Sakura-mochi, Eastern Japanese Style

Sakura-mochi – it’s something that I wanted to make before the sakura season ends. And finally, I did it last weekend! It’s literally a traditional Japanese dessert for the sakura season, using a pickled sakura leave which is edible. There are two kinds of sakura-mochi – one is Kansai (Western Japanese) style and the other is Kanto (Eastern Japanese) style. I made the Kanto one as it’s actually much easier than that of Kansai.

Ingredients: 200g anko (sweet red bean paste  – please see this article for the recipe), 10 pickled sakura leaves, 10 pickled sakura blossoms (optional), 100g wheat flour (cake flour), 30g shiratamako (glutinous rice flour), 50g sugar, 200ml water.

Method:

  1. Soak pickled sakura leaves and blossoms in water to freshen. Then wipe off the moisture.
  2. Add wheat flour, shiratamako, sugar and water in a bowl and mix well.
  3. Heat a lightly oiled flying pan over low heat, pour 2 tbsp batter and spread it so it will become oval-shaped. Cook until heated and turn over, just like a crepe.
  4. Wrap anko with mochi and a sakura leave. Top with a sakura blossom if you like.

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Think About Ways to Support Kumamoto & Oita Hit by Powerful Earthquake

It’s about a week since a series of powerful earthquakes have started to affect Kumamoto and Oita prefectures in Kyush (Japan’s third largest island, located southwest of the main island Honshu). The first quake was with an intensity of 7 on the Japanese seven‐stage seismic scale.

Every time when big earthquakes hit Japan, I feel really useless and powerless. But I know the one thing, learning from the last earthquake – just do what I have to do and what I can do –  rather than being captured in pessimism.

The Japan Times posted a good summary of how to support.

So far, I’ve participated in ANA’s Mileage Donation program. The great thing about ANA’s initiative is that you can donate from 1 mile.

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Another small effort that I’m trying to make is to choose products from Kumamoto and Oita in daily life.

If you reside in Japan, you can find foods from these prefectures in supermarkets and department stores, not only in Ginza Kumamoto-kan introduced in the Japan Time’s article.