Who can resist soft, chewy mochi? Not me! This boiled muah chee (mochi) is made from 3 simple ingredients: glutinous rice flour, water, and sugar. I served it with sweetened toasted peanuts for a delicious treat.
Muah chee or sometimes spelled as ‘muar chee’ is a delicious treat I looked forward to at the night market (pasar malam). These have a touch of shallot oil. They are steamed then cut into pieces before tossing in sweetened peanut or black sesame powder. Although a bag only costs less than $1 but the joy of holding it is priceless.
The above is the most common type of mochi I know growing up along it loh mai chee (another post for some other time). The second is tang yuan – glutinous rice balls. It’s a must-have for the Lunar New Year and weddings. These are now widely available at the store in the freezer section and boba or shaved ice shops as toppings.
Today, you’ll see a different kind of muah chee that’s popular street food in Taiwan.
What is boiled muah chee (mochi)?
Boiled muah chee or mochi is a large version of a glutinous rice ball (tang yuan). It’s made from glutinous rice flour and water then rolled into balls. They are cooked in a caramelized sugar water until they puff up. You can enjoy them as-is or roll onto a variety of sweetened powder. Some of my favorites include peanuts, black sesame, matcha, cocoa or even crushed oreos.
As you can see, the preparation is very similar to tang yuan or dango but different than the mochi filled with ice cream. This recipe is easier to handle and you can enjoy this sweet in no time.
Important notes before you start
1. Glutinous rice flour absorbs water really slowly. So please do not add all the water at once but rather do it gradually with each knead.
2. To make the peanut topping, use a high-speed blender for a finer powder or food processor for a coarse texture. Please do not blend for too long or it will turn into peanut butter.
3. These muah chee are meant to be served right away for maximum softness and chew texture. If you wait too long it will start to harden a little. So, cook the portion size that you need. Store the uncooked muah chee in a freezer or refrigerator.
How to make Boiled Muah Chee (mochi)
Part 1: Prepare the toppings
Place toasted peanuts in a high-speed blender or food processor. Blend until fine and sweetened with sugar. I find that a high-speed blender gives a finer powder compared to a food processor. Please note that blending the peanuts too long will turn them into peanut butter, so watch the process closely.
Part 2: Prepare the dough
I’m using Thai glutinous rice flour and it’s available at major Asian grocery stores or online. The package is clear with a green border while the rice flour is red, so please pick the correct one. Place glutinous rice flour in a bowl.
Add 2-3 tablespoons of water to a small amount of flour. Knead that portion until you can form a golf ball size dough easily that weighs about 30g.
Now, cook this dough in hot water until they turn matte white or until it floats up. I also divide this dough in half to speed up the cooking time. This step is to increase the softness and binding of the dough.
Place this cooked dough back in the flour bowl and knead to mix the flour together while adding the water. Stop kneading once the dough is formed. Divide into 12-14 equal pieces.
Rub your fingers with glutinous rice flour. Take a dough and pinch it into a circular wrapper. Now, this may sound weird but seal the dough like you have a filling in the middle. This step is to create air pockets so the muah chee is soft, chewy and not dense. Be sure to cover the rest of the dough with a dish cloth while working.
Part 3: Cook the muah chee (mochi)
To make the caramelized sugar water, place sugar in a heated tall pot or wok. Stir until the sugar has melted and turned amber, about 10-12 minutes. Slowly add the water, be careful as the sizzle may splash. The sugar will crystalize. Bring it to boil and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
Before cooking the muah chee, dip it in a bowl of water to wash off excess flour. Cook the muah chee until they puff up, about 1.5X the original size. It’s normal that the muah chee turns yellow.
How to serve boiled muah chee (mochi)
1. Serve as-is with the sugar water, just like tang yuan.
2. Use it as topping for shaved ice
3. Serve with sweetened peanuts or black sesame or matcha or cocoa powder.
Other savory glutinous rice recipes
This boiled muah chee (mochi) is
- Easily customizable
- soft and chewy
- A delicious and perfect treat for any day of the week!
If you try this recipe, I would love to hear your feedback and see your beautiful re-creation. Leave me a comment, rate it, and tag @woon.heng and #woonheng to your photos on Instagram or Facebook. Happy cooking, friends!
Boiled muah chee (mochi)
- 240 g [2 cups] glutinous rice flour plus more for dusting
- ½ – ¾ cup water
- 1 cup toasted peanuts
- 1 tablespoon sugar
Caramelized sugar water
- ¼ cup sugar
- 4 cups of water
- To make the peanut topping, blend toasted peanuts in a high-speed blender or food processor. For finer peanut powder, please use high-speed blender instead. Empty it into a bowl and season with a tablespoon of sugar.
- Measure 240g of glutinous rice flour in a large bowl. Add about 2-3 tablespoons of water to a portion of the flour. Knead it into a golf ball size dough, about 30g. Divide this into two to speed up the cooking process if needed.
- Now, fill a 1.5 qt pot with 2 cups of water and bring it to a boil. Drop the raw dough in the hot water and cook until it floats up or turns matte white.
- Using a sieve, scoop the cooked dough and transfer it back to the bowl with flour.
- Using your fingers, pinch the cooked dough while you knead it into the flour to mix. Gradually add the water and knead into a soft dough. Divide into 12-14 equal pieces.
- Rub your palms with glutinous rice flour. Take a dough and roll it into a ball, then pinch it into a circular disk. Now, pinch to seal the opening leaving an air pocket in the middle. This will create a softer and less dense muah chee. Repeat until all the dough is done.
- Next, make the sugar water. Heat a wok or tall skillet and add the sugar. Using a spatula, stir to melt the sugar until the color turns amber. Add the water and stir to combine, then bring the mixture to a boil until the sugar has dissolved.
- To cook the muah chee, dip it in a bowl of water to wash off the excess flour. This step will create a smoother outer layer.
- Slowly drop them into the sugar water. Cook all the muah chee until they puff up to 1.5x of the original size.
- To serve, sieve out the muah chee to a plate and top with the sweetened crushed peanuts. Reserve the sugar water for sweet soup or to make ginger sugar drink.
- I toast my own peanuts using the red skin peanuts. Then, I removed the skin.
- Sugar is pure cane sugar