Sunday, 18 December 2011

green tea mochi, raspberry compote, lime yoghurt

December... the festive month. Are you a Christmas person?

I don't really regard myself as a Christmas person... I don't go to church, I don't go on a gift-giving frenzy, and I don't tend to go out of my way to eat traditional Christmas dishes - but I do enjoy the festive spirit, and the cheer in the air, at this time of the year.

I like that my colleagues and I have Christmas stockings hanging in our cubicle pods, and we leave candies, chocolates and cookies for each other, just as a token of appreciation, and just because it's Christmas.

I like the pretty decorations and the carols. These are not things I do, but to those of you who make the effort, thank you. You make my days brighter.

And I didn't know whether I would have my parents and my boyfriend with me in Melbourne for the holiday season this year, but it turns out I will most likely be spending Christmas with all of them, together. I like that very, very much.

I'm a lucky, sappy girl, am I not? Perhaps I'm a Christmas person after all.

green tea mochi, raspberry compote, lime yoghurt.

Whether you're a Christmas person or not, though, I'm hoping you'll like this dessert I whipped up recently.

For my just-in-time-for-Christmas recipe post, I wanted to create something natural (no artificial colours!) and delicious with those classic Christmas hues - a little green, a little red, a little white. I succeeded with this little dessert, and I am happy to be able to share it with you here.

I'll tell you a few things about this dessert.

1. It's probably one of the easiest things you can make consisting of green, red and white, while still adhering to the must-be-natural-and-delicious rule.

2. The combination of sweet-and-tart raspberry compote and luscious lime-infused Greek yoghurt is so, so lick-off-the-plate-worthy.

3. Cute little gluten-free green mochi dumplings are full of win. My round ones are fashioned with a nod to the upcoming Chinese winter solstice / Dongzhi festival (冬至) celebrations - this is when my family traditionally eats glutinous rice balls / tangyuan (汤圆).

4. Feel free to multiply the recipe so you can share it with loved ones. It's what I hope to do, now that I've ascertained that this dessert concept can be transferred successfully to reality...

just before cooking: green tea mochi balls, or tang yuan - glutinous rice dumplings made with matcha.

raspberry compote, green tea mochi, lime yoghurt
(serves 1 - 2)

You can make all these separate components hours ahead and keep in the fridge, then put them all together when ready to serve.

for the raspberry compote:

1 cup raspberries (125g), fresh or frozen
1/2 tablespoon raw sugar

Bring raspberries and sugar to boil in a saucepan, then simmer, uncovered, for 5 - 10 minutes until sweet and syrupy.

for the green tea mochi / tang yuan / glutinous rice balls:

1/4 cup glutinous rice flour + more for flouring/dusting
1 tablespoon fine sugar (I used raw sugar here, too)
3/4 teaspoon matcha (powdered green tea)

Combine glutinous rice flour, raw sugar and matcha in a bowl.
Boil some water and add the hot water very, very gradually to the dry ingredients, stopping once it reaches a kneadable consistency. You'll probably end up using less than 2 tablespoons of water. If you overdo it, you'll just have to make up for it by adding more of the dry ingredients again to the mix.
Prepare your hands and your working surface with a dusting of glutinous rice flour.
The final green tea dough should be soft and smooth. When you work with the dough, it shouldn't be so dry that it's cracking apart, and it shouldn't be so moist that it's leaving sticky bits in your hands.
Pull off small pieces of the dough and roll into little marble-sized balls.
Bring a pot of lightly salted water to boil, then throw in the green tea mochi balls one by one in rapid succession.
Scoop them up with a strainer when they start floating up to the top.
Carefully plonk them down onto a surface coated with more glutinous rice flour (with a bit of icing sugar if you like it sweet), and roll them around until they are lightly covered and no longer sticky. Gently brush off excess flour.

for the lime yoghurt:

1 teaspoon lime juice, and a pinch of zest if you have an organic lime
1 teaspoon honey - or a light, casual drizzle
1 cup Greek yoghurt

Whisk lime and honey into Greek yoghurt till well-combined.

to assemble:

Spoon Greek yoghurt onto a plate or into a bowl. Top with raspberry compote and green tea mochi balls. Voila, you have your very own red, green and white Christmas treat!

lime yoghurt, raspberry compote, green tea mochi.


