Usually, when people say “strawberry mochi ice cream” the strawberry usually describes the ice cream, not the actual mochi. But, the other day, I was inspired to create a mochi with not just a rose-leaf complexion, but a very berry flavor, as well. I created a beautiful mochi dough without any food coloring at all and it was perfect. I called it “Strawberry Mochi.“
But it’s summer, and I was craving those wonderful ice cream grenades wrapped in powdery rice cake that I used to eat by the dozen when I was in college and had the metabolic capital to eat food items by the dozen. I therefore decided that I would expend a few minutes to figure out how to make mochi ice cream, using the beautiful Strawberry Mochi I mastered so readily.
Things I Learned From My Mistakes
Well, let me just say: this took way longer than I planned and was way more complicated than I expected because I made a lot of mistakes. YOU will be the lucky beneficiary of all that I learned from those mistakes. For example, I realized that a couple tablespoons of potato starch sprinkled on the surface ain’t going to cut it. You need a lot more to make sure the dough doesn’t stick to your hands, your rolling pin, your fingers, your clothes, your lips. I tried rolling the mochi with my rolling pin by merely dusting the pin with some starch and it did not work. At all.
I also learned that there really is no conveniently sized scooper to scoop out the ice cream into the miniature muffin tin, and therefore, using two spoons (or, in my case, one scooper and one spoon) works best. I also learned that the ice cream really doesn’t have to look like perfect gum balls (like they do in the stores). The first three took 15 minutes, but once I got the hang out of it, I was able to complete them pretty quickly. Just scoop up a good bit of the ice cream (it’s easier if the ice cream is a little soft) and use small spoon to dislodge it and into the muffin tin.
Also, the dough is pretty durable. I thought because it was so thin, it would tear and rip whenever I tried to wrap it around my ice cream balls. But not so. I was able to pleat, wrap, and mold to my heart’s content, just as if I were using a strong wheat flour based wrapper (like I do for my dumplings) without so much as a drop of ice cream seeping through.
Finally, don’t try and cut into your mochi before they are completely frozen. You’ll end up with squashed mochi balls drowning in melted ice cream. While they are still quite tasty, they are extremely messy and don’t quite hit the mark that you’re going for.
Quick Tips for Making Strawberry Mochi Ice Cream
- Use two spoons to create ice cream balls and place them in your muffin tin
- Make sure to use plenty of potato starch when handling the mochi
- Use slightly softened ice cream when making the ice cream balls
- After using the entire sheet of dough for wrappers, take the scraps and create a second smaller dough ball with them and repeat for a few more wrappers and then eat any additional scraps (no waste!)
- Make sure not to try and eat the mochi ice cream until they are completely frozen
Strawberry Mochi Ice Cream
- Miniature muffin tin
- Rolling Pin
- Parchment paper
- Line the bottoms of the muffin tin with parchment paper. (See video below)
- Scoop the ice cream using a pair of spoons into the muffin tin. Each ice cream ball should be about the size of a small of a gum ball. It doesn't need to be a perfect ball. Place the tray into the freezer while you make the mochi.
- Add 1/4 cup of the dried strawberries into a food processor or grinder. Grind into a course powder.
- Add the sweet white rice flour, sugar, salt, unground dried strawberries, and ground strawberries into a large microwave safe bowl.
- Add 1 1/4 cup water and stir. Cover the bowl and place in the microwave for 1 minute. Remove from the microwave and stir. It should be thick and slightly translucent around the edges.
- Place the bowl back in the microwave for another 45 seconds. Remove and stir with a wooden spoon. At this point, it should be very sticky and hard to mix. If it hasn't reached that consistency, place it back in the microwave for another 1 to 2 minutes (it really depends on the wattage of your microwave), until the dough is sticky and slightly translucent.
- Pour 1/2 cup of the potato starch onto your working surface. Empty the contents of the bowl onto your surface and shape the dough into a ball. The dough will be incredibly sticky, so apply additional potato starch to your hands as necessary.
- Use your rolling pin to flatten the dough into a long sheet, about 1/4 inch thick. Apply generous amounts of potato starch to make sure your rolling pin does not stick to the dough.
- Using a small bowl or cup, cut out a circle from the dough. Place an ice cream ball in the center and wrap the dough around the ball, by bringing the dough up and pleating and pinching the tops. (See video below) Repeat for remaining dough and ice cream.
- Use a pastry brush to dust the mochi with additional potato starch. Place the wrapped ice cream balls in the freezer for at least 2 hours before serving.