Archive for dessert

Goodness Gracious, Great Balls of… Mochi???

Posted in Fancy Food Show with tags , , on January 30, 2010 by massapeel

Back at the Fancy Food Show, we trudged — ok, that’s got too negative a connotation — meandered, perhaps, through aisle after aisle of Italian specialty food.  Had some amazing stuff – most notably (but which I failed to photo) was a series of tapanades containing black and white truffles.  Delicious. 

Although, as an aside, I have to admit that not everything there at the show was delicious.  In fact I had one product that was downright disgusting:  black truffle macaroons.  OK, so I guess the nausea factor is in part my fault for complicitly tasting this drek, but in my defense, I thought that it was a creative, savory macaroon…  some blend of ingredients that omitted sugar for other binding agents and herbs, etc…  needless to say I was WRONG.  It was a regular old macaroon (french style – like a puffy sandwich cookie that is a smooth crusted cookie with a chewy, slightly spongy and gooey, insanely sweet interior — like a dessert macaroon, but with black truffle!?!?!?!?!  Someone must have been on something when he/she decided to meld those flavors.  It was truly one of the more disgusting things that I have ever tasted.

OK.  enough negativity – just wanted to inject some realism, so that you all don’t think that I am one of those people who gives everything a 10!

Bubbies Mochi - balls of yum!

Back to my stroll through Little Italy….  Next to the Rao’s booth (which was in fact 5 booths), there was this small unassuming ice cream cart full of delicious little nuggets that I have never seen before:  mochi.  Now, one would have thought that I’d know what mochi are, having visited Hawaii twice, and having a girlfriend-in-law of something like 7 years who is a Kona native.  But, I must admit that I have never seen, let alone tasted, mochi.

What is mochi?   Technically it is “decimated sticky rice” – or, sticky rice that has been ground up so that it no longer resembles rice at all, but more of a thick paste – like poi (a taro root paste indigenous to Hawaii), for anyone who has had that. 

Mochi ice cream is a slightly-smaller-than-ping-pong ball sized dollop of ice cream encased by this sweetened rice paste confection, and then frozen. 

The mochi ice cream that I encountered at the Fancy Food Show was the product of Bubbies Homemade Ice Cream Deserts of Hawaii.    

cross-section of Bubbies mochi ice cream treats

And they were great.  The mochi virgin has no idea what to expect, and will be pleasantly surprised by the chewy outer mochi shell (which could be compared in texture to marzipan, or fondant icing), which keeps the sinfully creamy scrumptious ice cream inside cold and firm.  

And another thing.  Each ball is a mere 1.25 ounce, so it is a 2-3 bite treat (or a one-bite treat for the glutton who is not daunted by brain-freeze), so it is even acceptable for those of us counting Weight Watchers points!  Just be sure to have enough restraint to only eat one!

So.  Some details regarding Bubbies.  Funny name for a Hawaiian company, right?  The founder, born and raised in New York state, named it for his grandmother, who introduced him to his love of ice cream.  He moved to Hawaii for school, and remained, introducing the 50th state to his amazing creamy treats. 

As for Bubbies Mochi Ice Cream, we are lucky enough to have access to nineteen flavors (give or take, depending on specials):  azuki bean, blueberry , chocolate coconut , chocolate espresso, chocolate mint, chocolate peanut butter, chocolate vanilla, green tea, guava, lychee, mango, passion fruit, pistachio, raspberry white chocolate, sakura (cherry blossom flavored mochi paste), strawberry, strawberry dark chocolate chip, tiramisu and vanilla.  I can vouch for the flavors that we tasted:  green tea, azuki bean, lychee and chocolate espresso, the last of which was my unexpected fave…  I can only assume that the excellence of these 4 flavors is carried through to the other 15!

Oh, and by the way, not only did these make my “L List” – I learned as I was writing this that these treats made Oprah’s O List in June of 2006!  Get some sent to you today: