Food Forum
Vol. 28 No. 4  January 2015




Mochi glutinous rice cakes are a traditional Japanese food, but may be difficult to swallow for those unfamiliar with their thick, chewy texture. This combination of melted mochi and cheese, both soft and sticky, creates a rich fondue-like texture that is easy to eat.


Makes 8 appetizers

112 kcal  Protein 4.2 g  Fat 2.5 g (per piece)

  • 1 mochi glutinous rice cake, approx. 50 g /1.8 oz.
  • 2 t vegetable oil or more
  • 8 cm- / 3 in.- long piece of daikon, peeled and cut into 8 rounds
  • 2 t Kikkoman Soy Sauce or more to taste
  • Shichimi-togarashi seven-spice chili pepper or cayenne pepper
  • Fresh thyme, or other preferred fresh herb
  • 2-3 green onion stalks, finely chopped
  • Total 50 g / 1.8 oz. shredded semi-hard cheese, e.g. gouda or cheddar
  • 3 pimiento-stuffed olives, each sliced into thirds


  1. To prepare mochi, cut in half and then into thin slices.
  2. Heat vegetable oil in a frying pan over low to medium heat, add slices of daikon and cook until lightly browned on both sides. Turn off heat. Using paper towels, pat oil from the daikon and wipe excess oil from the pan.
  3. Sprinkle 1 t soy sauce over the daikon; warm again over low heat and turn slices over, then sprinkle with the remaining 1 t soy sauce. Turn off the heat and turn the slices over again to coat evenly with soy sauce.
  4. Sprinkle the daikon with a pinch of shichimi-togarashi; add a pinch of fresh thyme.
  5. Lay out daikon slices in a dish lined with baking paper. Place three or four mochi slices atop each grilled daikon.
  6. Grill in a toaster oven or broiler* at medium heat until the mochi becomes slightly puffed. Remove pan to add green onions and cheese, then continue to grill until the cheese melts.
  7. Garnish with a slice of olive on top of each canapé.

* A microwave oven may be used for Step 6 with a microwave-safe dish. The method remains the same.

Recipe by Michiko Yamamoto

1 C (U.S. cup) = approx. 240 ml; 1 T = 15 ml; 1 t = 5 ml

This recipe was inspired by “The Japanese Table” feature article “Washoku: Social Customs and Observances” included in this issue.