer of cassis jell.

Perfect for the summer with a cold glass of tea!

LE CAFE-LABO
424-0886 Shizuoka City, Shimizu Ku, Kusanagi, 46
Tel.: 054-3441661
Also available at Isetan Dept. Store, Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Shichiken-Cho.

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