After making Brazillian Cheese Bread, I tried experimenting with Mochi Cheese Balls by substituting some of the tapioca flour with sweet rice flour. What I discovered was that the cooked dough tends to be more crumbly with the increased ratio of sweet rice flour. Sometimes a cohesive dough could not even be formed. When the egg is incorporated though, it becomes a smooth and elastic soft dough again. Dough with more sweet rice flour is also less sticky while rolling. I guess this is due to the water absorption level of the different kinds of flour.
I experimented with a 50/50 mix of tapioca flour and sweet rice flour dough two days ago. I have discussed about my findings on my facebook page (read about it, in Chinese, here). I warmed them in my toaster oven the next day. They still had a crunchy crust and a soft interior, but the texture had changed. So I reduced the sweet rice flour ratio to 30/70 and baked another batch yesterday. The texture remained soft and gooey when I warmed them in my oven today for breakfast. Below is my amended recipe which I adapted from my Brazilian Cheese Bread and my friend Bonnie from Devil’s Kitchen.
Mochi Cheese Balls
Makes 10 十個份量
80 g milk
40 g unsalted butter
1/4 tsp salt
80 g tapioca flour
30 g sweet rice flour (I used Mochiko flour)
1 large egg, slightly beaten
50 g Mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for sprinkling
Notes: The eggs I use are about 50 g each without shells.
糯米粉 30克 (EC用日本餅粉)
巴馬臣芝士粉 1湯匙(另加少量洒面用 )
Preheat oven to 350ºF/180ºC. Line baking tray with parchment paper. Shred cheese with a box grater (freezing the cheese for 10 mins before grating can prevent the cheese from sticking to the grater). Combine tapioca and sweet rice flour in a bowl and mix well. Set aside.
Combine milk, butter and salt in a saucepan. Set pan over low heat until the butter has melted. Turn heat up and bring mixture to a rolling boil. Remove from heat.
Immediately add the flour mixture in all at once and stir vigorously with a spatula or a pair of chopsticks until you get a dough that comes away from the sides of the pan.
Transfer the dough to a mixing bowl and cool slightly (I beat the dough with my mixer for a minute at low speed to cool it down). With a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add in half of the egg and beat with medium-low speed until incorporated. Add the remaining egg gradually and beat until the dough is smooth and elastic. Stir in the grated and shredded cheese until well combined.
Rub hands slightly with oil or wear vinyl disposable gloves to prevent dough from sticking. Divide the dough into 10 portions, about 31 g each. Shape each into a ball and place them on the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle with extra grated cheese powder.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until the doughs have puffed up and are slightly browned on top. I like to broil them for 1 to 2 minutes near the end until they are golden brown on top (adjust baking time accordingly as every oven is different). Remove from oven. Serve warm.
This is how my doughs rose in my oven after 5, 10 and 20 minutes. It was truly amazing to watch them puffing up without any rising agent or yeast! The dough expands solely due to the power of steam created when the water within the dough gets heated.
After about half a day the crust will become soft. Gently toast them in the oven for a couple of minutes and the crust will be crunchy again.
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