  1. OMG YUM!!!! That looks amazing!

  2. Oh so cute! They look very festive and sound delicious.

  3. Oh man... This recipe is SO awesome, Leaf!!! I'm so happy for you that your efforts to materialise this creative festive idea into reality turned out to be a huge success!!! I often have "recipe ideas" in my head that may have been planted for weeks but when I finally get the chance to try them out in the kitche, they turn out to be either kinda weird or a flop, more often than not. Hahaha... No worries though because I do find humour in my failed attempts lol.

    Anyway, your photos are really getting better and better. I enjoy eating tangyuan after a big family dinner during the dongzhi festival so to be able to incorporate that after another heavy, festive, family meal this Christmas is so great. The yoghurt sure makes it lovely to eat after a heavy meal too. Thanks for sharing, Leafy!! =D

  4. Thanks Ms Jelena!

    Thanks Foodycat, I was definitely going for festive. :D

    Oh Winston, I have my fair share of weird flops... sometimes I struggle to pull something decent together in time to post at least once a week! With Dongzhi festival just round the corner, hope you have a good one with your family!

  5. a modern twist to a trad chinese offering. :)

  6. Leaf, another exquisite post from you. Love it and always look forward to reading your blog.

  7. What a clever idea, and how delicious this sounds. I need to get on the mochi wagon, pronto. If only it would slow down a teensy bit, I could throw myself onto it:)

    I'm glad you get to spend the holidays with your loved ones - I won't be spending this Christmas with my parents, so I definitely understand the desire to do so.

  8. You could say that, Michelle! :)

    Thank you Lizzy! :)

    Thanks Emma! It's really easy to make once you start and get a feel for it. I hope you'll have a lovely festive season regardless and that you get to see your parents soon, another time. xx

  9. I love the inventiveness of this recipe. I would never have thought to put these flavour combinations together. Definitely going to try the lime yoghurt and raspberry compote.

  10. yum! i need to get some mochi for my yogurt!

  11. I love it! An offbeat tribute to the season.

  12. I have never tried mochi balls before but these look so lovely and festive! Have a wonderful festive time with your family!

  13. Thanks Mandy! It's a nice combination, especially if you're fond of tart flavours as I am.

    Go for it, the actor's diet!

    Thanks Anh. :)

    Thanks Cindy, that's the idea. :D

    Thank you Anna, you can get mochi toppings at quite a few fro-yo outlets (especially those run by Asians) these days, if you want to try them. They're sticky and chewy. Happy festivities to you too! :)

  14. Beautiful, beautiful! I won't be allowed to make this for Christmas, as we always do he very traditional Christmas dinner (even when it's bloody boiling outside :P ) but considering my mum's allergies and my parents' and my love of Japan and mochi, I'll be bookmarking this to try later. Thank you, dear Christmassy one! (You totally can't deny that title :P )

  15. Love lick-off-the-plate-worthiness! This looks great. I'm not Christmas person either, but thanks for sharing.

  16. sounds so weird! i am intrigued by the green tea balls, and the flavour combination.

  17. MMMM! I love the look of that mochi. Delicious combination, Leaf.

    I'm not really a traditional Christmas person either. As long as I have loved ones and great food around, I'm happy. Like you, I feel really lucky to have my sister visiting from Holland for Christmas this year, and my fiance and his family too :)

  18. That looks so yum! I need to try this.
    I had never had matcha until I went to a sushi train in japan, it's such a great idea though. Is it easy to find in Australia?

