“The Japanese word “daifuku” literally translates to “great luck”, and eating mochi is considered auspicious in East Asian cultures as stretchiness of the mochi represents longevity. Growing up, I loved eating these parcels of mochis because they’re so fun to eat; there’s always an element of surprise, and the chewy texture is so satisfying! Daifukus are traditionally filled with sweetened adzuki red bean, ground nuts, or an piece of fresh strawberry. This version, however, is filled with luxurious chocolate truffles. Heavily inspired by Alice Medrich, the truffles are soft, creamy, and chocolatey. They contain neither added sugar nor added cream, so the purity of the bright chocolate flavor really shines. The addition of the cacao nibs creates a lovely crunch as well. This recipe is an ode to Alice Medrich; without her, we probably wouldn’t know truffles in America!” – Sam
Yield: about 20 truffles
1 digital thermometer
1 deep pot
2 wide metal bowls
2 fine sieve strainers
1 rubber spatula
1 balloon whisk
1 microwavable glass bowl
1 plastic bowl scraper
1 wooden paddle
1 measuring cup
1 rolling pin
1 circular cutter (3.5 inch if possible)
1 size 70 scooper
454g TCHO 62% Mosaic Dark Chocolate*
144g Unsalted Butter, cut into small pieces
2g Sea Salt
2 Egg Yolks, at room temperature
4 oz Warm Water
TCHO Roasted Cacao Nibs, for rolling the truffles
270g Mochiko Rice Flour (TCHO Pro Tip: regular rice flour will not work here!)
160g Cane Sugar
3g Sea Salt
362g Whole Milk
2 tsp Vanilla Extract
72g Glucose Syrup, Rice Syrup, or Corn Syrup (optional, see note below)
Potato Starch, for dusting
- Set up a double boiler. Fill a deep pot with around 1-2 inches of water, place on the stove on low heat, and place a wide metal bowl on top. Make sure the bowl is wide enough to cover the entire pot.
- In the metal bowl, add all of the chocolate, butter, sea salt, and melt. Take caution that the water underneath the bowl doesn’t get too hot (it should just be simmering, not boiling). If it does, add a cup of cold water to bring the temperature down. Continue stirring chocolate mixture with a spatula so everything melts evenly. Check with a thermometer; you want the melted mixture to reach a temperature between 120-130oF.
- Once the chocolate mixture reaches 120-130oF, take off the boiler and set it aside. Place a fine sieve strainer over to get it ready for the next step.
- In another clean, wide metal bowl, add the egg yolks and warm water. Whisk to combine.
- Place egg yolk mixture on the double boiler, whisking continuously (but still gently. You just want to temper the eggs, not incorporate air into the mixture). Heat the yolk mixture until it reaches 160oF and remove from heat.
- Pour the yolk mixture directly over a fine-sieve strainer and into the chocolate mixture.
- Gently tap sieve to pass through all the egg yolk mixture, but do not push anything through the strainer (this will help make sure your truffles stay super smooth and creamy).
- Vigorously whisk the entire mixture with a balloon whisk for about 1 minute. You want the mixture to be shiny and satiny. It should look like a chocolate pudding at the end of whisking.
- Once you reach the correct consistency, refrigerate for an hour while you move on to the next step.
- In a microwavable glass bowl, add the mochiko flour, cane sugar, and sea salt. Stir to evenly combine.
- Measure milk in a measuring cup. Then, in 5 parts, add the milk into the dry mixture, and stir with a wooden spoon. Adding the milk in separate parts is crucial to make sure that there are no lumps. At the end, give it one more vigorous stir to get rid of any lumps
- Then, add the vanilla and syrup. Stir once more to combine.
- Cover the entire bowl with a microwave-safe plastic film. Microwave on high for 5 minutes.
- Once ready take it out of the microwave. Be careful, the mochi and bowl will be very hot. With the wooden paddle, vigorously mix the mochi so it becomes elastic and stretchy. Depending on the strength of your microwave, you might see a small liquidy puddle of uncooked mochi. If you see this, cover the bowl with plastic again and microwave for 1 minute. And then stir again. The skin should be shiny and almost translucent. Cover and set aside.
- Place potato starch in a fine sieve, and generously dust a clean work surface with the potato starch. Then, with a plastic scraper, scrape the hot mochi onto the dusted surface. Dust the top of the mochi with more potato starch
- Dust your rolling pin with potato starch, and gently roll the mochi skin to an even ⅛ inch thickness. Gently check that no mochi is stuck to the table. Use additional potato starch if needed.
- Using a circular cutter (ideally around 3.5 inches in diameter), cut out circles from the mochi. Dust them with more starch, stack, and set aside.
- Check to see if your chocolate truffles are ready for scooping. The chocolate mixture should be the consistency of a firm cookie dough, not be so liquidy that it wouldn't hold its shape and not so firm that you can't scoop it. If it’s too liquidy, refrigerate for 10 more minutes. And if it’s too firm, just leave it out at room temperature to soften.
- With a size 70 scooper, scoop truffles out and set aside on a tray. Dip the flatter side into the cacao nibs. Set aside
- Take one piece of the cut-out mochi skin and set it on a surface. Using a dry pastry brush, gently dust off any remaining potato starch on the mochi skin.
- Place a truffle in the middle of the mochi skin with the flatter side facing down. Then, take two opposite edges of the skin and pinch it together closing at the top of the truffle. Then take the other two remaining edges and pinch together at the top as well. You should have 4 “ears” hanging out now. Take the edge corner of those ears and pinch together in the middle again. Repeat for the remaining corner pair. It should now look like an 8-pointed parcel all meeting on top center of the truffle.
- Enjoy the finished daifukus immediately! If enjoying them at a later time, make sure to refrigerate the daifuku in an airtight container. And take them out 15 minutes before consuming to soften the texture.
TCHO Pro Tip: The syrup ingredient is completely optional, but it makes the chewiness of the mochi skin a bit softer and more supple. The rice syrup and corn syrup (which is not the same as high fructose corn syrup) are readily available at Asian supermarkets, and the glucose syrup is easily available on Amazon.