• Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
torakris

Japanese foods--Wagashi

250 posts in this topic

Konny wagashi URL

Now that's the real thing! I checked out shiro-an, and yes, there it is in the same hairsplitting detail that I recall from when I used to make it myself.

Nerikiri...interesting that they are popular in Nagoya - definitely saw more of them in Osaka and especially Kyoto than I ever do in Tokyo.

Must teach the kids how to make tsubu-an at least - that should be enough to satisfy basic expat cravings if they ever live out of Japan!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've made koshi-an various ways...the recipe for shiro-an (white lima-bean an) on the Konny site that Torakris found is an excellent guide to producing very fine koshi-an if you use azuki instead of lima beans.

Konny's perfect White Koshi-an

However, don't worry about rubbing the skins off by hand for koshi-an.

This is how I do it (proportions to taste - the less sugar you use, the lighter color and more floury/grainy texture you will have, and you will also need to freeze it to keep it for long):

Soak beans, cook over gentle heat until soft, draining off and replacing water 2-3 times. Drop a piece of greaseproof paper onto the surface if you are really determined to prevent any hard beans...but this is not likely to be a problem with small amounts and shorter cooking time.

When beans are soft but not burst, drain, and mash roughly. Now rub through a sieve. I haven't had good results with a food processor (and I did try it!) but if you have a very powerful one you may be able to get a very smooth an without flecks of skin in it. A metal sieve works OK, but a horsehair sieve and a flat wooden rice spatula is best - no chance of getting bits of tough bean skin in the final an.

The skins are discarded, and the seived bean starch is EITHER transferred to a pot and cooked (koshi-an) OR allowed to soak in cold water then water is gently tipped off, and bean paste is drained through a cloth before being transferred to a pot, etc. This extra step produces "sarashi-an" (bleached or refined an).

Stir bean paste and sugar over gentle-moderate heat until enough moisture has evaporated that you can pull a wooden spoon through the mix and leave a clear trail on the bottom of the pot - the "walls" of bean paste don't immediately collapse together behind the spoon. The paste will thicken somewhat as it cools anyway, so don't try to make it really stiff.

Now put dollops of paste onto a tray to cool, and fan to cool quickly (helps maintain good color).

Chinese bean jam is cooked slightly differently, and sometimes contains oil.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

wow--

thanks helenjp, torakris, and others for your amazingly detailed, complete resources/recipes. i'm trying this cake this weekend, so will post back. can't wait! :wub:


"The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears, or the ocean."

--Isak Dinesen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi guys

I had a lovely cream mitsumame last night :laugh: just right for the end of summer.

The restaurants in my area don't do many japanese desserts

and i want to know whats other japanese summer time desserts are popular?

pictures and recipes would also be welcome :biggrin:


"so tell me how do you bone a chicken?"

"tastes so good makes you want to slap your mamma!!"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In Japan none of these would really be considered desserts as the Japanese don't really eat dessert except for possibly a nice piece of fruit. Most of the foods discussed in this thread would be more of snacks.

I recently had an incredible dessert/snack at Monsoon Cafe a South east Asian restaurant, it was a cold shiruko (normally made with soupy red beans and some kind of mochi) with kabocha and coconut milk with little balls of mochi and a large spoonful a thick azuki paste, it was wonderful and really hit the spot on that hot day.

Wish I had taken my camera... :angry:


<p><strong>Kristin Wagner</strong>, aka "torakris"

Manager, Membership

<a class="bbc_email" href="mailto:kwagner@egstaff.org" title="E-mail Link">kwagner@egstaff.org</a></p>

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

torkris

you know the mitsumame jelly how is it made?

i came across a recipe for it online

but too me it looks too simple :smile:

jello: 1/2 stick agar-agar (kanten) / 6 tbsp sugar / 1 tsp lemon juice

ifit is that simple might go out and buy a bag of kanten tomorrow


"so tell me how do you bone a chicken?"

"tastes so good makes you want to slap your mamma!!"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am assuming there is water in there too....

Yes it really that simple, though I have never made it myself......

I really like the kuro (black) mitsumame that is made with brown sugar instead of white....


<p><strong>Kristin Wagner</strong>, aka "torakris"

Manager, Membership

<a class="bbc_email" href="mailto:kwagner@egstaff.org" title="E-mail Link">kwagner@egstaff.org</a></p>

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I need one clarification, origamicrane. Agar-agar is NOT kanten. Do you mean you can buy kanten in your area?

