Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Vanilla Bean Mochi Cake: My obsessive personality

For those who support me during my mochi craze

AGAIN?  That's what I heard this morning when I told someone I was going to make a mochi cake.  I had a good reason to however, as good friend LKL was coming over for lunch and had yet to try the cake.  I wanted to treat her to something yummy along with her lunch of Asian Pasta Salad and Curried Chicken Salad.  I figured a dessert that bridged both Asian and Western culture would be appropriate.  Thus Mochi cake it was.

Only, the other part of my personality is that I get fixated on certain things and can't let it go.  Right now, I have MMS...Mochi Madness Syndrome.  I can't let the concept go.  A year ago or so, I was obsessed with cupcakes and frantically began researching all these different cupcake recipes because I couldn't let it go.  This is no different.  I am curious about changing sugar amounts, trying to reduce fat and my all time favorite, adding vanilla bean to anything that that has a pretty white background so that you can see flecks of vanilla.  I thought I'd take the first Mochi Cake recipe I did last week and change it up.

The result - another really yummy cake, only with less sugar and less fat.  It does feel lighter somehow and less rich, and the vanilla bean was a lovely subtle flavor mixed in with the coconut.  It was a hit with Friend with  LKL, who was excited to take it home to her husband.   And I was pretty excited because it was another fun stop on the road of my obsession.

Quick Vanilla Bean Tutorial 
Please excuse the photographs, as I had to shoot with my left hand while my right hand tried to demonstrate.  Hopefully you'll get a sense of what you need to do.

Carefully cut down the center of your whole vanilla bean and split it into two parts.

Starting at one end, with the back of your knife (not sharp side), scrape along the length of the vanilla bean.

You will have a knife tip covered with tiny gooey black dots.

Add vanilla bean goo to batter and repeat on the other half of the bean.
Vanilla Bean Mochi Cake
adapted from Gourmet Magazine | May 2005
Makes one 9X13 pan, or 24 squares

1 lb box of mochiko flour (3 cups equivalent)
2 cups of sugar
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 14 oz can regular coconut milk
1 14 oz can light coconut milk (readily found at Trader Joes)
5 large eggs
1/2 stick of butter (1/4 cup of butter) melted and slightly cooled
1 whole vanilla bean, split in half and beans scraped out

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9X13 baking pan.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together mochiko flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.

In a separate bowl or large measuring cup (4 cup capacity), beat eggs, then add coconut milk, melted butter and vanilla bean.

Carefully pour the wet ingredients over the mochiko flour mixture and whisk until mixture is smooth and uniform in texture.

Pour batter into greased 9X13 pan. Carefully smooth out the top.

Bake for 90 minutes, until top is golden brown and the cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan.

Allow cake to cool for about 30 minutes on a rack, and then carefully flip it out and cut into 24 squares, or the size of your choice. Can store mochi cake for three days, covered.

Printable recipe

A beautiful tower of mochi cake

I love these beans and this company has excellent customer service and great product.


Anonymous said...

!!! thank you for this!!! it was killing me to feed the 2 sticks of butter version to my husband. i'm def going to try this and have it be the batter with which i make the blueberry and other mochi cakes as well.

Anonymous said...

*though coconut milk has a ridiculous amount of saturated fat as well, at least it's plant fat and not animal....

The Food Librarian said...

Looks yummy! I have the same mochi addiction. - mary the food librarian

The Urban Baker said...

I love mochi. this cake looks so light and delicious!

Nessie said...

Oh wow, I have never heard of mochi cake before...I am intrigued! Is the texture kinda like leen goh (chinese new year cake)? :)

Joyce said...

Yum! They look great. You should stop by my blog because I have something for you that you might enjoy. :D See you soon!

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Patty said...

i first met the vanilla mochi cake this past weekend ... and it was like tasting a little piece of heaven.

the green tea flavor is pretty darn good too ... :D


Joy said...

I heard the word again all the time :D I think I am at the point that no one at my house will eat anything I make :D That cake looks great!

jenny+3 said...

This one rocks. I love vanilla bean and the combo with the crunchy top and the mochi goodness in the middle was pure heaven. I threw out all good manners and took more than my share this past weekend. Do you ship? I'll take one every other week...

Y said...

Oh I hear you on mochi cake obsessions - after I made my first one, I must've made another three more in quick succession. They're ridiculously easy to make and so adaptable when it comes to flavourings.

Bethie said...

YUM!! I have a box of mochi flour to use AND the beans. I made the blueberry version before and it was great. Yours looks even better!

Anonymous said...

I added the vanilla bean in with my dry ingredients- I think that helps "disperse" the bean specks more evenly.

Sandy Chang said...

I love your mochi recipes, thanks so much for posting the many versions for them. Just a note about the light coconut milk... I discovered this myself not too long ago. I used to use Trader Joe's light coconut milk too, the ingredients are water and coconut milk. They basically dilute it in half, so why not just buy a full fat can and use the other half for something else!

olsonsfoodemporium said...

Thank you for your post, pretty helpful material.

alena said...

Has anyone tried making this without the sugar or at least with much less sugar (1/2 cup at most)?

Joanne Choi said...

Aleana -

I've heard of people going down to 1 1/4 cup. It does sound like a lot of sugar I know, but if you think about how cupcakes and cakes start with the sugar in the cake and add in the sugar in the frosting, you're not too bad off.

If you want a more traditional mochi recipe, this is not it.

alena said...

Thanks! I am not opposed to sugar. Just doing a elimination diet right now and have been looking at cake recipes I can alter to fit my plan! I might save this one for after I'm done. It does sound delicious.


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