How to Make Mochi

The Women and Girls Put Finishing Touches on Mochi

Women shaping mochi.
Women shaping mochi. | Source

Before Christmas Day, 2009, I had never heard of mochi.

When Sandy, a Japanese friend, invited my husband and me to join a family gathering to make rice cakes on Christmas morning, I had no inkling of what they were or how they were made. Little dId I realize I was about to witness a Japanese tradition that appears to be dying out as families move from farms to cities in Japan, as well as in the United States. Few Japanese-American families anymore appear to be as committed to keeping the tradition of making mochi from scratch, as Sandy's family is. I only knew this was the only chance I would have to see Sandy for a while, since we live about 200 miles apart and Kosta and I were only in the area for a couple of days. I only knew this might be my last chance to see Sandy alive again.

You might be wondering why Sandy's family would engage in what you will see can be a strenuous and time-consuming activity for several hours on Christmas Day. Christmas Day is seven days before New Year's Day, and among the Japanese, New Year's Day is a more important celebration than Christmas. The mochi (rice cakes) last about seven days if frozen after they are made. So they are made and then frozen for use on New Year's Day on Christmas --a day when almost no one has to work. About 50 (counting children) of Sandy's extended family members and friends were assembled and involved when we arrived.

I took all pictures used in this hub. They are copyrighted, 2009, and all rights are reserved.

Sandy Mukae with her family and extended family, Christmas Day, 2009
Sandy Mukae with her family and extended family, Christmas Day, 2009
Sandy Mukae before she got sick
Sandy Mukae before she got sick | Source

In Memory of Sandy Mukae, to whom this hub is dedicated

I want to dedicate this hub to my friend Sandy Mukae, without whom it never would have been written. It was her invitation to visit her and her family on this special occasion that introduced me to mochi and the traditional way of making it.

Sandy was my faithful friend for over 40 years. I have watched her family grow up. I played with her children when they were toddlers. Her children entertained my children when we visited her almost 20 years ago. And Sandy was there when we later buried our children-- first Jason in 1991 and Sarah in 2009.

Sandy knew how to listen and pray, and act in the best interests of her many friends. I did not hesitate to confide in her things I would not have to anyone else because I knew she was trustworthy. She has been with me through my darkest valleys and I know she has walked with others through theirs. She would never seek attention for herself, but as a wife, mother, nurse, and friend she has let Jesus use her hands, feet and heart to look to the interests of others.

Sandy waged a fierce fight for life against a vicious enemy -- cancer -- for several years. She tried every possible treatment for it and exhausted them all. She hoped for a new trial to open up that might keep her fighting options open. She has shown great courage in fighting this battle and has been an inspiration to all who knew her.

Sandy passed peacefully into Heaven on November 30, 2010, at her home with her family present. She made the decision shortly before that to put herself under Hospice care, and we have known that she would be leaving us soon. We are glad that she is now free of pain and getting to know her Lord face to face, but those of us who are left will be missing her greatly. You can see Sandy, almost 11 months earlier than the day she left us at the extreme right of the picture in her red shirt. Her husband is squatting in the very front. Her son and his wife are back, slightly behind her, and her grandchildren are the stair-steps between them. That's their daughter in the red and white striped shirt. Keep them all in your prayers as they miss Sandy each year when they gather again, and, individually, in their hearts, day by day. Everyone in this picture will be missing Sandy, as will I and her friends who were not at this event.


Be Careful!

Source

Making mochi for 50 is a big project. - Though its orderly, several things can be going on at once.

Shaping mochi is women's work.
Shaping mochi is women's work. | Source

Making Mochi This Way Requires Lot of Space and People

One of the reasons many families don't make mochi from scratch anymore is because it requires a lot of people to do the work and a lot of space. It's not a kitchen activity. You could not do this in a city apartment. It also requires strong men. You will notice that a lot of men are involved in this activity. The women do the less strenuous jobs, including putting on the finishing touches. When we first walked into the garage, the first thing we noticed was a large table covered with flour, with women and girls on all sides of it. They were working with a white substance that looked somewhat like white clay.

