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Sakura Mochi

Sakura mochi with a red bean filling and fresh or preserved sakura leaf are a traditional Japanese treat served during spring time.
Author: Remy Park


  • 1 cup sweet glutinous rice
  • 3/4 cup filtered water
  • 1 tsp beetroot juice
  • 1/2 tsp sakura powder
  • 2 tsp organic cane sugar
  • 1/4 cup red bean paste chilled
  • 4 pickled sakura leaves


  • First begin by preparing your rice. Soak your rice overnight in cool water, making sure there's ample water on top of the rice (so that all grains are covered).
  • Mix together water, beetroot juice, sakura powder and cane sugar and set aside.
  • Soak your sakura leaves in warm water and let sit while you work on the rice.
  • Drain the rice and remove all excess water then transfer to a food processor. Pulse a few times to break down, but avoid pulsing too much. You want coarse, broken rice, but not a flour.
  • Add the broken rice to a large, microwave safe bowl and add your beetroot water mixture to the bowl. Cover with a damp kitchen towel and microwave for 2 minutes. Mix with a spatula, cover and microwave for another 2 minutes. Rice should be nice and sticky, and you should be able to pull it away from the sides of the bowl with the spatula.
  • Divide the rice into 4-5 equal parts and using damp hands, roll each piece into balls. Cover with a damp towel when not in use.
  • To assemble, grab one portion of mochi rice, flatten into a large circle in your hands and scoop about a tablespoon of red bean paste into the center. Fold edges around the center and tightly press so that no red bean paste escapes.
  • Take a sakura leaf, pat dry and wrap your mochi with the veins and stem facing outwards.
  • Repeat until all of the rice has been used! Let the mochi sit for about 10-15 minutes to absorb the sakura leaf flavour and enjoy.