Thursday, July 21, 2011

Anmitsu - Japanese dessert

Dear bed,
You're so warm and toasty, and I almost wish you weren't this comfy making it so hard for me to get up in the morning.

Dear rain,
Please can you re-think your forecasted long stay this week?

Dear pizza delivery boy,
Please don't deliver anymore pizzas to my place. *burp*

Dear treadmill,
You make me sweaty and my heart beat faster than anything else. And you challenge me like no-one does. That's why I like you. 

Dear friend,
Thank you for your 'surprise'. Now I can watch Ugly Betty and The Mentalist whenever I want!

Dear poodle in cooking with dog,
Your hair is slightly wonky at times but I admire your patience and self control whilst your owner is cooking.

Dear Australian winter,
Your baldness (on trees) is starting to appeal to me. I also like how I can turn up my heater and eat summertime desserts when you're around too. 

Have you seen the youtube cooking videos: cooking with dog

I've been a fan for a while now. Not just because I am fascinated by a sleepy poodle who sits by the stove like a rock, but I adore all the mouth-watering Japanese dishes featured on this channel.

So remember how I was sick a few weeks back? I watched the clip for Fruit Cream Anmitsu then and it immediately took me back to my unforgettable Japan trip (where I had anmitsu every single day) and I wanted to recover from the flu faster than anything else. (Talk about the most effective 'medication'!)

Anmitsu is a popular Japanese dessert made of small cubes of agar agar in a brown sugar syrup. It is also served with sweetened red bean paste, pieces of gyuhi (mochi-like sweets) and a scoop of ice-cream. Oh and decorated with seasonal fruits too. Yummo!

Ok, wanna see how it's made?

First you'll need to make some agar agar. Not flavoured or sweetened. Simple as!

Then dice them up into dainty fine translucent that it's almost like they're invisible!

To make the kuromitsu (Japanese sugar syrup) to go with the agar agar, you'll need to melt some dark brown or muscovado sugar with corn syrup.

Pour it onto the agar agar...

To make the gyuhi (which is a type of traditional Japanese mochi), get some glutinous rice flour in either powdered form or granules...

...add a bit water to the rice flour and heat it up and eventually you'll get something like this...

To prevent the glutinous rice flour mixture sticking to everything else, you'll need to dust some potato starch all over!

Then you make some ankosweet red bean paste (just because red beans and green tea ice-cream are a match made in heaven!) If you don't have time, just buy them canned (sweetened) at your local Asian grocery store. Recipe (or rather, another youtube video with the poodle) for anko can be found here.

Then it's just a matter of slicing up the oranges wedges and strawberries...and adding a scoop of the green tea ice-cream! You might want to use an ice-cream scoop for this. Sadly I don't own one. I wonder why? Definitely not because I eat ice-cream out of the box! How unladylike!

If you generally love Japanese desserts and can never get enough of the red bean and matcha (green tea) combination, I think you might totally adore this...even on a cold winter's day :)

Fruit Cream Anmitsu
Serves 3
  • 4g/0.141 oz Agar Powder
  • 500ml Water (2.11 us cup)
  • 1 tbsp Mizuame - Thick Starch Syrup (I used light corn syrup)
  • 100g Kurozato - Muscovado or Unrefined Brown Sugar (3.53 oz)
  • 70ml Water (2.37 fl oz)
  • 30g Shiratamako - Glutinous Rice Flour (1.06 oz)
  • 50g Sugar (1.76 oz)
  • 60ml Water
  • Potato Starch
  • 3 Strawberries
  • 3 Navel Orange wedges
  • 3 tbsp Anko - Sweet Red Bean Paste (buy canned or recipe here.)
  • 3 scoops of Matcha Ice Cream (I bought mine but you can make it using this recipe)
  • 20-30 Boiled Aka Endomame - Red Endo Beans (I omitted this).

The simple instructions for the recipe can be found from the linked videos! :)

Watch them! They're kinda...cute?! 

Might also make you want to get a dog to cook with too!

Have a blessed week ahead :)


  1. Delightful post! Hard to imagine your winter as we are having such hot temps and NO rain. High of 100 F today!

    This recipe sounds so unique. Very colorful. I just watched Cooking with Dog making Ebi Chili that looks so delicious! Thanks for the link! Maybe I can train my schnauzer to be my partner as I cook/bake! His favorite foods are fruit (bananas, apples, berries...)

    I am wondering if potato starch is similar to corn starch?

    Hope you are having a great week :)

  2. Wow....a very new and different dessert. Very refreshing :)

  3. This would be an AWESOME dessert for the heat we are all in! Great unique recipe! Thanks for sharing!



  4. Dear Viv,
    Thank you for this delightful post! As it is a very hot summer here in Florida, your refreshing Anmitsu is so appealing! Lovely!

