Butter mochi is one of my favorite childhood desserts- it was a staple at family gatherings when I was growing up. It's a dish that traveled with my family and friends from Hawaii, where my Dad was raised.
The Hawaiian islands are a melting pot of cultures; from native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander, Portuguese, Japanese and everything in between. This blending of cultures has resulted in an entire cuisine, of which butter mochi is just one delicious result. It's said to be a combination of Japanese mochi and Filipino bibingka, a sweet coconut rice flour cake.
This butter mochi recipe has another layer of complexity- the addition of tahini, one of my favorite Middle-Eastern ingredients. I've added black and white sesame seeds as well for their extra crunch and nutty flavor. —Kristin Eriko Posner
1 hour 15 minutes
stick unsalted butter, softened
sugar (I used organic coconut palm sugar)
each roasted, ground black and white sesame seeds (reserve half for sprinkling)
almond milk (you can also use regular dairy or any other alternative milk)
Butter a 9" square cake pan well- make sure to butter the sides all the way to the top.
Preheat the oven to 350°
In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip softened butter. Slowly add in sugar until well-incorporated, scraping down the sides a couple of times. Add the eggs in one by one, then the vanilla extract then the tahini. Turn the speed down to slow and pour in the sesame seeds until just combined.
Whisk together the milk and coconut milk in a separate bowl.
Whisk together the mochi flour, baking powder and salt in another bowl.
On low speed, add the milk mixture into the butter and sugar mixture, scraping down the sides of the bowl a couple of times.
Turn the speed up to medium and start adding the dry ingredients into the wet, scraping down the sides of the bowl a couple of times again.
Pour batter into the cake pan and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until the butter mochi begins to brown on the sides and turn golden on top. Rotate the pan a couple of times during the cooking process to make sure it cooks evenly.
When it's done cooking, allow it to cool to room temperature, then invert it on a cutting board. Gently turn it over and sprinkle the remaining sesame seeds on top. Cut in to 1.5" squares and enjoy! It will keep for a couple of days in the fridge.