Saturday, October 16, 2010

Donabe Steamed Sake Manju

The weather has been pretty cool lately. It makes me feel like more donabe steaming.
My donabe steamer, "Mushi Nabe", is not only great for savory dishes, but I enjoy making sweet dishes with this donabe also.

I made a traditional Japanese sweet, "Sake Manju" (or we also call saka-manju). Sake Manju is a sweet dumpling with the sake-flavored skin and anko (azuki bean paste) filling. There is no dairy, so it's naturally a vegan dessert.

To make the dough for the skin, you mix the flour (I use whole wheat flour), baking powder, sugar, sake, and sake lees. Sake lees are called "Sake Kasu" in Japanese, and it's sold in either hard or soft paste. It's basically a leftover of sake production (what's left after draining the liquid after fermentation). Sake kasu still retains wonderful sake aroma and it's used in different dishes, such as soup, marinade for fish, etc. With the dough, I wrapped the anko (azuki bean paste) from Hokkaido, which I mixed with roasted walnuts.

In just 10 minutes of steaming with the donabe steamer, the Sake Manju were ready. The aroma was just so wonderful. It's like smelling sweet sake!

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Once they are done, the manju were transfered to a basket and cooled down with a hand-fan (just for a minute or so, to cool down the skin). I love this dessert so much. It's good right after it's made (while hot), as well as next day. I eat it after dinner as a dessert, in the morning as breakfast, and afternoon snack. Sake manju can make a nice small gift when you visit someone.

You can find the recipe of Sake Manju on toiro's website. (I just added it!)
Happy donabe life.

PS: White Mushi Nabe from current inventory has just sold out today, but black is still available (just a few). We will have more units shipped from Iga, Japan, very soon!