My father comes from Nagano prefecture, an ideal place for making kanten, and I used to eat it a lot as a child. My mother did not add sugar or lemon juice.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As far as I know kanten is referred to in English as agar agar.

from the internet:

ちなみに、寒天は英語ではアガー(agar)ですが、語源はマレー語のアガーアガー(agar-agar)、19世紀にはじめて英語の辞書に登場したといわれます。

http://www.housefoods.co.jp/openhouse/pepm...ook/ireland.htm

translation:

In English kanten is called agar, the origins of the word is actually from the Malaysian agar agar and in the 19th century it started to turn up in English dictionaries.

Also more on kanten (agar agar) with pictures of it in the original seaweed form:

http://www.net-report.jp/sorui/z_danwa/kaisou05_kanten.html


<p><strong>Kristin Wagner</strong>, aka "torakris"

Manager, Membership

<a class="bbc_email" href="mailto:kwagner@egstaff.org" title="E-mail Link">kwagner@egstaff.org</a></p>

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think kanten can be confusing because it can be used to refer to different things. It can be used to refer to the powder or sheets of the seaweed derived gelatin like substance used for making youkan, tokoroten and the jelly like cubes used in dishes like mitsumame that also can go by the name kanten.


<p><strong>Kristin Wagner</strong>, aka "torakris"

Manager, Membership

<a class="bbc_email" href="mailto:kwagner@egstaff.org" title="E-mail Link">kwagner@egstaff.org</a></p>

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Kanten and agar-agar are made from different types of seaweeds.

Kanten: Tengusa and ogonori

Agar-agar: Suginori and minomata

Source (Japanese only):

http://www.kantenpp.co.jp/info/faq01.php?faq_catcode=6

See under Q09.

Kanten is made by purifying tokoroten by exposing it to the cold.

Me ga ten library (Japanese only):

http://www.ntv.co.jp/megaten/library/date/03/02/0202.html

See also:

http://www.cuoca.com/library/contents/cont..._gyoukozai.html

This site discusses the difference in texture between gelatin, kanten, and agar-agar.

I, for one, like the hard texture of kanten.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

sorry, can't let this rest yet. :biggrin:

this link http://seaweed.ucg.ie/SeaweedUsesGeneral/Agars.html

says (Japanese names are my addition):

The best quality agar is extracted from species of the red algal genera Pterocladia (OBAKUSA) and Gelidium (TENGUSA), which are harvested by hand from natural populations in Spain, Portugal, Morocco, the Azores, California, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa, India, Chile, and Japan. Agars of lesser quality are extracted from Gracilaria (OGONORI) and Hypnea (IBARANORI) species.

After doing a lot of research on the internet it seems to boil down to different and/or general names to describe the same thing. In the US where the main use of agar is as a lab culture substrate a general name for all of the various seaweeds serves its purpose while in Japan where it is prized for its food applications it is broken down into different types with slightly different qualities.


<p><strong>Kristin Wagner</strong>, aka "torakris"

Manager, Membership

<a class="bbc_email" href="mailto:kwagner@egstaff.org" title="E-mail Link">kwagner@egstaff.org</a></p>

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hm...

But I still insist that I do not want agar-agar cubes in my mitsumame...

You know the texture... That's the whole point of kanten.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hm...

But I still insist that I do not want agar-agar cubes in my mitsumame...

You know the texture...  That's the whole point of kanten.

actually I am with you on this! :biggrin: I personally don't care for those hard cubes and I would take a hot fudge sundae over mitsumame anyday.....


<p><strong>Kristin Wagner</strong>, aka "torakris"

Manager, Membership

<a class="bbc_email" href="mailto:kwagner@egstaff.org" title="E-mail Link">kwagner@egstaff.org</a></p>

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My first husband wrote an entire thesis on the physical properties of agar gels :laugh:

Origamicrane, if you can't buy Japanese style kanten in shops (either in ultralight dried "blocks" or as a powder), you should be able to buy the Chinese version - it comes in thin sticks or ropes in a plastic bag, looks like very thick beanthread vermicelli if you're not looking closely. Used exactly the same way.

I like kanten in mitsumame, but I don't like those strange salad-type things suspended in kanten...is it a Japanese version of US jellied salads, maybe??

