koi no tsubomi: elderflower-citrus anmitsu

This was a dessert inspired by Koda Kumi’s song of the same name; the meaning of it in Japanese literally translates to blossoms of love. When I first heard the song, it was from the Driving Hits 7 soundtrack, so it was remixed and sounded really foreboding and intense. I didn’t quite like it. But then I heard the super cute and upbeat sounding original version, and totally fell for it to the point where I had to create a dessert inspired by it. So here we go. I thought about a dessert that would be somewhat cute to serve on a first date at the end of a nice dinner, and that’s why I came up with anmitsu.

Anmitsu is a mixture of bean paste, kanten jelly, syrup, fruit, shirotama mochi balls, and some sort of cream, and it is delicious. For my rendition, I went with honey, citrus, and elderflower, and included homemade bee pollen cornflakes to add another crunch that is typically found in modern Japanese parfaits, something that anmitsu is similar to. For my components, we have elderflower-honey gelee, honey shiratama mochi, bee pollen cornflakes, elderflower-citrus shiro-an (white bean paste), citrus syrup, orange segments, and elderflower Chantilly. So you know, simple shit. It actually is really simple. The only things that take time are ironically the bean paste and the cornflakes. Everything else can be made al minute with very little issues.

Processed with VSCO with c1 preset
Processed with VSCO with c1 preset

For the shiro-an:
1 can white beans; drained
half the citrus syrup
1 cup water

Blanch the beans in water to remove any additional brine, for about 3 minutes. Strain then pass through a sieve. In a pot, reduce half of the syrup down and mix in the bean mixture. Continue whisking over medium-high heat until the mixture thickens considerably, about 3-5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until set.

For the cornflakes:
3/4 cups corn powder
1 tablespoon bee pollen
1 tablespoon honey
1/3 cup water
a pinch of salt

Dissolve bee pollen into the water. Combine ingredients and pour between two silpats. Bake at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes, then at 275 degrees F for another 30 minutes. Break apart into smaller flakes once cooled.

For the shirotama mochi:
1/3 cup mochiko
3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon elderflower liquor
1 teaspoon honey

Combine 3 tablespoons of the mochiko with 2 tablespoons of the water and microwave for 20 seconds. Combine that dough with the remaining ingredients and form into a log. Cut the log into thumb sized pieces then press to indent. Boil in water until they begin to float, then transfer to iced water until it is time to serve.

For the gelee:
2 tablespoons elderflower liquor
2 tablespoons honey
a pinch of salt
1 cup water
2 1/2 tablespoons agar agar powder

Simmer ingredients and pour into a small, square shaped container. Refrigerate until set. Cut into 1/8th inch squares.

For the syrup:
2/3 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup orange juice
2 tablespoon oranges zest
2 teaspoon elderflower liquor

Bring to a simmer. Strain out the zest and chill.

For the Chantilly:
1/3 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon elderflower liquor
1 teaspoon orange zest

Whip together into stiff peaks.

For assembly:
To garnish, have orange segments ready.

Place the mochi down first, followed by the segments, gelee, cornflakes, then anmitsu, then finally, the Chantilly. Serve the syrup on the side.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s