The origin of Imo-Mochi dates back to late 1800’s, when exploration of Hokkaido island started in earnest. Unfortunately, at that time, rice was barely cultivated on the island and Mochi, rice cake, could not be made. Therefore they used potatoes, which were abundant on the island, to make an alternative. Imo-Mochi was an important source of protein and carbohydrate for the pioneers to survive the severe climate and heavy physical labor. Today it has become one of the snack icons of Hokkaido and is enjoyed by many locals and tourists.
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*900g potatoes, washed and peeled
*135g Katakuriko (potato starch)
*1 tsp salt
*3 tbsp tinned corn
*2 slices bacon, shredded
*4 knobs Gouda cheese
*Freshly ground black pepper
*4 tbsp vegetable oil
*50ml soy sauce
*3 tbsp Katakuriko
*6 tbsp water
1. Cut the potatoes into quarters. Put them in a pot and pour enough water to cover them. Start heating the pot on a high heat. Once it comes to a boil, turn the heat down to medium and cook until tender.
2. Take the pot off the heat and drain the water. Put it back on the stove and heat on a medium heat to let the moisture evaporate, shaking the pot.
3. When the surface of the potatoes is dry and floury, transfer them in a mixing bowl. Add a teaspoon of salt and mash them up. Set it aside to cool down.
4. Meanwhile, combine 100g sugar, 50ml soy sauce, 50ml Mirin and 100ml water in a saucepan. Bring it to a boil on a high heat, then turn down to the lowest. Combine 3 table spoons of Katakuriko and 6 table spoons of water. Pour the water and Katakuriko mixture into the sauce and stir well on a medium heat until thickened.
5. Mix 135g Katakuriko into the mashed potatoes to make the dough. Make sure to do this once the mash has cooled down, otherwise the dough will be too sticky to work with.
6. Divide the dough into three equal parts and mix in the corn in one of them, and the shredded bacon and black pepper in another, while keeping the last one plain. Make four small patties out of each plain and corn mixture.
7. Divide the bacon mixture into 8 pieces, and wrap a knob of the Gauda cheese using two of the pieces, forming the same patty shape as the plain and corn.
8. Heat 4table spoons of oil in a large non-stick pan and cook the cakes on a medium heat until one side gets golden brown. Flip them over and put a lid on. Cook them for about 5 minutes until golden brown on the other side.
9. Take them out of the pan and dish up. Glaze the plain ones with the soy glaze. Wrap them up in crispy fresh Nori, when eating.