Kanten will set and remain set at room temperature, but the gel will slowly lose water as time passes, making the jelly floppier and "weepy", so it's best to use it within a day, or two-three days at most.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

sold in los angeles, california

<center><img src="http://www.rawbw.com/~coconut/eg/04/040915agar1.jpg"> <img src="http://www.rawbw.com/~coconut/eg/04/040915agar2.jpg"></center>

the red kanten happened to have the ingredients listed on the front:

<center><img src="http://www.rawbw.com/~coconut/eg/04/040915agar3.jpg"></center>

so is this kanten or agar agar?

i think it will take some effort on my part to better learn the differences between kanten and agar agar, which i had believed to be exactly equivalent.


"Bibimbap shappdy wappdy wap." - Jinmyo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

well i think the majority of people will use it interchangeably ( is that a word? :huh: )

the difference might be down to the base ingredient but the usage, texture and taste will be hard for most people to differentiate.


"so tell me how do you bone a chicken?"

"tastes so good makes you want to slap your mamma!!"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry, to revive an old topic.... but i was wondering what kasutera differ from other cake recipes? Is it much more dense?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sorry, to revive an old topic.... but i was wondering what kasutera differ from other cake recipes? Is it much more dense?
kastella are light, spongy cakes (not dense) with a very fine crumb. lotsa eggs usually. if you were to break off a piece of kastella it would not fall apart. a pound cake, by contrast, is dense and heavier and not so spongy. and a corner broken off from a slice is more likely to fall apart into crumbs.

i think it is a derivative of some kind of a portuguese cake... but i dont know.


"Bibimbap shappdy wappdy wap." - Jinmyo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

here is a little bit on kasutera, mostly the name origins:

http://home.att.ne.jp/kiwi/AptNo7/kasutera.html

I find the taste similar to a very eggy yellow sponge cake.


<p><strong>Kristin Wagner</strong>, aka "torakris"

Manager, Membership

<a class="bbc_email" href="mailto:kwagner@egstaff.org" title="E-mail Link">kwagner@egstaff.org</a></p>

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, kastella (kasutera) is essentially sponge caake, sometimes the texture is almost like angel food cake, but just slightly denser. My favorite is also matcha (green tea) flavor. I love the beautiful green color as well.

There's a lot of (ahem) borrowing that goes on between countries in the Far East. thus it is no surprise that I see it often at Korean bakeries here in Los Angeles and Orange County as well. hehe. Actually, I can't recall seeing it at the few Japanese bakeries I've tried.

recipe for matcha kastella cake (green tea chiffon cake) in English

a little history and recipe for plain version (English)

--oh no, I reread the original post and realized it asked for steamed cake recipe. steamed cake recipe will prob be different. I'll look around.


Edited by jschyun (log)

I love cold Dinty Moore beef stew. It is like dog food! And I am like a dog.

--NeroW

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh wow... Thanks for the replies. And thank you jschyun, for the recipe!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

bought today at a korean bakery...

<center><img src="http://www.rawbw.com/~coconut/eg/04/041014tous2.jpg"></center>

this was a "cream cheese kastella" and it was $1.75...

it was pretty heavy. heavier than a normal kastella. just a touch tangy and very tasty. i will get these the next time in in the area, although it is a bit far from my apt.

cafe tous les jours

(inside northridge <a href="http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=24282263&ck=3817723874&tab=B2C&tcat=7766835&city=Northridge&state=CA&uzip=91325&country=us&msa=4480&cs=4&ed=EBjiF61o2TxI94oMEzWUCS.Rk5Gza67RPxS1WDr9SjcMRw--&stat=:pos:0:regular:regT:1:fbT:0">galleria market</a>)

10201 reseda blvd

northridge, ca 91324

(818) 772-5755 (galleria market phone number)


"Bibimbap shappdy wappdy wap." - Jinmyo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fantastic fing melonpan!! Did it taste anything like a real cheese cake?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

my son and I had these for a snack today

gallery_6134_91_1101873967.jpg

kuri (chestnut) manju, I got to eat the one in the picture while my son ate the rest....


<p><strong>Kristin Wagner</strong>, aka "torakris"

Manager, Membership

<a class="bbc_email" href="mailto:kwagner@egstaff.org" title="E-mail Link">kwagner@egstaff.org</a></p>

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.