Saturday, September 26, 2020


 It's fun to make something different for birthday.  I decided to make MITARASHI DANGO for birthday.

As before in previous posts for MITARASHI DANGO, I decided to test cooking the MITARE  a bit different.  I heated sugar and soy sauce together.  As the sugar started to melt, I added only 150 ml of water and cook to reduce.  About 8 to 10 minutes into cooking, I mixed the 20 g of potato starch with 30 ml water.   Stir.  The mixture thickens.  This methods seem to have jelled up much faster than the previous few tries. 
Prepare the MITARE syrup.
 MITARE (sweet sauce for the DANGO)
Sugar 100 g
Soy sauce 50 ml
MIRIN   30 ml   (Japanese cooking wine)
Water 180 ml   - separate 150 ml   and 30 ml to mix with potato starch
Potato starch  - KATAKURIKO 20 g    (*or more - test it - DO NOT use CORN starch; arrow root starch is okay.)


The syrup should be thick enough to coat the Mochi Dango completely and not slipping off.

The DANGO Ingredients:

250 g GLUTINOUS RICE FLOUR (green bag)
Add 180 ml of warm water, and have another 180 ml of warm water ready.  (You might not need all of second cup of 180 ml warm water.)

Combine with warm water; mix.  Add other 180 ml of warm water 1 Tablespoon at a time.  Mix in until you have a soft supple dough - as soft as earlobe soft but not wet.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil.   Put enough water for the dough ball to float during cooking,
Roll into a ball. Divide into quarters.
Roll one into a rope.
Cut into 14 g pieces - weighed on scale or just equally using cookie dough scoop.
Get a pot of water boiling to cook DANGO.
Hold the dough ball between the palms of your hands.  Press down to squash the dough between the palms at the same time you start rolling the dough in a circular motion until you feel the dough has coagulated smoothly into a ball. 

Place balls into the boiling water.    Cover the rest to keep from drying up.
Notice the water calm down as the water temperature changes after adding DANGO.  Stir once to keep DANGO from sticking to the bottom of the pot.
Get a bowl of cold water ready.    As the water come to boil, notice each DANGO begins to float.  Keep an eye to make sure the water do not boil over.  Cook the floating DANGO for 2 minutes.  Take one tester and cut it open.  Make sure it is translucent - no white dough.  When the steam clears, taste it. 
Transfer the cooked DANGO into cold water to cool.
At this time, if the DANGO is a large size one, you could fill it in to make other type of DANGO.

Skewer to strand 3 DANGO to a serving bamboo stick.
Coat with MITARE syrup.  Serve.


TOKOROTEN - Japanese Snack Noodle

 TOKOROTEN is not my favorite, but when it comes to hot summer day, it always make me to think about it.  I would go to the corner snack store and ask for it.  The store lady would bring out a bamboo tool - TENTSUKI and pass a jelly block through and out comes this beautiful jelly noodle.  Here is an exlanation from Wikipedia: 

Tokoroten (心太, ところてん) is a dish in Japanese cuisine made from agarophytes.

Then, a special TOKOROTEN sauce dresses it and it is served.  The interesting thing about it is that the taste to me is not wonderful or something I would really crave for, but it's like a hot summer without having a ice-cream cone.

I made a short cut and decided to boil this Potato Starch Noodles.  Then, I made the TOKOROTEN sauce, sprinkled some dry seaweed flakes. 

To make the vinegar sauce:
Combine 3 parts rice vinegar 
2 parts low sodium soy sauce.
1 part mirin - Japanese cooking wine.
               Sugar can be substituted for mirin in a pinch. 
Then, Slurp it goes.  Ahhh.... Really good.

Large Muffin Top Breakfast

To overcome some of the COVID-19 stay home and teleworking humdrum, I baked myself the large top muffins.


The original recipe name is Almond Crumb Top Muffins from my friend's aunt.   I made some modification to the ingredients.
Topping - Mix all of the followings together.
2/3 C Flour
2/3 C Brown Sugar
1 tsp Ceylon  Cinnamon
5 Tbsp butter, chilled, cut into small pieces
1/4 C Slivered Almonds 
1/4 C Raisins

Batter - Mix all of the followings together.  
Shift flour, baking powder, baking soda 3 times.  Add salt and mix well.
2-1/4 C Flour
2 Tbsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp salt

Mix the following well.   Beat egg and add sugar till foamy and pale.  Hand mix in milk, sour cream oil and zest. 
1 Egg
2/3 C Sugar
1/2 Milk
1/2 C Sour Cream
1/3 C Organic Avocado Oil
1 Tbsp Orange Zest.

Mix flour into egg mixture.
Preheat oven to 375'F - 400'F
Scoop batter equally onto large muffin top pan.  *If needed, coat with butter, than, flour to the mold.  Spread the topping on top of the muffin equally and bake for 10 min.  Check with tester.  If it comes out clean, it's done.

Freeze extras for another morning!