Mochi from Minamoto Kitchoan
February 19, 2011 § Leave a comment
I love fresh mochi. Though specifically I love daifukumochi– a sweet paste filling wrapped in pounded rice cake and shaped into a small ball. It’s the image everyone conjures up in their heads when they hear “mochi”. However mochi is just general term for the name of the pounded rice cake that is molded into different shapes or used to cover different fillings. They also think of the cold balls of daifukumochi they find in Asian grocery stores. But the fresh daifuku I love tastes nothing like the grocery store kind found in the refrigerated section that has a self life measured in weeks. They tastes like tough, rubber balls that could be used to angrily pelt someone in the head from afar compared to fresh daifukumochi, which looks lovingly handcrafted to appear beautiful like artwork, feels incredibly delicate since the mochi skin is so soft and squishy, and tastes smooth and deliciously chewy. I also really enjoy the filling, but I just love the mochi. It’s my favorite part. I love the soft, almost gooey chewiness of the mochi skin.
While in Midtown, Wayne dropped by Minamoto Kitchoan to pick up my favorite kind of daifukumochi, mamedaifuku, which is a red bean paste filling that is covered with a layer of mochi and interspersed within the layer of mochi are soft whole black beans. He surprised me with an extra little gift of matchamanju because he knows I love anything with the green tea flavor. The difference between mochi and manju is that mochi is made from pounded ricecake while manju is made of rice powder, flour, and buckwheat flour. Texturally, manju has a flakey crust and a cake-like interior.
Minamoto Kitchoan is a Japanese confectionary store that has its sweets shipped in daily from Japan. I think because of a combination of superficial reasons such as the location of the store, the beautiful decor, and having the sweets shipped over daily from Japan, the price of all the sweets, ranging from just below $3 to $4, are relatively expensive for a small, individual confection. In a way, it’s the equivalent of buying a cupcake from Magnolia Bakery because a singular cupcake is $3.25 and both are delicate sweet and delicious in their own ways. But Minamoto Kitchoan’s mamedaifuku is so good though. It’s the reason why I always return to Minamoto to buy some sweets instead of just window shop the beautifully crafted confections and admire the equally as beautiful decor of the store.
608 5th Ave
(between 48th St & 49th St)
New York, NY 10020