As we began to look around and ask questions, we were directed to different activity centers so that we could observe the order in which things happened. I will show you below the points of interest and the order of activities.

The first stop was the steamer just outside the garage in the back yard. - This where the rice was cooked to make the mochi.

Steaming the Rice
Steaming the Rice | Source

The men seemed to be in charge of this operation. When the cooking time was nearing completion, the men would taste small portions to see if it was just right before they removed the rice from the steamer for the next step. This whole operation of making mochi reminded me of how we make zjito from wheat for our Slava celebration. We first cook the wheat grains until they are just right, and we taste bits of it toward the end to test whether it is done. Of course, making zjito does not require as much physical effort or as many people as making mochi, but the whole process takes longer because of the drying time.

Next we went back in the garage to see the cooked rice ground for the mochi. - I'm not sure, but they appeared to be using a sausage grinder.

Source

In the picture you see the hopper at the top where the rice from the steamer outside had just been dumped. the paddle was used to the rice into the grinding part of the machine. The ground rice comes out the end into the bowl. The men also handled this part.

When we make zjito, we use a smaller meat grinder to grind a pound of wheat by hand. It comes out looking more like hamburger than the thick rope of dough for the mochi.

Here are some varied views of the grinding operation - You can see that the men work together on this.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Close-up of grinder.It's kind of a messy operation.Can you image doing this on your kitchen counter?It seems that many hands make lighter work.It's a companionable activity.
Close-up of grinder.
Close-up of grinder. | Source
It's kind of a messy operation.
It's kind of a messy operation. | Source
Can you image doing this on your kitchen counter?
Can you image doing this on your kitchen counter? | Source
It seems that many hands make lighter work.
It seems that many hands make lighter work. | Source
It's a companionable activity.
It's a companionable activity. | Source

What is your mochi experience?

If more than one answer is true for you, pick the one nearest the bottom of the list

Before starting to read his lens, had you ever heard of mochi?

See results without voting

To Help You Understand the Photos Below

1. There was not enough space in the captions for me to put all the information you might to understand what you are seeing if you aren't Japanese or if you have never seen mochi made this way. The numbers in the descriptions below apply to the numbers of the photos.First, one needs the right equipment. The big bowl-like item is usually made of wood. It's called an usu. The dough is put into the usu after it has been ground. The gloves are worn by the person in the chair who moves the dough, as is the apron hanging down. The two mallets are called kine. They are the largest I've ever seen. They are used to pound the dough that is in the usu. There is a story behind this usu, but I will tell it further down.* Be sure to click on the other pictures in order to read the captions so you'll know what is going on.

2.The person who sits in the chair turns the dough after it is pounded every time. It's a rhythm -- sort of like kneading bread dough, but on a much larger scale. A strong man hits the dough with the kine. The person in the chair turns the dough. Then the kine pounds it again. This repeats until it's ready. The person in the chair and anyone within a few feet of the usu can expect to get splashed when the kine connects with the dough. Thus the apron. She is wearing the gloves because the dough is very sticky. Although a woman occupies the chair now, i also saw a man occupy it. Everyone needs a break. People took turns turning and pounding.

3.This is where the kine meets the dough.

4. This is an overview of the activity allows you to see the scene as I did. A man is turning the dough here. The kine is about to come down. There's probably more rice cooking outside, and more rice being ground where you can't see it. The women in back are waiting for the dough so they can finish shaping the mochi and filling them.

5. How do you suppose they decide who gets to sit in the chair during the pounding?

*This usu was made in America before WWII, molded in a barrel. It was made of cement instead of the traditional wood. It was very heavy. When the owners in Sandy's extended family had to leave their farm for relocation during the war, the usu was left behind. A neighbor began to use it as a planter. When the family returned and saw it in the neighbor's yard, they claimed ownership, and the neighbors gave it back. Now it's back to its traditional use again.

