At SUGOi Sweets in Chicago, chocolatier Elle Lei feels like she’s just scratching the surface of mochi potential. “Sometimes the simplest combinations win me over and I still have never found anything I do not like about the first daifuku mochi I made… fresh strawberry with fresh whipped cream and a sprinkling of matcha powder,” she says.
This creation, for which we share the recipe below, reminds her of her first time in Japan, “my first daifuku mochi experience, most importantly… always puts a smile on my face”. It is her favorite because of the contrast of the texture provided by the freshness wrapped inside the mochi. Not to mention the image of the strawberry cross-section. “While I have some recipe ideas I am really excited about, I will never forget my first mochi love!” she adds.
Strawberry and Cream Daifuku
- 250 g mochiko flour
- 75 g corn starch
- 400 g whole milk
- 30 g water
- 130 g powdered sugar
- 50 g butter
- corn starch (for dusting)
Whisk together mochiko flour, corn starch, powdered sugar in a microwavable bowl. Add milk and water and mix until liquid is fully incorporated. Strain the batter to remove any lumps, the mixture should be smooth like pancake batter.
Cover the bowl with a film of plastic wrap, microwave on high for two minutes, the mixture should look semi transparent, stir the mixture with spatula to help even heating, you will see the mochi dough is forming. Uncover and microwave for another 30 seconds to 1 minute until the dough is evenly cooked (all the dough becomes the same color), it should be sticky, thick and stretchy.
Remove the mochi dough from the microwave and stir in butter little by little, while the dough is still hot, use a spatula or gloved hand to incorporate the butter until the butter is fully absorbed, knead the dough until it is glossy and almost translucent. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside.
Place the mixer bowl and whisk in the freezer for at least 15 minutes to chill.
- 960 g heavy whipping cream
- 112 g powdered sugar
- 1 u vanilla bean
Pour heavy cream, powdered sugar, vanilla paste in the cold mixing bowl and whisk on high until medium to stiff peaks form, do not over mix. Transfer into a piping bag and set aside in the fridge.
Transfer the room temp mochi dough on a dusted cutting board or kitchen surface. Dust the mochi dough and rolling pin as necessary, roll the dough into approximately 1/4 inch sheet, use cookie cutter to cut out multiple rounds as mochi wrappers.
Place a mochi wrapper onto the half sphere mold/ramekin(thinly dusted with cornstarch), pipe some whipped cream in the center of the mochi wrapper, add a strawberry onto the cream, finished with more cream, to make strawberry surrounded by the cream, then close the mochi (similar to closing the dumpling, fold the edges of the mochi together over the filling, pinching tightly so they stick together), once the mochi is closed, unmold the mochi upside down onto a plate or cupcake liner, brush off the excess starch.
- Washed Strawberry (remove stem and tip, pat dried)
- Matcha powder (optional)
Decorate as you please (for example, dusted with matcha powder or add dried salted cherry blossom flower). Enjoy immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one day.