Mochi is fantastic stuff, it can be savory or sweet. When made into desserts it has a nice familiar ‘chew’ that let’s you know mochi is a key ingredient. These are dense little cupcakes with just a little sweetness.

1 (1 lb) box mochiko
1-1/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
1-1/2 cups milk
3/4 cup oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 (16 oz can) an – sweetened red bean (optional)

Mochiko can be found in most japanese markets, it’s a white flour, in a one pound box. Really useful to keep in your pantry, you can use it for a lot of other recipes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prep a cupcake pan with liners. I get about 18 cupcakes out of this recipe.

Mix all the ingredients together, EXCEPT the an, in a bowl.

IF you are using the an, only fill the cups about 1/2 full, add a teaspoon of an, then cover with more batter. If you don’t want the an, just fill the cups 3/4 of the way full.

Bake for 30-40 minutes depending on your oven, until you get nice little slightly browned tops. Let cool on a wire rack. Now these are best, just like this, dusted with a bit of powdered sugar. However, I was making these for New Year’s Day and added a little something extra.

I made some kagami mochis out of fondant, iced the cupcakes with a lemon frosting and stuck my little fondant creations on top. They were festive for the party and were a fun nod to the tradition of New Year’s Day mochi.