Let them eat mochi cake
Goodness knows, I’m not a sweet-tooth kind of guy. On the rare occasion that I do bake on the other side of the spectrum, it’s a sure bet that it’s for a pretty darn special reason. Today was one such reason.
When discussing treats for her farewell luau (obviously, as she was born and raised in Hawaii) , Irene mentioned coconut mochi cake. I’ve never tasted one, but I do enjoy the texture of glutenous sweet rice flour. I had a gut feeling (get it?) that this wasn’t going to be your average cake, so I thought I’d give it a whirl, even if it was to cook with mochi for the first time. For those following along, I should mention, this experiment was to be my second-ever cake.
Well, lightning does strike twice, or I’ve got some crazy beginner’s luck. As you can see, it didn’t come out too shabby. The outside was golden and slightly crisp, but the insides had a slightly moist mochi jiggle. Since people are have asked, the recipe is below.
Makes: 1 large bundt cake
1 stick butter, melted and cooled (but still liquid)
1 16 oz. Mochiko (sweet rice flour), sold in boxes or in bulk section, approx. 3 cups
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar
5 eggs, beaten (or 4 if you prefer a more dense cake)
1 12 oz. can evaporated milk (can substitute another can of coconut milk)
1/2 cup water
1 13.5 oz. can coconut milk (unsweetened and NOT reduced fat)
2 tsp. vanilla
- Arrange oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Grease your cake pan with butter. Grease it well, if you want it to come out unblemished.
- Whisk together mochiko, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.
- Whisk together coconut milk, evaporated milk, eggs, butter, and vanilla in another bowl.
- Add coconut mixture to flour mixture, whisking until batter is combined. No lumps.
- Pour batter into a greased Bundt pan (or a 13 x 9 baking pan). If necessary, smooth top, and bake until top is golden and cake begins to pull away from sides of pan, about 1 1/2 hours. Give it a check after an hour with a cake tester, a toothpick or (for you knitters out there) a 2.0mm Signature Needlearts double-pointed needle. It’s done when it pulls out clean.
- Cool cake completely in pan on a rack, about 2 hours. (I did this one overnight in pan, and it came out beautifully.) /li>
- Once it’s cooled completely, enjoy.
Updated July 5, 2014: Thanks to Emily for pointing this out. The original version of this recipe didn’t include the evaporated milk in step 3. It’s whisked together with the other wet ingredients. The recipe has been corrected.
Mochi keeps, covered and chilled, for three days, but this cake didn’t last twenty minutes. For certain gluten-sensitive people, this recipe contains no wheat—that’s why my sister is baking one this weekend. You can riff off this in all kinds of ways. In my research I’ve come across recommendations to add toasted coconut pieces, coconut extract or orange zest. My next one will be flavored with matcha green tea.
Tomorrow is Lady Guinevere’s last day here in the office. I’m grateful her parting resulted in this new treat in my baking quiver. But, sadly, I’ll miss you bunches. This place was lucky to have you for as long as it did, G.
Aloha and a hui hou.