This step in making mochi is exciting! - Pounding the rice dough

Click thumbnail to view full-size
1. The Equipment2. The person who sits in the chair has, in my opinion, the job I'd least like to have. 3. Here the kine is connecting with the dough.4.This is an overview of the activity so you can see everything happening at once.5. Another picture of the kine connecting. Can you understand why I don't envy the girl in the chair who turns the dough?
1. The Equipment
1. The Equipment | Source
2. The person who sits in the chair has, in my opinion, the job I'd least like to have.
2. The person who sits in the chair has, in my opinion, the job I'd least like to have. | Source
3. Here the kine is connecting with the dough.
3. Here the kine is connecting with the dough. | Source
4.This is an overview of the activity so you can see everything happening at once.
4.This is an overview of the activity so you can see everything happening at once. | Source
5. Another picture of the kine connecting. Can you understand why I don't envy the girl in the chair who turns the dough?
5. Another picture of the kine connecting. Can you understand why I don't envy the girl in the chair who turns the dough? | Source

Now the mochi is ready for the table where it will be finished. - The women and girls around the table represent many nuclear families.

Source

Why Do They Make Mochi This Way?

I was told that one reason this family keeps the tradition of making mochi alive is that it brings the extended family together every year for a purpose. As they work together, they have a shared experience, talk, and keep in touch. In this picture, the dough has just come out of the usu and onto the table. The women will take it from here.

Finishing the Mochi: More about the photos below.

All the information that pertains to the photos below could not fit in the space I had to write it in. The numbers below correspond to the numbers of the photos that need the rest of their information.

1. The table is first covered with plastic and then the surface is covered with glutinous rice flour. The dough is very sticky and one doesn't want it to stick to the table. I make a bread dough that is very sticky and I have to keep coating the surface of the table with more and more flour as I knead for the same reason.

8. Some of the mochi was being sampled as it was being made. They were dipping it in a brown sauce made of one part sugar to two parts soy sauce before eating it. I tried it that way, too.

10. It appeared people were eating in shifts, as some were still working when we ate. The food looked delicious, but since we were supposed to eat Christmas dinner in an hour at my brother's house, I only ate salad and one bite of pork. The prospect of a full turkey dinner in an hour didn't inhibit Kosta's participation in this buffet.

Here's how the mochi is finished. - Each family makes its own supply.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
1. A large table is needed. 2. The mound is shaped enough to make it easier to distribute.  My friend Sandy is at the front with red under her apron. She's waiting for her share.3. The mound of dough is separated. Pieces are made available to the willing hands belonging to all those women standing around the table waiting for it.4. This activity is inter-generational. The young girls learn from their mothers and aunts and grandmothers how to shape and fill the mochi.5. Here is the bean filling or "Anko." Families can either make it or buy it already made.6. After the mochi is in a flattened mound, some of the anko is put in the center.7. Then the mound is shaped around it to cover it.8.  Each family sets aside what it has made in these boxes to freeze and eat later at home on New Year's Day.9. My husband is sampling it here.10. Later on he took a pretty good sampling from the buffet laid out for the families to strengthen them during and after their work.
1. A large table is needed.
1. A large table is needed. | Source
2. The mound is shaped enough to make it easier to distribute.  My friend Sandy is at the front with red under her apron. She's waiting for her share.
2. The mound is shaped enough to make it easier to distribute. My friend Sandy is at the front with red under her apron. She's waiting for her share. | Source
3. The mound of dough is separated. Pieces are made available to the willing hands belonging to all those women standing around the table waiting for it.
3. The mound of dough is separated. Pieces are made available to the willing hands belonging to all those women standing around the table waiting for it. | Source
4. This activity is inter-generational. The young girls learn from their mothers and aunts and grandmothers how to shape and fill the mochi.
4. This activity is inter-generational. The young girls learn from their mothers and aunts and grandmothers how to shape and fill the mochi. | Source
5. Here is the bean filling or "Anko." Families can either make it or buy it already made.
5. Here is the bean filling or "Anko." Families can either make it or buy it already made. | Source
6. After the mochi is in a flattened mound, some of the anko is put in the center.
6. After the mochi is in a flattened mound, some of the anko is put in the center. | Source
7. Then the mound is shaped around it to cover it.
7. Then the mound is shaped around it to cover it. | Source
8.  Each family sets aside what it has made in these boxes to freeze and eat later at home on New Year's Day.
8. Each family sets aside what it has made in these boxes to freeze and eat later at home on New Year's Day. | Source
9. My husband is sampling it here.
9. My husband is sampling it here. | Source
10. Later on he took a pretty good sampling from the buffet laid out for the families to strengthen them during and after their work.
10. Later on he took a pretty good sampling from the buffet laid out for the families to strengthen them during and after their work. | Source