  19. Thanks Hannah! This is totally for any time of the year. :D

    Thank you The Food Sage. Perhaps this can be a dessert for those of us who don't really do a traditional Christmas. ;)

    Heh, muppy. It's not that weird, try it! :p

    Thanks Yasmeen. Sounds like you'll be having a wonderful Christmas - yay! :)

    Thanks Emily! I got my matcha from a Japanese grocery store, but the more general Asian grocery stores might also have them. :)

  20. With the beautiful colours your dessert certainly is in the Christmas mood! It looks very original and since I'm a big matcha fan, I am sure I would love at least the mochi balls.

  21. Lovely photos! So festive! Have a wonderful holiday with your loved ones :)

  22. So beautiful Leaf :) Loving every little thing you do!

  23. Hmm, with all that red, white and green - I think you just might be a little Christmassy after all. Lovely post.

  24. the colours are so wonderful. i like it . thanks for sharing.

  25. Thanks Sissi! I do adore matcha in desserts. :D

    Thanks Renee, and the same to you. :D

    Thanks Cass! :)

    Thanks Amanda, a little guilty as charged. ;)

    Thanks Loveforfood! :)

  26. Mmm mochi. I'm a sucker for mochi, I could eat it all day every day. The flavours would be perfect together. What a great creation!

  27. This looks amazing and reminds me that I want to make ice cream mochi but perhaps I should start with regular mochi first!

  28. What a gorgeous, delicious looking dessert! Everything about it is up my alley. I'm also with you that while I'm not a super Christmas person I do enjoy the spirit of this time of year.

  29. What a great idea! Love it... going to steal this idea k?

  30. Thanks Apple!

    K - yes, I imagine a fairly basic mochi like mine here could be good training! :p

    Thanks Katherine. It's such a nice atmosphere, I agree.

    Go for it Penny! :)

  31. This looks really good!
    What an amazing thing about stockings at pods! I'm so stealing this idea for next year :)

  32. I love that this is in the traditional colours but is such a non traditional dessert. Looks delicious.

  33. Love the colours in this dish. Sounds really original too!

  34. Thanks msihua! Yeah, you know, we like stuffing around. ;)

    Thanks Gourmet Chick. I do like the juxtaposition of the traditional and non-traditional. :D

    Thanks Scott. :)

  35. Although I'm partial to green tea anything except the actual tea, these looks much more appetizing than the traditional winter solstice tang yuans in clear syrup. Christmas is all about being sappy girl!

  36. Sounds like you're a Christmas person after all. :-) Enjoy spending time with your boyfriends and your family for the holiday.

  37. Thanks Pretty. Good. Food.!

    Thanks pickyin! I like the traditional ones but it's fun to go non-traditional as well. :D

    Thanks Slyvie. Happy holidays to you too!

  38. Wow, looks fantastic! My mouth is watering already. Merry Christmas!

  39. This looks fantastic!! I've never tried mochi, but I love green tea, so I am sure I will love them. Merry Christmas.

  40. Looks delicious and so much healthier than the dessert I ate for Christmas! Enjoy the holidays!

  41. ¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨°º
    ¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨° ·.°ºº
    ¸.•°`♥✿⊱╮FELIZ 2012!!!

  42. This looks absolutley delicious. I can't wait to try it! Although Christmas is technically over, I think it would be accepted at any time of the year. Thanks for the post! x

  43. I am crazy over tong yuen and have tried many different kinds. Have not tried a green tea one though. I will definitely try this someday. Beautiful shots. Happy New Year to you and your family.

  44. Thanks Sarah! Merry Christmas!

    Thanks Jennifer. I think you'd like them! Merry Christmas!

    Thanks Marc, hope you're enjoying your holidays too!

    Obrigada, Magia da Inês - Feliz 2012!

    Thanks I ♥ food and travel. I agree this is an anytime thing (as long as you have the ingredients)!

    Thank you Quay Po. Yay for tangyuan love! Happy New Year to you and your family, too!


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