Sweet Potato Mochi

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After a long hiatus, I am back!

With it officially fall, I wanted to try making something with sweet potato. However, instead of going the more traditional route with warm spices like cinnamon, I wanted to give the sweet potato a little Asian treatment.

While I am sure that there is a more traditional approach on how to make these little rice cakes, I went with what I was familiar with. I wanted something with great texture, think gooey-chewy, with a little sweetness. Lately, I have been reducing the amount of sugar in my diet, so I wanted something that didn’t need much help in that department. Because sweet potatoes are cheap and last long in my pantry, I thought this recipe would be an awesome treat that could be made quickly and easily. (It also helps that these can be made entirely in the microwave – a girl has to have a repertoire of quick midnight snacks that aren’t just minute mug cakes.)

Now on to the recipe!

Ingredients

  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and chopped into 1 inch sized chunks
  • 1/2 cup sugar (you can add more to taste)
  • 1 cup mochiko rice flour
  • 1 cup water, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup corn starch or potato starch

Step 1: Place the sweet potato in a microwave-safe bowl, wrap with plastic wrap, and then cook on high until soft (about 4 min). Place cooked sweet potato in food processor (or mash with a fork vigorously) with the sugar. Grind into a smooth paste.

(Optional step: for a denser filling, pour the sweet potato paste into a saucepan and heat the mixture on medium to remove excess water. Boil while stirring vigorously until you achieve your desired consistency.)

Step 2: Let the potato cool down fully and then roll into 1 inch-sized balls. Cover with plastic wrap.

Step 3: In another bowl, pour and mix the water into the rice flour in increments. This will prevent you from creating lumps. When everything is fully combined, cover the bowl in plastic wrap, and microwave for one minute.

Step 4: When the rice flour mixture is fully cooked, it will be elastic and translucent. Using a mixing spoon, stir the dough to give it more elasticity. You want to have a strong arm with this and pound it for at least a minute. Then, while the mix is still warm and pliable, scrape the bowl and transfer the dough onto a corn starch dusted cutting board.

Step 5: Cut the dough into an equal amount of pieces to the sweet potato. (You will yield around 10 pieces.) Dust each piece with corn starch and then keep any unused dough covered with plastic wrap as the it dries out easily.

Step 6: Take one of the pieces and dust off any excess corn starch. Using your fingers, pinch and pull the dough until it is just shy of the size of your palm. Place a sweet potato ball in the middle. Pull at the corners of the rice dough and start to push the dough around the ball until everything is fully covered. Pinch the dough ends together to create a seam.

Step 7: When the mochi ball is fully sealed, flip it over, and shape it nicely with your hands so it is even and round. Cover with plastic wrap and then repeat step 6 until you have completed the batch. Store in an airtight container.

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