Tuesday, September 01, 2009
Ah, these cakes almost make me cry from nostalgia. Mushipan was one of a few homemade desserts my mom used to make when I was very small.
No, it's not that my mom was terrible at baking or making desserts. It was just not a popular thing to do in olden days in this rural area. When my grandma was young, this place was nothing but a poor village, and sugar was a luxury for most farmers and fishermen. With some exceptions, sweets were usually something to be bought at stores on special occasions. And my mom's generation was the one that experienced the extreme poverty and starvation after WWII in their childhood. So, you see why not many dessert recipes have been handed down in my family? (It was in her early fifties that my mom learned to make jams and sugared orange peels and to bake bread.)
Anyway, I can recall three desserts mom used to make when I was a kindergarten kid, which were: very simple pancakes, doughnuts and mushipan. She made the pancakes and doughnuts from scratch, but used "mushipan mix" (pre-mixed baking mix) to make her mushipan.
I really like the ones made from the mushipan mix because they are so light, so fluffy and not too sweet (and darn easy to make). But I couldn't find the baking mix at our regular supermarket the other day, so I tried out a recipe from that Japanese recipe site again.
These home-made ones were pretty good, too, but much heavier than the ones made with the mushipan mix.