Lemon snow-flake mochi and mochinnamon bun

Snow-ball ? Hedgehog ? Lawn ?

Well this is my version of a wagashi (Japanese sweet) popular in this season in Kansai. I don’t know the name – so many varieties exist, not all are named. It’s often yuzu-mochi. Usually it’s flavored with yuzu citrus.
Mine is made with Meyer lemon. So “lemon snow-flake mochi” ?

Mine look really gross compared to what the artisans make. BUT, it tastes much better than the supermarket version. And I know how to improve it in the future.

See the shop version here :

To obtain those refreshing “Summer mochi” texture, 3 types of flour are used :
1. sticky rice starch
2. warabi (bracken)
3. kuzu (arrow root)
Or a combination.
There are slight differences of texture.
The first gives something more like a paste, solid, easy to shape by hand, not transparent. It’s not melty unless you add lots of syrup.
The kuzu more like a melty jelly, very transparent. It’s not possible to shape it, you need a mold.
The warabi… in between. I’d say it’s the easier to use for a beginner, well for me.

Ingredients for 8 pieces :

An organic lemon
50 g of warabi mochi flour (it’s bracken flour, in case your grocer doesn’t speak Japanese)

A small piece of mochi
Sugar to taste (I used lakanto sugar)

Grate the mochi.
Grate the zest of the lemon, press it to get the juice. Complete with water to make 200 ml of liquid.
In a sauce pan, combine the juice and the flour. Heat moderately and stir continuously with a wooden spatula, until you get a semi-transparent paste. Add sugar in the quantity you like.
Pour in 2 soft molds. Cover with half of the grated mochi. Let cool, refrigerate a little.

Funny : when I refrigerated the threads of mochi went up like that :

Then turn down on a plate, get off the mold, cut each in 4 pieces, cover top with the reste of grated mochi. Refrigerate a little.

Note :
In shops, they use “short flakes” of mochi, it’s nicer, less “hairy” more flaky. After grating the mochi, you should let it dry, maybe a whole day. Then you can easily crush the threads. I had not the patience.
Commercial shape is often square. But that doesn’t matter. Taste was perfect for me.

Wagashi are served with tea : sencha, matcha, genmai cha, iced mugi cha (roast wheat decoction), iced sencha, etc… I had iced durian green tea (yeah, I’m weird).
Wagashi can usually be cut and eaten with a wooden stick… well it is sometimes made of plastic.
This warabi mochi doesn’t become hard, it’s… well, try it. The warabi mochi texture is refreshing and appreciated in Summer.

1 small piece :
Cal 40 F0g C8g P0.2g

Mochinnamon bun

You have mochi left ?



Toppings are kurozato brown sugar, sesame, cocoa mass.
Bake 5 minutes in oven-toaster (under grill, broiler). Ideally, you add the cocoa after 4 minutes, it looks better. Again I was lazy.
Then sprinkle tons of Ceylon cinnamon. Eat hot with your coffee.

OK, it looks weird, but it’s delicious. Parts are crispy, others are like chewing-gum…

Wagashi Saga : Photo-menu of all Japanese sweet posts.

15 thoughts on “Lemon snow-flake mochi and mochinnamon bun

  1. oh thank you thank you thank you! I have always wondered how to make mochi. Complete misunderstanding of this wonderful food. I had been presuming these are rice balls, had no idea that it was a block of hardened gel like substance. Thanks so much for the detailed instructions. This was a great tutorial!

    • Hi Shree,
      “Mochi” is a generic word that has different meaning. The more general one is that white square you see in the middle. It is made of “mochi-gome”, which means sticky-rice, it’s sticky rice paste, that can be soft or hard. You can buy already made blocks in most Asian grocery shops, particularly in New Year season. Those blocks are hard as a block of soap, so they need preparation to be eaten. Come again soon, I’ll try to post about how they make it.

      The second meaning, is a short for “mochi-gashi”, cakes made of sticky rice paste as main component. For instance “daifuku mochi”, stuffed with azuki beans. There are gazillion sorts of cakes, 100 times gadzillion recipes and many use rice flour actually.
      What can become confusing -or due to my lame translation- is “warabi mochi”, “daikon mochi” as they are made of another ingredient (bracken, daikon radish…) and called mochi only because of ressembling shape.

  2. This is utterly interesting. I love mochi balls but have never seen something so cute like these…like little white porcupines. Thanks very much for sharing.

    • I have to confess I had never seen that myself either as they differ *slightly* from the shop version I tried to recreate. LOL I can’t find a photo online, so I’ll make one.

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