What’s mochi? It’s a special product made from special mochi rice. Mochi is a way of preserving an edible rice product that can be quickly and easily cooked and eaten later. The finished product is a thin square about 2 centimeters thick and about 6 by 9 cms in size. It is tough and feels like rubbery plastic. It is cooked in many way, from putting into soups and stews to frying in oil until it expands and softens.
Here, the younger family members love helping out making kindling for the fire. Shown, is a Japanese handsaw which is drawn towards the user to cut.
And here we see the woodstove with a couple of rice steamer baskets on top preparing the mochi rice.
The rice is transported when cooked, to a wooden pounding container.
First, the hot rice is mashed with the head of the pounding hammer.
Now the mochi is pounded into a sticky mass. One person pounds and the other turns the mass and keeps it wet.
The still steaming mochi is then transported to be laid out to dry.
And here it is being flattened into sheets.
Now for some taste testing. Making mochi is a traditional new years family task, but is often done now with a special electric mochi machine.
People wrap it in seaweed, pour soya on it, dress it up with various garnishes, but I like it with maple syrup, mmmm.