There are easier ways to get mochi for New Year's

It can be made from package mixes and cooked in the microwave or bought already prepared. Very few are left who continue to make it this way. These links show you some of the other mochi recipes and ways to use mochi.

How to Make Mochi in 30 Minutes or Less

This mochi is a bit fancier with a wider variety of fillings. It also uses some wheat flour to keep the mochi soft.

Try This More Modern Way if Time is Short

Pounding the Mochi - Contrast this with the easier way in the module above this.

The family I observed had only one person pounding at a time. The people in the video below appear to be making this at a senior residence. Unless you are able to understand Japanese, you probably won't understand the audio, but I want you to see the action. How I wish I'd been able to get a video of what I saw. I was just lucky I had brought my camera.

Source

This man explained the traditions to me.

His name is Soya Tayui. He answered many of my questions about how and why things were done and what they were called. He pointed out that mochi is a high energy food which runners used before marathons to sustain them. He also told me about the choking hazard. He is sampling some mochi here. He likes the fact that the tradition helps bring the family together. Traditions do help bind families together, and for that reason they are important in every culture.

Is there value in making mochi from scratch?

Or is it just too much trouble? Why would busy families want to keep doing things the hard way when mochi can be made easily from packages or even picked up already made? I hope you will state your opinion below. You do not have to be a member of Squidoo to participate.

Do you believe it's still worth while to make mochi from scratch?

Yes, it tastes better and brings families together.

anonymous 4 years ago

I did not know that it was such a big tradition until know. My grandma is Japanese and she always bought mochi. I attended a Japanese festival today where there was a mochi making demonstration. The homemade mochi was much better than store bought. I would like to try it. I might have to try it for feeding a few less seeing there are not 50 people in my family that can help. Thanks for all the information. I loved it.


anonymous 4 years ago

yes


anonymous 4 years ago

Of course!


jd1797 4 years ago

YES!!!!!! Fresh mochi is delicious, much better than frozen.


anonymous 4 years ago

YES!!!! We see our families and I love mochi.


anonymous 5 years ago

half of the point of making it by scratch is bringing the family together and there's also a shared feeling of appreciation or pride in a job well done when you get to taste the outcome of everyone's work. Also doing it once a year makes it even more of a festive tradition and gives you a sense of pride in your heritage thinking your ancestors might have done the same thing a long time ago. Plus it's tasty.


anonymous 5 years ago

It seems like it is better because you can make it your own. I have had mochi from packages and I always would want to change bits of the recipe.


kathysart 5 years ago

YES!!


Scarlettohairy 5 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

I think it's a great idea but sounds like LOTS of work. It sounds like the type of activity handed down through generations, making it very special.


