Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Ahhh, mochi! Just the name is enough to make you want it! Well, I've created many a mochi muncher in those that I have introduced to mochi - and I thank the person who enlightened me to it's existence. Mochi, for those that aren't privy to it's wonderful world, is a Japanese rice cake made of glutinous sweet rice pounded into a paste. There are many ways in which mochi presents itself to it's ardent fans: ice cream mochi balls (an easy favorite!), mochi filled with red bean paste, mochi cakes, and there is also the ozenzai Japanese soup which has azuki beans and pieces of mochi in it (I have not been lucky enough to taste this yet). So how can mochi be medicinal when it is wrapped around ice cream? Mochi, separate to the ice cream is in fact curative - see the note below, but I wouldn't go so far as to say that ice cream itself is truly healing, though it does have its place in our diet like all things (especially in the summer when we are burning up). However, you should not overdo it (like anything) or you'll end up with a cold stomach which is the death of your digestion! Mochi ice cream does however come in many wonderful medicinal flavors such as: red bean (good for your blood); taro (good for the stomach); amongst a plethora of many other flavors (green tea, mango, vanilla, chocolate, coffee, you name it!).
**Medicinal Note: Mochi itself is medicinal and has been used in Japan to strengthen digestion, for anemia, for breast-feeding mothers to produce abundant milk, and during convalescence.