This is a small-sized one that I made using only half of a strawberry for each
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Ichigo Daifuku (strawberry and sweet bean paste in rice cake)
Ingredients: (makes about 10 )**
150 g unsweetened mochiko (rice flour)
170 ml water
about 10 strawberries
Shiroan*(sweetened white bean paste), 20 to 30 g for each
* can be substituted by azuki-an (red bean paste)
** Adopted from the recipe on the package of Maeda Shiroan
Wash strawberries, remove stems and pat dry with paper towel. Cover each strawberry with shiro-an (20 to 30 g each), stem-side down. Leave the tip of strawberries uncovered like this. It will show nice red color through the rice-cake skin.
In a microwavable bowl, mix rice flour and water and knead well. (It may be easier to mix the flour and water in a plastic bag and knead, so that the mixture does not stick to your hands while kneading, then empty the bag into a microwavable bowl.) Often daifuku/dumpling recipes say that the dough should feel like your ear lobe, but microwave method requires more water, so don’t worry if your mixture turns out very soft. Cover with plastic wrap, not too tight so that steam can escape, and microwave for 4 to 5 minutes (with 500 W microwave). It may be better to take out the dough after 2 minutes, stir well, cover with plastic wrap again and microwave 2 more minutes.
With my microwave, 4 minutes in total seemed enough. If your dough looks a little yellowish and plastic-like when it comes out of the microwave, it is overdone. (Photo: dough that just came out of microwave)
Stir well (with a wet pestle, if available) until the dough is glossy, soft and elastic, as in this photo. A strong arm helps a lot here.
* They say that you can freeze this rice-cake dough, but I’m not sure how long it keeps well in the freezer. Could be about a month????
* I updated this part. This is easier and safer. Using a wet wooden spatula (or something similar), scrape out the hot dough onto a flat surface heavily floured with corn/potato starch. Let it spread flat and, while it is warm, cut into desired number of pieces with a dough cutter or something, also dusted with corn/potato starch. Dry your hands, dust well with the starch and shape each piece into a ball.
Flatten and stretch each of the small balls of dough into a thin disk, and wrap a strawberry-bean paste ball wit it. (Place the tip of the strawberry in the center of the disk.) Pinch the edges tight to seal. (Flour fingers well so that the rice cake won't stick, but try not to get much flour on the edges to be sealed together.) The sealed part should be the bottom of the daifuku. Shape into a ball.
Categories: Sweets, Wagashi