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Some questions about mochi!

TySpLo_eViL

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Hello all, i'm from singapore and new to these forums. For a short intro, i'm a singaporean music student majoring in trombone and have also studied japanese with a teacher for about a year or so.

So back to my question, about O-Mochi! Well we all know that mochi is a plain, sticky glutinuous rice (mochi-gome) confectionary, usually eaten outside of japan in the daifuku form.

However, i'd actually like to know more about one other form of mochi, called "Kiri-mochi" basically a square/rectangular block of mochi. At the largest local japanese supermarket (Isetan, some might know of this japanese company?) they are sold in huge 2 kg packs (pricey, slightly short of US$30) where they are vacuum sealed per mochi.

For those who have experience with kiri-mochi, do you need to soak these vacuum sealed packs of kiri-mochi prior to usage? Furthurmore, is kiri-mochi made the exact same way as the usual mochi in daifukus? Is it actually possible for me to make my own kiri-mochi? Thanks!
 

epigene

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Well we all know that mochi is a plain, sticky glutinuous rice (mochi-gome) confectionary, usually eaten outside of japan in the daifuku form.

The "original" mochi is the plain mochi. The sweets made with mochi, such as daifuku, "developed" from plain mochi. So, in Japan, the term "mochi" refers to the plain type

The "kiri-mochi" you mentioned is plain mochi (glutinous rice that has been pounded into a sticky blob) that has been hardened and cut into small rectangles. FYI, mochi is cut into rectangles in eastern Japan. People in western Japan prefer round mochi (maru-mochi).

Mochi is eaten in many ways. Freshly pound mochi is most delicious and is eaten with anko, grated radish and soy sauce, etc. When it cannot be eaten fresh, mochi is hardened for preservation.

Kiri-mochi is very often eaten toasted (until it starts cracking and puffing), sprinked with soy sauce and wrapped in nori. This is called "isobe-maki."

It can also be toasted, dipped briefly in hot water and coated with kinako (powdered soybean) and sugar to make "kinako-mochi."

During the New Year season, mochi is eaten as in "zouni," a soup with lots of vegetables and meat (chicken, fish, etc.). The type of soup, vegetables, meat used in this recipe vary by region in Japan.
This is an example:
Zouni recipe

For those who have experience with kiri-mochi, do you need to soak these vacuum sealed packs of kiri-mochi prior to usage? Furthurmore, is kiri-mochi made the exact same way as the usual mochi in daifukus? Is it actually possible for me to make my own kiri-mochi?
No need for soaking. Unwrap the mochi and toast. Also, unwrapped mochi can be soaked into water to restore it into its sticky form, warmed and eaten like fresh mochi--although this may be difficult to manage.

As I mentioned earlier, kiri-mochi is made from pounded rice. On the other hand, mochi for daifuku is made from glutinous mochi rice that has been grounded and manufactured in special processes into joshin-ko, shiratama-ko and other rice powders.

To made kiri-mochi yourself, you need a large mortar and pestle. Steam glutinous rice and pound in the mortar, pestle and hand (all kept constantly wet) while hot until the grainy look is gone and the blob is smooth. This is a tough job (therefore many use store-bought mochi), but homemade is the best way to eat mochi.

Hope this helps! 🙂
 

Ashikaga

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I adore Mochi. On those mornings when I don't feel like getting up early and cook rice for breakfast, I would just microwave or pan-fry a couple of blocks of mochi and eat them with some soy sauce and dried Nori.

Another good way to enjoy Mochi is deep-frying it. You take a piece of mochi and cut it into small cubes, then deep fry them until they puff up and turn golden-color. Drain off the excess oil on a sheet of paper towel and splash the mochi with soy sause (and some hot pepper powder if you like 'em spicy like I do). Done right, they are crunchy on the outside and soft and chewy inside. Deeeeeeeeelicious.
 
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