1tspcherry blossom powder, (or use two drops of red food colouring)
67gcup warabi mochiko, (bracken starch)
70gsugar, (increase by 1 - 2 tablespoons if serving without syrup)
50gkinako, (soybean flour)
In a large bowl, whisk together flours and sugar. Slowly and in small increments, add the hot water while stirring with a spoon or rubber spatula. Mix until it is evenly combined. Divide the dough evenly into three smaller bowls.
In a small bowl or cup, whisk together cherry blossom powder with approximately half a tablespoon of hot water until it has fully dissolved. In another bowl, do the same with the matcha powder.
Add the cherry blossom liquid to one of the reserved portions of dough. Add the matcha liquid to another. Mix well with a spoon until there are no more streaks of the cherry blossom and matcha.
Wet your hands with a little bit of water (to prevent the dough from sticking to your hands) and roll out little dumplings. You want to get about 8 - 10 dumplings per colour. Place rolled dumplings on a plate.
In a medium-sized pot, bring water to a boil. Once the water is boiling, turn down the heat to medium and drop in the white dumplings. Stirring occasionally, cook until the dumplings float to the top of the water, about 10 minutes. It is important that you keep stirring right when you add the dumplings or else they will stick to the bottom of the pot.
While the dumplings are cooking, fill a large bowl with cold water. Once the dumplings are floating and fully cooked, remove the dumplings from the water and immediately let them cool in iced water for a minute. After a minute, transfer the dumplings onto a plate.
Next, repeat the same steps for the pink dumplings and then the green dumplings. Do not be tempted to cook all the coloured dumplings at once because the colours may transfer to the white dumplings.
Once the dumplings have cooled, put one dumpling of each colour onto a skewer, in the order of green, white, and pink. Serve the day they are made and at room temperature.
Dust half of kinako over a small baking sheet. Set aside.
In a medium-sized pot, combine warabi mochiko, sugar, and water.
Heat the mixture over medium heat until the mixture begins to boil. Using a wooden spoon or a rubber spatula, stir the mixture vigorously for 10 minutes. The mixture will start off opaque but will slowly become translucent. The mixture should be very thick at this point.
Transfer the mixture onto the kinako-dusted baking sheet and try to spread it out as evenly as possible. The slab of mochi should be roughly 1-inch thick.
Dust the remaining half of kinako on top of the mochi slab.
Transfer the mochi to the fridge and let it cool for 30 - 45 minutes, until the mochi is lightly chilled. The mochi will be much easier to cut when it has cooled.
Once cooled, cut the mochi into 1-inch cubes. Serve immediately.
You can play around of your ratio of glutinous rice flour to regular rice flour until you reach the consistency and texture that you like. Traditionally, hanami dango is made with mostly joshinko/regular rice flour, but I like to use a bit more of the glutinous rice flour than regular rice flour so the dumplings are more tender yet still chewy. If you use 100% glutinous rice flour, the dumplings will be much more tender and will resemble Chinese tang yuan and they will have difficulty holding their shape on the skewer. Sometimes there are recipes for dango on the back the bags of joshinko flour. You can follow those steps too!For Warabi Mochi: Or follow the instructions on the back of your bag of warabi mochiko flour!The yield of 8 – 10 skewers of dango (each dumpling is about 1-inch wide)