June 13, 2013

Mizu Yokan

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I came across the Japanese sweets called mizuyokan while reading a Japanese novel REAL WORLD written by Natsuo Kirino. The sweets I found out are made with a mixture of kanten (agar or gelatin), water, and azuki (red bean paste). One of the websites I visited has a recipe for matcha and white bean paste. The white bean paste may be dried navy or lima beans. I used a pound of dried lima beans to make the white paste. The flavor is very mild on its own which is great when used for the matcha (green tea powder) bean cakes. I also made with sweet azuki paste I already had in the freezer and adjusted the sugar to my taste. I love the smoky flavor of azuki beans; still my favorite.

When I read the ingredients and procedure it reminded me of the sweets I made a few month ago from a ready-made box but had coconut milk in the ingredients list. They are basically the same.

Matcha Mizu Yokan
2 teaspoon agar powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1¼ cups water
¾ cup sugar (more or less to taste)
2 teaspoons matcha
2 tablespoons water
1 cup fine white bean paste (recipe below)
  • In a small sauce pan, mix agar powder, sugar, and 1¼ cups water. Leave for 5 minutes to soften the agar. Bring to a gentle boil while constantly stirring. In a small bowl, whisk together ¾ cup sugar and green tea. Add water and bean paste. Add this mixture to the sauce pan and cook over medium heat until gently boiling. Simmer while stirring for 2 minutes. Pour into a 6 x 4 inch rectangular pan or individual square silicone mold. Leave on the kitchen counter to set then refrigerate. Slice into rectangular pieces. 
White Bean Paste
1 pound dried lima or butter beans

  • Wash lima beans very well. Place in a large pot and top with 5-inch water. Cover the pot and soak the beans for 24 hours. Remove the skins and discard. Drain and wash twice. Cover with 3-inch water, bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer over low heat until very tender. Skim off foam until clear and continue simmering. 
  • Drain cooked beans on a sieve lined with 2 layers of fine cheese cloth and place sieve on top of a bowl. Pass drained beans through a fine sieve for a very smooth paste. Divide into 1 cup portions and freeze until needed.

Here was the store-bought ready mixed red beans and agar cakes I had in February of this year. They are so good with hot roasted rice and green tea. These have the exact same consistency as the ones I made from scratch. Next time I make I'll use coconut milk in place of some of the water.


Winnie said...

I've never even seen something like these
Please send me some urgently!!!

maiylah said...

looks sooo tempting! wish am having one (or two!) right now... :)

appreciate much your taking the time to share and link over at Food Friday, Ms Oggi
enjoy the rest of the week!

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