Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Green Tea Mochi Ice Cream – Is This Even Close?

What’s my favorite kind of recipe to post on Food Wishes? Any recipe that I’ve never tried before, and this green tea mochi ice cream is a perfect example. In the kitchen, there’s nothing quite like the thrill of having no idea what you’re doing.

I’ve had it many times in restaurants, and have always been fascinated by its unique combination of taste and texture, but I had absolutely no clue how it was done. I basically still don't, but regardless, this was my first attempt and I look forward to lots of criticism.

I probably should've done a little more research, but I glanced at a few recipes, and decided to just go for it. Remember, these early experiments can yield a lot of great experience, especially if it’s a totally failure. Happily, this wasn’t. All in all, I think it came out very well.

I went with green tea flavored mochi, and while I usually see it paired with green tea ice cream, I decided to go with plain vanilla, and really enjoyed how the subtle, aromatic bitterness of the tea plays off the sweetness of the ice cream.

By the way, if you don't use the glutinous rice flour this will not work. You can’t substitute regular rice flour, as it doesn't produce the same texture, or so I'm told. Anyway, let me know how I did, or more likely didn’t do; and I really hope you give it a try soon. Enjoy!

UPDATE: Apparently the reason they use corn and potato starch when shaping is that raw rice flour has more of a bitter flavor. Must have brushed off most of mine, since I didn't really notice an off flavor, but I will be using the other starches next time. Thanks for everyone's input!  

Ingredients for about 10 Green Tea Mochi Ice Cream Balls:
(I did 8, but there is enough to make a few more)
1/2 cup glutinous rice flour
pinch salt
1/2 cup cold water
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp green tea powder (matcha)
10 small scoops ice cream of your choice (about 1 1/2 cups worth)


SteveBass said...

Loved the video. My daughter said that the cat actually originated from China and it is called a meniki neku. She said that the cat isn't pumping his fist, but scratching the back of his ear, which apparently is a sign for good luck. Enuf! I like the pumping fist!! lol. AND AS ALWAYS....NJOY!

Rosa said...

That looks so delicious!

The way I understand it, if you use lumpy glutinous rice flour (shiratamako), you need to mix with water first and then add the sugar otherwise you can't mix the lumps out. (Maybe, never thought to do it the other way!)

Ochikeron on youtube has a good yukimi daifuku mochi tutorial, too, using strangely (to Americans) flavored ice creams like rose, tomato, and carrot.

inchrisin said...

Great exploratory recipe, John! Thank you.

As per the mochi I've had, from a supermarket, or Midwestern sushi restaurant, they are like other Americanized Asian food--ONE-BIG BITE-SIZED. I think you're ice cream is excessive, but that can't be a bad thing. :)

Jenny said...

Is there a reason for wrapping the bowl with plastic wrap when microwaving? Would it be okay to not wrap the bowl (I have a thing against using plastic wrap in the microwave)?
Also, what other flavors would be viable for the mochi dough and how would I achieve it?

GianLuca Kasai said...

jenny- when you microwave without plastic there is a weird skin forming on top, chef john traditionally it's pronounced omochi

Chef John said...

Thanks! I also think the plastic holds in the steam, but you can prob use a plate instead.

SpeedRacer105 said...

Does glutinous rice flour have a flour taste when uncooked like regular flour? Perhaps that's why others use corn starch. Or perhaps because confectioners use corn starch?

HL said...

When I went to Japan last month, those cat dolls are pretty common in stores. The fist-bumping has meaning too. Right paw up is to beckon money; left paw up is to beckon people. Both paws up is to beckon people (customers) with money.


Hilarious! I never intend to try to make Mochi - just not my thing; but thanks for the interesting post. I love to laugh. Ha. Ha. Ha.

Jeremie James said...

You add the "o" to "mochi" as a sign of respect. It's highly regarded. So i guess it depends on how it turns out that determines if you call it mochi or omochi : )


Seems like a unique dessert. I have no idea what this is, but I'm going to assume you did an awesome job, (Since you're chef John)!

Gerry Graham said...

Pretty sure this is the strangest recipe I've ever seen on Food Wishes. Gonna trust you on this one. Lol!

Kikit K said...

Wuuutt mochi ice cream is not strange at all in asia..here in my country they sell mochi ice cream for almost 2 dollar each, and its really small. Gotta make this soon! And probably sell it lol thank you chef john!

Michele Leslie said...

Hi! Moderately long-time follower, lover of cooking and food, and mochi and all things Asian-cuisine!

Mochi is traditionally a substance achieved by pounding steamed rice in a mortar and pestle-like process. Usually fresh mochi is made for New Year's and is exchanged for gifts and I personally enjoy fresh from the mortal while it's still steaming!

This method is super convenient because it takes out the pounding process and is as simple as making pancake batter. You can add any flavors you like, or keep it plain! My preference is ANY fruit flavor, including mango.

You can also fill it with anything as well! Jellies, jams, syrups (messy!), fruit, and recently popular - ice cream.

I personally do not know why corn/potato starches are used to de-stickify the mochi. My guess would be that the starches are much cheaper and easier to process than glutinous rice flour, as well as possibly saving the rice flour for more mochi!

I love Japanese cuisine, and really any cuisine to be honest. I have been self-studying the methods of Japanese cooking (and other aspects of their culture.) for a few years now, so I hold a lot more admiration towards such things as mochi-making.

I love your videos and blog posts, I can't wait for more! Thank you!!

Cat Ami said...

I've been living in Japan for about 4 years and have run across Mochi with ice cream maybe once or twice...it seems it's way easier to find in the US. I can't believe you actually made it! It's pretty rare here. Usually, mochi like this is stuff with azuki bean paste which is pretty sweet... at first I couldn't understand the bizarre sweet bean taste (since we don't sweeten beans too much in the US) but I have come to understand that they over-sweeten everything as it pairs well with the bitter taste of green tea.

Chef John, I highly suggest trying dango. It's grilled mochi balls with a sweet brown sauce usually served like a kebab. Not only is a fun to say (da-n-go), it's totally like crack!

Tony Arra said...

I couldn't get this to work at all :( the mixture was totally liquid instead of thick, and by the time I took it out of the microwave, there was almost no dough. It didn't flatten out even when still piping hot, and it ripped when trying to wrap the ice cream balls.

Francesco said...

I'm sooo disappointed, it's simply not working for me. I'm using all the right ingredients -- and green tea powder is frightfully expensive! -- and it looks fine until the rolling out stage. It simply refuses to flatten, and winds up sticking mercilessly to my nonstick rolling pins. I've tried three times now, so I know when to give up.

Chef John said...

Are you using tons of cornstarch (or rice flour like I did) to prevent it from sticking? You need a lot.

Davis Sayoko said...

Hi I am Japanese.I try your recipe all the time.my mother always makes mochi when I was young. I miss them a lot. You must try red bean azuki paste filling or Isobe maki mochi.

Francesco said...

Luckily no shortage of mochiko flour, so I gave it another go. This time I scooped instead of poured, and the raw mixture was thicker. I also reduced the time in the nuker by about thirty seconds. It was definitely easier to work the goo. In the end, not a bad first try. I had to eat a couple of the deformed (torn or leaking) mochis, as any good cook should, but the seven that survived don't look bad! The real test wll come tomorrow when the wife gets to try green tea mochi ice cream for the first time! Thanks again for another great idea and fun video.

Catherine Di Cesare said...

My boyfriend made this using a Melon-flavoured Matcha I have, and it turned out fantastic!