  5. Great pictures and a delicious dessert! Thanks for sharing!

  6. What a beautiful post! This dessert looks perfect for summer here - it reminds me of a Taiwanese dessert that is darker in color. An old childhood neighbor used to make it. Have you heard of something similar in Chinese cuisine?

  7. I have my winter blues too, starting the day with all the wet moody sky... Seeing this bright colored dessert definitely cheer me up. What a delightful presentation!

  8. I'm truly fascinated by this recipe. The way it combines beans into a dessert and makes it look delicious, really blows my mind. If I could only find agar agar around here...

  9. I love anmitsu and always order it when it's on the menu. Your version looks beautiful; I can't believe you made your own mochi.

  10. Me too a big fan of cooking with dog. I agree that Francis' self-control is unreal. I'd never imagine cooking a meal with my two cats sitting besides me, patiently.
    I've never had anmitsu before but I am very interested in trying this recipe. The presentation is simply gorgeous!

  11. I've been wanting to make anmitsu for ages now. I've never tried it but just from looking at the many pictures and recipes I've seen, I knew I would love it.

    glad to see that you also share my love for it! and what a beautiful anmitsu you made.

    ps. I'm currently ill and stuck in bed, so thank you very much for the link to Cooking with a dog. Saved my day!

    xx fanny

  12. Lorraine: Thanks! Yikes, sounds really hot over there - hope you're finding ways to cool down!

    Hey I watched that Ebi Chilli clip as well! Hope you train up Raider well enough to be your partner in cooking lol. That paints a funny image in my head with him trying to steal the fruits while you're cooking! haha.

    I just checked online and it seems like potato starch and corn starch are interchangeable! They're both used as a thickening agent for gravies etc as well as used in baking!

    Priyanka: Thanks...yes it's quite different to the usual desserts we normally come across!

    Amy: I can imagine wanting to eat this everyday in the heat too! haha. Thanks!

    Lisa: Thanks Lisa! I'm jealous of all your lovely summer produce in Florida atm! haha.

    Maris: Thanks :)

    ricekernel: Thanks! Are you talking about grass jelly?! Or this other jelly that's kinda yellow-ish in colour with lime juice?!

    Zoe: Thanks :) We'll get thru the winter blues eventually....haha.

    Yadi: Aww, hope u do find agar agar...should be able to find them in most Asian grocery stores?! Red beans are very common in Asian desserts :)

    OohLookBel: Really!? I haven't seen any anmitsu in restaurants here! You should def try making your own mochi....its super quick/easy!

    Yi: OHHH that poodle is called Francis? Are you kidding? No wonder in the video the voice over always says "Hi I'm Francis...." I didn't know that he was supposed to be the voice of the poodle lol. I know right, Francis is amazing...the Jap are great at training their dogs :D

    fanny: I hope this will give you a little push to making your own anmitsu soon esp its summer over there :) i'm sure you'll make an ever better one than i have! Glad to hear that the videos are entertaining you on sicks day :D get well soon girl :)

  13. I love watching cooking with that poodle. It's comically entertaining and very educational.
    I just ate and I am so stuffed but your step-by-step pictures just sped up my gut to lightening speed! It's cheerfully Japanese. The awkwardly unmatching ingredients giving off a surprisingly zenful experience.

  14. Aww cute post! I always smile when I come here.

    I love any dessert with red beans so I need to try this!

  15. I adore Japanese desserts because they are never too sweet! This is delicious!

  16. This looks so good!!!! I want some now! *sigh* It's been too long since I last had ice's too cold! I haven't watched cooking with dog- though I do remember reading about it on a few blogs and the recipes always sound delicious! Maybe I should watch it too ;)

  17. Drooling over your cool dessert. Wish we have a little of your winter here! It's si hot!

  18. But an ice-cream scoop means you can eat it by the whole scoop-ful and not just a spoonful! =p

  19. sugoi! sugoi! well done Viv!

    ps. i also love Cooking with Dog...

  20. I love this kind of dessert and I still remember the first time that I was introduced to it in Japan. Yours look awesome, perfect for this time of the year.
    Hope you have a great week Vivienne :-)

  21. This looks so unbelievably good, but really far out of my realm of expertise. So fun to look at and admire though. Sadly, I'd probably have to spend an entire day just figuring out the right way to make the agar agar. And then the mochi would be a whole new ordeal.

  22. Wow! In my years in Japan, I never knew the yummy Japanese jelly was agar agar! And I'm going to have to check out this cooking with a dog thing on YouTube! Looks fun!

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