July 8, 2014

matcha mochi yogurt pops

on monday i proudly posted to instagram ...

matcha mochi yogurt pops
i made mochi!

posting that was much easier than the actual making of the mochi. what began as a lark to make some popsicles i saw on pintrest turned into a half day scavenger hunt around santa monica.

due to my over estimating the frequency of use when i ordered the pouch of matcha, i currently have it in abundance. while searching pintrest for recipes i found this lovely bloggers post for matcha mochi yogurt pops. looked simple enough and i already had all the ingredients, except for the mochi bits.

but how hard could it be to get mochi bits? i mean, they're a basic topping at every pinkberry, yogurtland and menchies, which socal has more of than starbucks. there's also 3 different healthy groceries within a 1.5 mile radius of my apt, surely one of them would have it. worst case, i knew i'd seen an asian market somewhere close that would definitely have it in stock.

ha! the next 2 hours went something like this: trader joe's only had mochi ice cream, whole foods used to carry blocks of it but now they only stock ice cream, bristol farms had no idea what i was talking about. so off to marukai market i went. this was my first trip to an asian market and won't be my last, i'm about to be lousy with chop sticks featuring anime. but back to the mochi.

either they were all out or just wanted to get a good laugh b/c upon asking i was directed to the baking aisle where the sweet rice flour used to make mochi from scratch was. umm, ok, the instructions looked pretty straight forward. several minutes of googleing and blogger skimming later i decided i could probably handle the task. here's how it went down:

first the mochi

mochi yogurt pops
looks simple enough

(i'd like to point out i went to a japanese grocer only to come home with a product made in california.)

not wanting to drown in mochi bits, i basically halved the recipe on the box.

1 cup sweet rice flour
1 cup sugar
1.5 and 1/2 cup water

the box called for 1 cup sugar and i was going to halve that but after skimming several blogs, i left the full cup in to keep it sweet. next time, i'll use less and see if it helps with the stickiness that will soon follow.

mochi yogurt pops

combine sugar and 1/2 cup of water in a pan over medium heat, stir until dissolved.

mochi yogurt pops

in a microwave safe bowl (larger than this one) mix sweet rice flour and 1.5 cup water. i didn't realize my mixing bowls aren't microwave safe so i used a soup bowl, just barely worked.

mochi yogurt pops

cover and microwave on high for 5 minutes, it should look like hot, sticky paste when it's done.

mochi yogurt pops

combine the paste with the sugar water, it looks weird but just keep stirring.

mochi yogurt pops

once it's smooth, pour onto a baking sheet lined with wax paper (or a silpat if you're smarter than me) and cover in corn starch. really covered, like a new york city blizzard covered.

mochi yogurt pops
not covered enough

mochi yogurt pops
pour in a thicker, smaller layer

mochi yogurt pops
cover with cornstarch

the baking sheet i used was 10x15, you don't need one this big. use the smaller one and make a thicker layer, it'll be easier to work with.

while all the recipes said to "let it cool" i say let it chill. stick it in the fridge for a few hours. take some time to watch a movie, clean the house, realize there's a crack in your iphone camera lens, freak out  high tail it to the apple store and get a new phone (all hail apple care). nope, that speck of dirt in the mixing bowl pics isn't dirt, it's a crack.

once it's chilled, remove from pan but keep the wax paper and place on a cutting board.

mochi yogurt pops
i dusted the top layer of corn starch into the bowl

mochi yogurt pops
cut into squares
mochi yogurt pops
cut those squares into smaller pieces

sadly there is no picture of the mess of trying to pull these pieces apart. sticky, covered fingers with a new phone and all. the thinner pieces on the outer edge were wasted. the pieces at the center were about 1/4 inch thick, next time i'd go closer to 1/2 inch, easier to handle. i put the smaller pieces in the mesh strainer and tossed them with cornstarch to coat the edges. these bits are like duck tape, you get two sticky sides to touch and they're never coming apart. there was cornstarch everywhere.

fun right? totally exhausted yes? you forgot we're making popsicles didn't you. haha, sucker!

the yogurt part required many more ingredients, so it was of course much simpler.

matcha mochi yogurt pops

2 cups plain yogurt
2 tb honey
2 tsp matcha powder
pinch of salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 cup mochi bits

matcha mochi yogurt pops
mix together everything but the mochi bits

matcha mochi yogurt pops
fold in the mochi pits

matcha mochi yogurt pops
spoon into popsicle molds and freeze

matcha mochi yogurt pops

i think these were in the freezer for a good 3 hours to get firm. not as green as the original blogger, but still tangy and delicious. side note: these are the worst popsicle molds ever, i'd somehow forgotten the disaster that was the kool aid/bacardi pops of summer 2006.

so there you have it, my adventure in mochi. try it if you like, learn from my mistakes and if you can, order bits from amazon.

***update: you may have noticed it's a box of maca, not matcha in the photo. i did indeed use matcha, i just forgot to retake the photo **

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