Nancy Hardin 5 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

Yes, for the reasons you have stated; it is a binding together of the family unit. My daughters and I used to bake all the Christmas cookies together when they were young. Now, they do it with their own children. Also, we gather to make tamales together too, though we are not Mexican. Working together for a common purpose draws people together.


aesta1 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

I love traditions like these and it is always a joy to eat what you've made together.


anonymous 5 years ago

Preserving traditions from generation to generation can only be done by demonstration and participation.


Lee Hansen 5 years ago from Vermont

Preserving traditions and making our own foods are uber important.


pheonix76 5 years ago from WNY

I think it's a great activity for a family to get together and make...which seems to be one of the main purposes of mochi, the process.


anonymous 5 years ago

I lived in Japan for many years. Every one in the neibourhood came to help pound it.


anonymous 6 years ago

I do.I live near Los Angeles, CA. and I participate in "Mochitsuki" in preparation for "Oshogatsu" (New Years Celebration). It's part of my family tradition.


Michey LM 6 years ago

It looks complicated but you have a point in tasting better and being a family work around the table... we kind of bypass this great family value.


anonymous 6 years ago

When I was a child we used to make it together as a church family in Seattle (just the machine, no pounding). We kids ate it right off the table. As an adult I missed it because the older generation got too old to continue. Now I have no choice but to make it because I moved to a community with few Japanese. Luckily I met a woman with a machine, now we need to get a crew together! Of course with few people, we need not make a huge batch. BTW, even the fro-yo shop in my new town has sweet mochi as a topping (as did my old college town) so don't be surprised if your kid knows what it is!!


anonymous 6 years ago

Wow look how long it used to take to make mochi, all that time and effort, and now look, things have been made so simple and easier for us,its sad, traditional way is better if you have time xbut nower days hardly anyone apprieciates the effort from back then, :(


anonymous 6 years ago

yes


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    No. It's too much trouble. Families can still get together and have more fun doing other things with the time.

    anonymous 5 years ago

    As someone who hasn't tried this, would prefer to have someone else make it.


    norma-holt 5 years ago

    No, I think these kind of traditions belong in the past, especially as this substance can choke.


    Joan Haines 5 years ago

    I like eating mochi, but prefer to buy it. Learning about how it's made was fascinating. Thank you.


    blanckj 5 years ago

    It looks fun but I don't think we'll ever make it. Possibly a great cultural activity for a classroom.


    capriliz lm 6 years ago

    Sorry, I have never had it and I really doubt that I would make it. But, it looks like a fun family activity.


    SandyMertens 6 years ago from Frozen Tundra

    Since I have never made this, I will go on the other side here. But I am sure it is good to make.

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      I enjoyed witnessing it, learning about it, and even tasting it. What do you think? I hope you will go back up and share you opinions about the value of this tradition in our duel module. If you don't have an opinion on that but would like to share your own experiences with mochi or your family's traditions, or just say you were here, the place to do it is below.

      More by this Author


      I hope you enjoyed this brief look at the Japanese tradition of making mochi. 66 comments

      OhMe profile image

      OhMe 7 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      This was so interesting. I had never heard of Mochi so feel like I learned something new today. Thank you. I must say that ever since I read about the choking, I have had a problem swallowing. lol


      anonymous 7 years ago

      Thank you for this great lens about mochi. I had not heard of it before. 5*


      Andy-Po profile image

      Andy-Po 7 years ago from London, England

      Very interesting.


      Mihaela Vrban profile image

      Mihaela Vrban 7 years ago from Croatia

      Something new to me! Excellent lens Barb!


      Fcuk Hub profile image

      Fcuk Hub 7 years ago

      A had only sushi not mochi. I believe it has to be very good. Congartulations to LOTD!


      WritingforYourW profile image

      WritingforYourW 7 years ago

      Great pictures and information! I've only had store-bought mochi, but it's a nice bread alternative for those of us trying to be gluten free.


      ZenandChic profile image

      ZenandChic 7 years ago

      Wow! That was quite interesting and something I had not heard of.


      anonymous 7 years ago

      congratulation for the lotd!


