J.sweets shop inside Mitsuwa Japanese Market
San Jose Store
675 Saratoga Avenue,
San Jose, CA 95129
Mochi Cream, a delectable soft ice-cream confection desert created in Japan, combines the softness of sticky sweet glutinous rice (Mochi) with heavy cream and a filling that has the consistency of jam, jelly, or (is) ice cream. This combination of opaque sticky rice dough, heavy cream, and filling produces a texture as smooth and silky as eating a custard-filled doughnut, but the Mochi’s rice dough is not as sweet, hard, rough, flaky or dry as a doughnut. In fact, the Mochi’s soft dough somewhat compares to the clear rice skin on Dim Sum chive dumplings or Har Gow shrimp dumpings with their smooth satiny dough consistency. Some could say eating a Mochi compares to eating a cold marshmallow filled with creamy jam. When room temperature, this dessert could be poked and behaves somewhat as a plastic bag filled with liquid hand soap, able to be patted and shaped and held without the inside contents spilling out if handled with enough tender loving care.
The actual name of this store in Japan is “Mochi Cream” to coincide with the frozen confection Mochi Cream desserts. Mochi Cream also sells what appears to be frosted doughnuts and pound cake. The actual dessert products are imported to the United States frozen via Air Mail from Kobe, Japan.
Connoisseurs of Mochi Cream often savor the freshness and variety of tastes of this sweet treat. Served frozen, Mochi Cream offers a refreshing taste of different flavors of fillings without the heavy spoonful ice cream serving since each Mochi Cream piece just has perhaps a teaspoon of jelly or jam filling inside. Flavors come in a wide assortment, some with a distinct Japanese ingredient: Chocolate, Double-Mango, Black Sesame, Peach, Sakura (a fruit), Darjeeling (a tea), Strawberry, White Chocolate, Raspberry, Blueberry, Green Tea, Café Au Lait, and Vanilla. Each Mochi flavor has the same size diameter of about two inches. At around $1.80 to $3 each, the Mochis don’t come cheap, but the price for the experience of fresh Mochi Cream from Japan compared to store-bought frozen ones should at least be tried. After all, fresh food sure beats the taste of frozen food.
The filling in itself separates fresh Japanese Mochi Cream bought at the shop’s counter display glass case from most of the frozen packaged ones found in supermarkets. The Mochi Cream shop’s fillings are usually not just frozen-flavored ice cream, but soft gel or jelly jam just as in a jelly donut. The jelly often has the real ingredients of the flavor of Mochi (blueberry, strawberry, chocolate, etc.) combined with a sugar medium which is not just food coloring, flavor, ice and cream as some supermarket packaged brands. As such, shop Mochi Cream looks and is softer than supermarket Mochi Cream and often lacks the rough hard cold ice crystals that could ruin the flavor and textural experience.
The Double-Mango Mochi comes in a peach-filled sticky rice ball colored a slight orange and powdered with white sugar. Cutting the Mochi in half at room temperature reveals a white layer of surrounding heavy cream and a mango goo with tiny chunks of mango inside. The Mochi has all the highlighted flavors of mango as the gooey gel and tiny bits of fruit add for a nice delectable treat. The taste of heavy cream, silky rice dough, and mango goo hits the palate all at once for a very sweet light taste. The cream and goo melt from the heat of the mouth while the dough needs some soft chewing before going down the throat. There is no crunch of ice or anything hard even though the Mochi has been bought frozen.
The Blueberry Mochi doesn’t come with bits of blueberry inside. Instead, the goo is a bit thinner and resembles grape jelly that colors the dough a slight blue. The interior goo is also surrounded with a layer of heavy white cream.
The Peach Mochi mimics the same filling as the Blueberry one and has a pale orange exterior.
The Raspberry Mochi’s filling comes with little crisp wafers in it while its exterior has a slight pink color.
All four Mochis I bought (Peach, Raspberry, Blueberry, and Double-Mango) come with a gooey filling that is surrounded by heavy white cream and a powdered sugar exterior and all taste exactly as their flavor advertises. At room temperature, the fresh Japanese Mochis don’t have the cold sting of ice cream to the mouth, teeth, or stomach when eaten.
Japanese Mochi Cream from the counter shop doesn’t have the taste of any candy or ice cream since each one has its own unique interior filling. One could say store-bought Mochi Creams taste just like the ice cream flavor because it often is filled with ice cream of that flavor whereas shop Mochis have their own distinct filling ingredients and flavor. The shop Mochi’s tastes are often sweeter, fresher, and lighter than supermarket box packaged Mochi due to the absence of ice and milk in the gooey ingredient filling. When bought from the counter sweets shop, the Mochi is actually taken from reserve stock (not from the counter display case) and placed in a white cardboard box, frozen. Employees recommend a wait of 20 minutes to allow the hard frozen Mochi to thaw first before eating.
The absence of ice crystals really plays a key part in experiencing the freshness, softness, and silkiness of shop Mochi Creams imported frozen direct via Air Mail from Kobe, Japan to the counter sweets shops of the United States.