A while back I was playing with agar agar and wanted to recreate the famous raindrop cake but with my own personal touch. Raindrop cake is popular in Japan and better known as mizu shingen mochi and is now familiarized here in the States thanks to New York based chef, Darren Wong.
By itself, traditional raindrop cake is pretty plain, but visually appealing which is why it’s so popular. It’s actually pretty simple to make too. Traditionally it is served with roasted soybean flour, kinako, and brown sugar syrup, kokumitzu.
Agar agar is an algae derived substance and commonly used in light Japanese desserts. It also makes a great gelatin substitute for those of you who eat a plant base diet but it should not be treated like gelatin. A little goes a long way and if you use too much it will become too firm and a little synthetic tasting. If you’ve ever had bubble tea with almond jelly cubes or any other flavored jellies in your milk tea it’s made from agar agar. This entire time you’ve been sucking on algae and now your life is a lie. HA!
In my recipe, I decided to use a cherry blossom extract so the dessert would be delicate and pleasant tasting on it’s own, not just visually intriguing or… confusing. Raindrop cake is one of those desserts that looks impressive but needs the assistance of other components in order to try to hide the fact that it’s just boring agar. I will say Wong repackaged it here in the States and now every Yelper and wannabe chef is clapping like a retarded seal over it.
I added pastry grade glitter to my recipe as well because I wanted to, in my pathetic attempt, emulate the reflection of the sun when it hits a raindrop on a cherry blossom. Deep!
Whether or not you recreate this version of raindrop cake or take some sort of inspiration from it, I hope you enjoyed learning about it none the less. I’m not going to ignore the fact that it looks like a breast implant either. The original cake does too. You guys are just perverts but despite my efforts I can take a laugh and troll myself.
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- 400 ml filtered water
- 2 grams agar agar
- 5 grams sugar
- 1-2 drops cherry blossom extract
- 1 extremely tiny drop of pastel pink food coloring gel
- Pastry Grade Glitter - optional
- In a small saucepan, combine agar agar, sugar and filtered water.
- Whisk until dissolved.
- Turn stove on and continue to whisk until completely dissolved at low heat.
- Remove contents from pan and place them into a heat proof container.
- Once mixture is luke warm add extract, food coloring then pastry glitter.
- Place carefully into 2 3.5 cm sphere molds (will link where I purchased mine).
- Chill in the fridge overnight.
- Carefully remove and serve immediately.
- Adding extracts to extremely hot products will cause it to evaporate.