      Squidabbler profile image

      Squidabbler 7 years ago

      Excellent job documenting.


      anonymous 7 years ago

      l like


      nattyno 7 years ago

      I had never heard of this before , what a great way to get the family all together.www.squidoo.com/howtoquismoking


      RhondaAlbom profile image

      RhondaAlbom 7 years ago from New Zealand

      Congratulations on LOTD! How to make mochi was really interesting. And that giant badge looks really great up in the corner!


      Kiwisoutback profile image

      Kiwisoutback 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      I've never heard of this before, looks like a great tradition. Congratulations on LOTD!


      happynutritionist 7 years ago

      This is very interesting, I have never heard of this before. Congrats on LOTD, by the way.


      evelynsaenz1 profile image

      evelynsaenz1 7 years ago from Royalton

      Thank you for teaching me about the Japanese tradition of making Mochi and congratulations on making Lens of the Day as well as Giant Squid.


      delia-delia profile image

      delia-delia 7 years ago

      wow that is so much work! my neighbor in California told me about this tradition...very cool lens....5*


      profile image

      enslavedbyfaeries 7 years ago

      What a fascinating lens. I had no idea how much work is involved in mochi making and applaud the family for keeping the tradition alive. You did a really excellent job of documenting the process and creating this lens. I'm rolling this to my 'Cute Food: Kawaii Cooking' lens. Congratulations on LOTD!!


      mbgphoto profile image

      mbgphoto 7 years ago from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA

      very interesting lens. I enjoyed hearing about your experience!


      justholidays profile image

      justholidays 7 years ago

      Excellent lens, I really liked the process pictures and the entire story! I didn't know about mochi but I've learned something new today and I'm happy with it!Congratulations on your LOTD, Barb!Blessed by a SquidAngel.


      oneskms profile image

      oneskms 7 years ago

      Completely new to me, very well put across


      JenniferAkers LM profile image

      JenniferAkers LM 7 years ago

      I had never heard of mochi or its tradition before reading your lens. Fabulous pictures and explanation of your experience. Thank you for sharing this tradition with us. Congrats on LOTD - well deserved!


      Franksterk profile image

      Franksterk 7 years ago from California

      I've never heard of mochi but found it very interesting and I'm looking forward to trying some! Congrats on LOTD. Bear hugs, Frankster


      AnnaleeBlysse 7 years ago

      I'd never heard of Mochi until today...


      HorseAndPony LM profile image

      HorseAndPony LM 7 years ago

      Congratulations on LOTD! What a great lens. We love family traditions even if they are time consuming. Also, congratulations on making Giant Squid.


      KimGiancaterino profile image

      KimGiancaterino 7 years ago

      I've seen a mochi frozen dessert at Trader Joe's, but wasn't aware of how it was made. Quite a production! Thanks for sharing your experience. Sandy sounds like a beautiful person with a loving family.


      IntoVideos 7 years ago

      Great summary of a mochizuki celebration. It is something my family participates in every year. My wife being Japanese and having moved to the US only 8 years ago we want to keep this tradition alive and give the experience of the culture and fmaily aspects to our children. YOu did a great job of summarizing and documenting the process and are pretty accurate in your descriptions. Nice Lens.


      CastleRoyLisa profile image

      CastleRoyLisa 7 years ago from Rhode Island

      Congratulations on LOTD! this lens was so interesting I love reading on traditions and always love that you ad pictures great lens.


      dustytoes profile image

      dustytoes 7 years ago

      A wonderfully informative lens and your pictures are fantastic... the only thing missing is the mochi samples for us to try.. :)


      AuthorNormaBudden profile image

      AuthorNormaBudden 6 years ago

      To be quite honest, I feel as though I've gone through an ordeal just reading the lens. There definitely is so much work involved but, all the same, tradition dies when people stop participating in such practices as these.Blessed by an angel.


