Mochi is one of the most popular Japanese snacks out there, and for good reason! It’s a deliciously sweet treat that practically melts in your mouth and has the same soft consistency as a cloud! (Okay, that one might be an exaggeration). If you’re new to the world of mochi, keep reading on to learn how the tasty treat is made, the different types of mochi, and more.
What is Mochi?
Before we can learn about the history of the snack, we need to answer one key question first: what is mochi? Mochi is a Japanese rice cake made of a short-grain japonica glutinous rice, as well as the occasional additional ingredient such as water, sugar, and cornstarch. To make mochi, the rice is pounded into its famous round shape during a traditional Japanese ceremony called mochitsuki.
Though it's unclear when mochi was first discovered, the process of steaming glutinous rice to create a paste was presumably brought to Japan from Southeast Asia at the end of Jomon period (14,000-300 BC). Its Chinese origins does not make mochi any less culturally significant in Japan; across centuries, mochi has played an important role in Japanese culture, like when mochi was used in Shinto events to celebrate marriage and childbirth during the Heian period (794-1185), or how the treat is so tied to Japanese New Year traditions in today’s world.
Different Types of Mochi
There are a couple variations of mochi, including daifuku, dango, and butter mochi. Daifuku is a thicker mochi that often contains an especially sweet filling, like a strawberry or even pudding! Dango, on the other hand, is a Japanese dumpling made from rice flour mixed with glutinous rice flour and uruchi rice that is prepared with a different mochi making method; instead of being consumed as a finger food, three to five round-shaped dango are served on a skewer. Meanwhile, butter mochi is a Hawaiian dish that has been described as a cross between cake and mochi. Unlike the other mochis, butter mochi is usually cut into square pieces, but it is made with the same rice flour as regular mochi.
Now that you’ve been given the rundown of this beloved bite’s history, how it’s made, and all the different types of mochi, it’s time to learn about the mochi we have available at the Bokksu Boutique. When it comes to regular mochi, fruit lovers are guaranteed to enjoy the Fujiya Nectar Peach Mochi, which features a peach jelly filling wrapped around a thin layer of marshmallow and chewy peach-flavored mochi. This peachy keen treat is filled with the flavors of Fujiya’s Nectar Peach Juice, which is known for using real peach purée, so you know it’s good.
Or you can opt for an even lighter bite with the Funwari Meijin Mochi Puffs: Hokkaido Milk mochi. These delectable delights feels like a cloud on your tongue, thanks to its ingredients of Japanese mochi rice and Hokkaido milk, but also features an unexpectedly crunchy exterior for added texture.
As for daifuku, Bokksu Boutique sells several products worth trying, including the Pudding Daifuku Mochi and Matcha Chocolate Daifuku Mochi. The Pudding variety daifuku is made with a smooth pudding cream filling and a chewy mochi and caramel marshmallow outer layer, and the Matcha daifuku is prepared with kneaded matcha powder-infused dough wrapped around a dreamy white chocolate cream filling.
Next up, our dango options range from crystal covered creations to soy sauce-inspired snacks. Each colorful dango in the Mocchan Dango Mochi pack is covered in sugar crystals and boasts that classic chewy texture that is so synonymous with a mochi treat. Conversely, the Mitarashi Dango Mochi puts a savory spin on the snack with its sweet soy sauce glaze filling and its grilled skewer preparation style. Lastly, we also sell a totally unique form of mochi: the Sakura Warabi Mochi. Maker Bunnosuke Chaya has prepared this jelly mochi in honor of Japan’s famed sakura season by adding sakura petals and white bean paste to the warabi mochi for a wonderfully light, sweet, fragrant, and chewy treat.
Ready to try some for yourself? Make sure to stop by the Bokksu Boutique and pick up these or any other Japanese sweets to get your fill today.
By Jillian Giandurco