Potato Mochi – Michael Ryan | Dani Valent

Potato Mochi – Michael Ryan

Pillowy potato pucks cooked by one of Australia's top chefs

I first saw chef Michael Ryan’s delicious potato mochi when he posted a photo on Instagram. I almost jumped in my car and drove three hours up the highway to snaffle them up. They looked so good! When I eventually did get to Beechworth, home of Michael’s wonderful Provenance restaurant, I was thrilled when he offered to share this recipe.

Michael’s food takes much inspiration from Japan and this dish is no different. Mochi are soft round snack-sized pucks, usually made from pounded glutinous rice, sometimes stuffed with bean paste or jellied fruit. Mochi are usually sweet but savoury ones are sometimes seen. Michael’s version achieves the distinctive pillowy mochi texture by using whipped potatoes and a little potato starch.

The richness of the potatoes is reined in by the glaze, lightly salty and a little sticky, the gloss amplified by the nori, which adds texture and flavour as well as being a useful handle.

Makes: about 14
Time: 1 hour

Ingredients

Mochi – Traditional

  • 700 grams (24.7 oz) Dutch cream potatoes, peeled and cut into even pieces
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons cream
  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons potato starch
  • salt, to taste
  • oil for frying

Glaze

  • 100 ml usukuchi shoyu (light soy; see Tips)
  • 100 ml mirin
  • ½ tablespoon sugar

To serve

  • nori, cut into strips 6cm x 2cm

Mochi – Thermomix

  • 700 grams (24.7 oz) Dutch cream potatoes, peeled and cut into 3cm (1 in pieces)
  • 40 grams (1.5 oz) butter
  • 40 grams (1.5 oz) cream
  • 2 spring onions, roughly sliced
  • 2 eggs
  • 80 grams (3 oz) potato starch
  • salt, to taste
  • oil, for frying

Glaze

  • 100 ml usukuchi shoyu (light soy; see Tips)
  • 100 ml mirin
  • ½ tablespoon sugar

To serve

  • nori, cut into strips 6cm x 2cm

Traditional Method

1. Cook potatoes in salted water until tender.
2. Pass through a ricer
3. Add the butter, spring onions and cream, then the egg and potato starch. Mix well. Season to taste, remembering you will be coating the cakes in a salty glaze.
4. Leave the mix to cool a little, then portion into round flat cakes, around 50 grams (2 oz) each (or larger if you want).
5. Heat oil in a pan and fry over medium heat, on both sides to achieve a light brown finish and to cook the cakes through.
6. To finish, add glaze ingredients to a frypan and heat over medium high heat. Add the cakes and cook until the glaze reduces and coats the cakes.
7. Remove from the pan and wrap a piece of nori around each cake. Eat hot.

Thermomix Method

1. Place potato pieces in steamer basket. Place 600 grams (21 oz) water in mixing bowl and insert steamer basket. Cook for 25 min/Varoma/speed 2 or until tender.
2. Remove steamer basket and tip water from mixing bowl. Insert butterfly. Add potatoes and mix 20 sec/speed 3.
3. Add butter, cream and spring onions and mix 20 sec/speed 4.
4. Add eggs, potato starch and a pinch of salt. Mix 30 sec/speed 4, or until smooth. Taste for seasoning, remembering you will be coating the cakes in a salty glaze.
5. Leave the mix to cool a little, then portion into round flat cakes, around 50 grams (2 oz) each (or larger if you want).
6. Heat oil in a pan and fry over medium heat, on both sides to achieve a light brown finish and to cook the cakes through.
7. To finish, add glaze ingredients to a frypan and heat over medium high heat. Add the cakes and cook until the glaze reduces and coats the cakes.
8. Remove from the pan and wrap a piece of nori around each cake. Eat hot.

Tips

  • You’ll hear Michael Ryan talk about different types of Japanese soy, or shoyu. In this recipe, he prefers usukuchi shoyu, or light soy. The darker soy is called koikuchi shoyu. Here’s a great primer on different types of soy.

More about this video

I filmed this video at Beechworth Honey in Victoria’s High Country. See my High Country travel videos.

I went on the road with chefs and sommeliers from MoVida as they sourced produce for two High Country Harvest events. It’s always such an enriching – and tasty – experience to visit food at its source, and I loved seeing it through the eyes of some of the country’s most talented and dedicated cooks and wine guys.

The High Country is a large and varied region in Victoria’s north-east, about three hours from Melbourne. People often think of it as a place for outdoorsy activities, and there’s certainly plenty of skiing, cycling, horse riding and bushwalking. But I am passionate about discovering destinations through their food and drink, and the High Country certainly lets you do that. It’s not just that the food and wine is great (such as at Michael Ryan’s Provenance restaurant), it’s also that the people producing it are dedicated (even dogged!) and super passionate about doing what they do where they do it.

A girl’s gotta get dressed. Today I’m wearing Obus.

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