      Gloriousconfusion profile image

      Gloriousconfusion 6 years ago from United Kingdom

      Sounds like an awful lot of trouble, with huge equipment taking up a lot of storage space, for something which is not especially tasty as an end result! However I greatly approve of families involved in joint coooking enterprises - my family all enjoy cooking, and we often have a few of us in each others' kitchens, cooking stuff together - it is very companionable.


      jolou profile image

      jolou 6 years ago

      Barb, you left a comment about Sandy on one of my lenses a couple of weeks ago. Unfortunately I didn't see it until today. Normally I have my lenses set to approve all comments so I won't miss any, but had made a mistake on that lens.Cancer certainly is a terrible thing, I have a good friend with it now too. With God all things are possible, he is the great physician. Regarding your lens, this is the first time i've heard of mochi. Great photos and explanation. Really great lens also.


      jlshernandez profile image

      jlshernandez 6 years ago

      I have had store-bought mochi but never realized that the ones made from scratch are so time-consuming to make. My Japanese girlfriend says that it is good luck to eat mochi on New Year's Day. Thanks for sharing such an informative lens. It is like a thesis on mochi.


      Ramkitten2000 profile image

      Ramkitten2000 6 years ago from Flagstaff, Arizona

      At first, I was thinking you were talking about gnochi. Oops! But this was so interesting! And, wow, what a time-consuming process. Still, time-consuming doesn't mean pointless. Looks like it would a fun group project ... once, at least. :)


      kathysart profile image

      kathysart 6 years ago

      Fantastic!! I LOVE LOVE mochi. There is a truck stand in Hanalei, Kauai, Hawaii that makes fantastic poi mochi. I loved it so much that I figured out a recipe for it. I miss poi in California!


      emmaklarkins profile image

      emmaklarkins 6 years ago

      Wow! I love mochi, but I've never seen it made before!


      CCGAL profile image

      CCGAL 6 years ago

      I had never heard of nor seen this before today, but it was very interesting!


      poptastic profile image

      poptastic 6 years ago from Quezon City

      I've been enjoying mochi since I was a child but I've never seen it made from scratch! Had no idea that making it entailed a major production, wow. This lens is amazing, I learned so much about how the sticky glutinous-based rice dessert is made. ~Blessed~


      reflectionhaiku profile image

      reflectionhaiku 6 years ago

      Our kids love Mochi - cooked with sweet soup. There is even Mochi ice cream in Costco now.


      jackieb99 profile image

      jackieb99 6 years ago

      I want to try!


      TheRatRaceRebel1 profile image

      TheRatRaceRebel1 5 years ago

      Learning how to make mochi seems like quite a process.... but a fun one. Can't wait to give it a try.


      pheonix76 profile image

      pheonix76 5 years ago from WNY

      Great lens and a wonderful story dedicated to your friend. I loved reading about this new-to-me tradition and food. Perhaps I missed it, but I would like to know what mochi tastes like. :) Two thumbs up.


      gottaloveit2 profile image

      gottaloveit2 5 years ago

      How fascinating! What an interesting lens. I'm sure Sandy would be proud of your work.


      arunii lm profile image

      arunii lm 5 years ago

      What a detailed explanation on mochi. I loved the way of your writing


      Lee Hansen profile image

      Lee Hansen 5 years ago from Vermont

      I tasted mochi while visiting Japan on business ... nice to learn more about the traditional and cultural aspects. Thanks for sharing your story; it's a wonderful tribute to your friend.


      anonymous 5 years ago

      A very sweet tribute to Sandy and to the tradition of making mochi. This is an amazing process and time consumptive so It makes it even more an honor for you to have gotten to be a part of it.


      aesta1 profile image

      aesta1 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I love the way you made your lens especially because it is a special tribute to a friend.


