That recipe above comes courtesy of Gemma’s Bigger Bolder Bakes. We chose it because it looks simple, straightforward and easy to do with minimal tools. This all turned out to be true, but there are a couple of things we discovered first-hand when we had a go at this ourselves.
Step 1: Make your ice cream balls
Grab a baking sheet and line it with greaseproof (or parchment) paper. If you don’t have a baking sheet or you’re only making a few mochi balls, you can use a plate big enough to fit in your freezer. Then, you’ll need an ice cream scoop if you want to make big mochi balls, or a smaller egg spoon if you want your dessert to look more like Little Moons.
The recipe says that all you need to do is scoop up the ice cream as you usually would and place it on the parchment paper – but when we tried this, it led to half-spheres that looked a bit misshapen. The best method we found is to get a big fat chunk of ice cream or sorbet on your spoon or scoop, then use your fingers to press it in. Once transferred to the parchment paper after using this method, the balls looked much healthier and more round.
You don’t need to worry too much about where you place them on the parchment paper and you don’t need to leave too much room between them, either. As soon as you’re done, get them straight in the freezer to make sure you don’t have any melty bits.
- Passion fruit ice cream, from our local independent shop
- Raspberry sorbet, from Tesco
- Mango sorbet, from Waitrose
- A standard ice cream scoop, but we would recommend this ice cream scoop, because it’s not too large.
Step 2: Make the sweet rice flour dough
Measure out 160g rice flour into a microwaveable bowl and add 225ml of water. Mix with a whisk or a fork. It might look a little lumpy, but those lumps will smooth out in time. Stick your concoction in the microwave for 60 seconds.
Remove and whisk for a second time. Make sure the mixture has the chance to cool properly before putting it back into the microwave for another minute. At this point, it should look like a thick, opaque white paint but it’ll have a thin, watery texture. That’s all right – just trust the process.
For the final time, place your mixture back in the microwave, this time for just 30 seconds. When it’s done, it should look like a glossy, sticky dough. Remove and stir again but this time with a wet plastic spatula or wooden spoon – it’ll immediately stick to a metal whisk or fork. Add your colours or flavours here. If you’re making more than colour or flavour, you’ll need to divide the dough evenly into three different bowls and add the flavours and colours separately.
- A sweet rice flour from our local Asian market, but this sweet rice flour has good reviews on Amazon.
- A rosewater from our local Asian market, but you can find a similar rose essence in Waitrose.
- This orange extract from Waitrose
- Normal food colouring that had been lying in the back of the food pantry for years. We would recommend this extra-strong food colouring instead. You only need to buy the primary colours, then you can use them them to mix any other colours you might want.
Step 3: Roll the sweet rice flour dough
Now that you should have a dough that’s both pretty and tasty (or plain, if that’s your thing), it’s time to roll it out. Lay down a fresh sheet of parchment paper onto a work surface and sprinkle generously with cornflour. You will need more cornflour than you think so use it liberally! Coat your rolling pin with cornflour as well. If you don’t have a rolling pin, you can use any object that’s long and cylindrical – this article offers some good household alternatives for rolling pins.
Your dough will try to stick to the rolling pin and it’ll be a bit of a battle to get it laying flat (use more cornflour). Once you’ve nailed the thickness (check out the verdict below for more on this), transfer to a baking sheet (or wide plate) with the parchment paper still attached. Repeat for any other dough flavours you might have.
The final step in the dough-making process is moving all the dough sheets to the fridge (not the freezer!). The recipe says you should let the dough chill for at least thirty minutes, but we advise leaving it in for as long as possible. We actually left ours overnight, and it turned out beautifully.
Step 4: Assemble the mochi ball
The next thing you’re going to want to do is cut your dough into circles. You need to eye up your scoops of ice cream and work out how much dough you’ll need to wrap around them, then find a pastry cutter that matches that size.
Glass ramekins, jam jars and wine glasses are good options for getting the right size dough circle, but it’ll vary a lot based on how large your ice cream balls are. Cookie cutters will only work if you’ve made quite small ice cream scoops.
Also read: Mochi Ice Cream – Kirbie’s Cravings
The next step is semi-optional, but we recommend it. Cut your dough into balls using whatever cutter you’re using and then put them back in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. You want the dough to be as cold as possible when it wraps around the ice cream, otherwise it’ll dissolve into a sticky mess.
With your circles of dough ready, take your ice cream out and start wrapping the dough around them, working very quickly. Before you wrap each one, dust off any excess cornflour. You want to take the roundest, prettiest side of the ice cream and put that down into the dough first, leaving any flat or misshapen bits on the side that you’re going to seal. This way any imperfections won’t be visible from the top.
The sealing bit is incredibly difficult and we’re convinced there’s no trick to it – you just need to make the two sides of the dough meet and then smush it together with your fingers as best you can.
Step 5: Allow mochi balls to rest
You’re going to want to put each mochi ball into a cling film wrap so that it retains the shape. Then, the recipe recommends that you transfer each one into a muffin tray or egg box. We used a normal plate because we didn’t have enough space in an egg box and they turned out just fine.
Leave to set for at least two hours – or they can be stored for up to one week in the freezer. Before serving, you want to let them sit out in the open air for at least five minutes before letting people tuck in.
Through this article, we hope to help you understand Mochi ice cream balls