By going through the preparation for markets and recent private order I had a chance to make ‘Shiro-An’ so I can finally post ‘How to Make’ it here.
‘Shiro-An’ is one of the main ‘An/Anko‘ Sweet Bean Pastes for Japanese Sweets which is made from white beans such as Butter Beans or White Kidney Beans. I used to think that it is just one type of Anko but since I started making wider range of Japanese Sweets I now realised that ‘Shiro-An’ is definitely the most important one among of all ‘Anko’ Sweet Bean Pastes.
Shiro-An is not just a tasty filling but it is also an essential ingredient for making Japanese sweet. Because it is 1. in white colour so that you can change it into any colour you want 2. having a very smooth texture, it is very versatile and basically it acts like a great shape shifter. It can be used in all sorts of sweets in disguise. My recent hit sweet ‘Ukishima’ and also ‘Nerikiri’ are just two examples that ‘Shiro-An’ is used into a different shape. Unless you are told you don’t realise.
So How do you make ‘Shiro-An (白あん)’/ White Bean Paste? Well, professionally it is a long process but I am going to show you the easier method. Some steps are omitted here but the product you get tastes very good. What you need is just patience and lot of care.
It’s a Halloween tonight! I live in England so I am going to be subtle in this more American tradition.
I have been thinking about making some kind of Japanese sweet in Halloween style but did not have much time. I managed to make this Daifuku in Ghost-like shape but it turned out more like the ghosts in the movie ‘Ghostbusters’
Halloween Ghost(busters) Daifuku
Hooray! I can finally post ‘How to Make Tsubu-An’ here, so after this post I will be able to start making more Japanese Sweets and post on this blog.
As I mentioned before ‘An’ (or ’Anko’, they are same thing) is the main component of Japanese Sweets. It is normally a sweet paste made of beans. There are mainly three types of An (Anko) used for Japanese Sweets and they are ‘Tsubu-An’, ‘Koshi-An’ and ‘Shiro-An’.
- Tsubu-An ; Made of Azuki beans
- Koshi-An ; Made of Azuki beans, sieved and skins removed
- Shiro-An ; Made of white beans, skinned and sieved
‘Tsubu-An’ has Azuki bean’s skin left and not sieved so it’s got more of a coarse texture among all the other ‘Anko’. And maybe because of this coarseness it is tended to be used for more casual Sweets. It needs less procedure to make Tsubu-An but that is not the reason I make this type more often. I like Tsubu-An’s texture the most. It is very versatile. If you are interested in making Japanese Sweets, Tsubu-An making is the great place to start.