      Nancy Hardin profile image

      Nancy Hardin 5 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      I enjoyed this lens and learned something new from it. Thanks for sharing.


      norma-holt profile image

      norma-holt 5 years ago

      This is something seen once on television and it struck me then that there was a lot of effort put in. Great infomative lens.


      kathysart profile image

      kathysart 5 years ago

      I've made Mochi with Taro in Hawaii a lot but not on the mainland as I cannot find the taro. I love love poi and taro so it is a wonderful addition to Mochi. Angel blessed lens!!


      anonymous 5 years ago

      Today we pounded mochi as a family with a traditional usu at our local Buddhist temple. We go every year and end up with about three pounds of fresh maru mochi. It's not only a family event for us every year but also for the community. There is nothing like pounding fresh steaming mochi rice under a big old ancient tree while hearing "yoisho!" in between swinging the giant wooden mallets. It's enlightening.


      anonymous 5 years ago

      I'm reading all kinds of new meals I've never tried, this is one of them but would like to have a bite.


      DeannaDiaz profile image

      DeannaDiaz 5 years ago

      Fantastic lens! Dedicating this lens to your friend Sandy brought tears to my eyes. Beautiful, I'm sure she would love it!


      BarbRad profile image

      BarbRad 5 years ago from Templeton, CA Author

      @DeannaDiaz: Actually, Sandy did get to see it and pass the link to her family members. This lens was published a good ten months before she died. Now it is my memorial to her.


      MelonyVaughan profile image

      MelonyVaughan 5 years ago

      Looks really delicious! I hope to try it some day... Excellent lens! Very kind of you to dedicate this lens to a friend of yours. God bless!


      dotpattern profile image

      dotpattern 4 years ago from West Village, New York City

      When visiting Japan around New Years, storekeepers were pounding mochi with a huge mortar and pestle out in the village square. Sticky, sweet and delicious..


      jd1797 profile image

      jd1797 4 years ago

      My grandma is Japanese and we ate mochi every year at New Years. Thank you for making this lens!! I can't wait to make some of my own.


      BarbRad profile image

      BarbRad 4 years ago from Templeton, CA Author

      @jd1797: If you're going to do it this way, I hope you've got lots of help. There were 50 people there the day I watched this.


      squidoopets profile image

      squidoopets 4 years ago from Abbotsford, BC

      Love to Sandy in Heaven <3


      kimark421 profile image

      kimark421 4 years ago

      I had never heard of it before. Now I am going to have to try it. Thanks for the great lens!


      BarbRad profile image

      BarbRad 4 years ago from Templeton, CA Author

      @kimark421: Good luck. I hope you have lots of help if you're going to try the traditional way.


      JoyfulPamela2 profile image

      JoyfulPamela2 2 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      Wow! This sounds so exciting, Barb! Thanks for sharing your experience.


      BarbRad profile image

      BarbRad 2 years ago from Templeton, CA Author

      It's amazing, Pamela, that you can know someone for forty years and never know about how they celebrate Christmas. Everyone just did their own family thing on Christmas and never really thought about how friends from other cultures spent Christmas Day.


      Sylvestermouse profile image

      Sylvestermouse 2 months ago from United States

      Barb, I am extremely sorry to read that your friend has died. I know you will cherish the memories of making Mochi with her forever, as well as many other wonderful memories of your friend.

      Making mochi certainly looks like it would take a great deal of dedication to continue the tradition, but what fun a family would have together.


      Wednesday-Elf profile image

      Wednesday-Elf 2 months ago from Savannah, Georgia

      So interesting to learn about this cultural tradition.


      BarbRad profile image

      BarbRad 2 months ago from Templeton, CA Author

      Many of these traditional celebrations take a lot of work and commitment. So did our Slava. But they also get family working together, and doing the work breaks the ice between family members who may not see each other very often.


      BarbRad profile image

      BarbRad 2 months ago from Templeton, CA Author

      As you might imagine, it blew me away. We thought we were just going to see a friend while she was with her family. We had no idea what we were about to experience besides that.

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