Strawberries, tsubuan, ice cream


There are some food combinations that you think just shouldn't belong together, but do so well. Strawberries with sweet beans? Surely not, you think, until you taste an ichigo daifuku - a strawberry wrapped in some azuki an and thin gyuuhi, a dough made of rice. I've had ichigo daifuku on my mind lately but have been too lazy to make the dumplings. This is a very easy alternative. Arguably it's even better.

You need some tsubuan, sweet azuki beans that have been roughly mashed. I recommend my not-so-sweet tsubuan, which is easy to make in batches; extras can be frozen. Or use storebought--you can find it at Japanese groceries.

You also need some ripe strawberries, which are in season now around here, marinating them in balsamic vinegar.

Put about 2 tablespoons of tsubuan in a bowl, and top with about 4 (or more) spoonfuls of sliced strawberries, with plenty of the syrup that it's in. Top with a little, or a lot, of vanilla ice cream, made with soy milk or cow's milk, whichever you prefer. (In this case I prefer a soymilk ice cream, which seems to fit better.) Let the ice cream melt over everything while you eat.

It's a cool yet quite filling snack for a warm day.

Filed under:  dessert japanese legumes summer vegan wagashi

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Hi..I really like anpan,shiroan and dorayaki...but this tsubuan with ichigo and ice cream looks so yummy...

Wow...I love daifuku, but I never thought of simplifying it and decontructing it this way! This is definitely going on my summer to-do list...but I might substitute the ice cream with chilled rice pudding instead, to keep in line with the gyuuhi in daifuku. Thanks, Maki!

Have you ever made tsubuan with another type of sweetener like honey or agave? I want to reduce refined sugars in my home but hate to experiment if somone else can give me a thumbs up or down.

Thank you!

I haven't tried it with honey or agave or other alternative sweeteners, but I don't see any reason why they wouldn't work in tsubuan, since tsubuan only partially relies on sugar for texture and body. You would have to adjust the amount of course depending on how 'sweet' the sweetener is. And the more additional flavors the sweetener has, the more the basic taste will be affected.

I'm going to try it in a couple of days, I'll let you know what I think. Beter yet, I'll let you know what my Japanese friends think.

Thank you, Maki!

I love this recipe so much. Whenever I want to show somebody that Japanese food is more than just raw fish and vinegared rice, this is a great way to expand their horizons.

Wow, this dessert looks so pretty and tasty! It's also a cinch to make so I think I'll keep it in mind :D Thanks Maki!