Couple of things to note
- The deco tang yuan should be served fresh on the same day. Imagine you put your usual tang yuan in the fridge, it probably wont be too nice as it will harden.
- If you really need to make it earlier you can make the tang yuan and let them rest in a bowl of cold water. Then scoop out and place them on the pudding or serve them with the sweetened soup.
Matcha Pudding (Japanese Green Tea Pudding)
* Good quality matcha powder should have a bright colour, a nice green shade. The colour of the powder will not be dull and dusky.
* Good quality matcha powder do not have a very long shelf life, so do check the expiry and buy the right size for yourself
Matcha powder, 1 tbsp
Milk, 200 ml
Gelatin powder, 5g
Heat the milk in a small saucepan and turn off the heat when it boils. Add in sugar and match powder and mix well.
Next, add the gelatin powder and mix well. Transfer the mixture into a bowl.
Add in the fresh cream and mix well.
Divide the mixture into your pudding containers and place them in the chiller for the pudding to set.
Tip: I use a sieve as I pour the mixture into the pudding cups, this step helps remove the bubbles that were formed during the mixing process.
Kawaii Rilakkuma Deco Tang Yuan (Japanese shiratama sweets style)
*I used shiratamako (Japanese glutinous rice flour) in this recipe. In Japanese kanji, it is written as 白玉粉.
* If the above is not available at your country, you can try using normal glutinous rice flour.
* I used Wilton edible gel colors in this recipe, you can substitute with other types of natural food coloring. Note that if you are using liquid food coloring, the dough should not be too wet as the food coloring will be added ‘moisture’.
*Tip: The tofu in this recipe provides the ‘moisture’ content for the deco tang yuan, so you should adjust the amount accordingly. So usually I do not add in all the tofu at one time, I will add about the same amount as the flour then slowly adjust the amount and add in more until my dough reaches the desired texture.
Shiratamako (Japanese glutinous rice flour), 60g
Tofu, approx 65~75g
Cocoa powder, approx 1tsp (if you are using dark cocoa powder, then do not use so much, adjust accordingly)
Black food gel color (you can also use black cocoa powder if available at your place)
Pink food gel color
Yellow food gel color
A tiny bowl of water
Pot for boiling the tang yuan
Method (Part 1 -prepare the dough)
- First add 40g of tofu to shiratamako flour and mix well. The mixture will resemble crumbs. Separate the mixture into roughly 7:3 ratio.
- To the 7 ratio portion from step 1, sieve in the cocoa powder, continue to add in some tofu as you knead. Do this until you achieve a soft dough that is evenly brown in colour. Note that the dough texture should be soft and feels almost like your ear lobe. (sorry for the vivid image) There should not be a lot of visible cracks. If so, then you need to add in a little more tofu.
- To the 3 ratio portion from step 1, continue to add in tofu as you knead. Do this until you achieve a soft white dough. Note that the dough texture should be soft and feels almost like your ear lobe. (sorry for the vivid image). There should not be a lot of visible cracks. If so, then you need to add in a little more tofu.
- Divide the dough from Step 3 in to 4 parts. Add in the food colors (pink, yellow, black) to 3 of them and knead well. You will now have small dough balls of white, pink, yellow and black color
Tip: Keep the prepared dough in cling wrap as you continue work on creating the characters. This helps prevent drying.
Method (Part 2 – Shaping and creating the Rilakkuma bears)
- Standby a small bowl of water nearby. You might need to just lightly dip your fingers and wet the dough and knead if they dry up as you create the characters.
- Prepare a sheet of parchment/baking paper. You may wish to lay it on a chopping board for support.
- Using your hands, knead the body parts for Rilakkuma. To help myself, I sketched out the size and design of the Rilakkuma bears I wanted to make as a guide. I place it at the side and refer to it as I work.
- To measure out the tiny amounts for the features, I sometimes use a knife to cut out a small bit of the dough and shape it accordingly.
- Place the parts on the parchment paper.
- Using a scissors, cut out the parchment/baking paper below the completed bears.
- Boil a pot of water. The water level must be at least twice the height of your creations.
- Gently lower the dough together with the parchment/baking paper into the water. Remove the paper if it slips away from the dough during the boiling process.
- Cook until the bears float, remove and place them in cold (iced preferred) water.
- Serve :)