Kids Love Mochi for Breakfast!

Kids Love Mochi for Breakfast!

Cutie-pie nephew, Nicky

My four year-old nephew Nicholas has been visiting this summer from San Diego. During his stay in Tucson, we’ve had so much fun together. With lots of ¬†pool time, he’s been learning to swim, we’ve been practicing our Italian together (Nicky the pesce!), and he even created his first song, inspired by a recent thunderstorm.

Before his return to California this week, we asked Nicky what he thought about spending a night at Aunt Sharon and Uncle Seth’s house. He liked the idea, and together we planned the activities. First, we baked a cake together using Cherrybrook Kitchen mix. Then we had a “movie theater night” with air-popped popcorn (drizzled with Earth Balance); Nicky shared his popcorn with his canine cousins Otis and Galileo while we all watched Tangled. After the movie, the whole family piled onto the bed for storytime — we read Olivia, the story of a little pig with big dreams.

In the morning, we made mochi for breakfast. Mochi is a kind of Japanese rice cake: you can buy a small block of mochi, made by Grainassance, at Whole Foods. Although Alicia Silverstone has a great recipe for Pan-Fried Mochi in her book The Kind Diet, we baked the mochi in the oven because I thought it would be fun for Nicky to watch how, in a matter of minutes, the squares of dough puff up like magic. We kept the oven light on for him to see.

To make the breakfast experience extra fun, I put out little dipping bowls of agave nectar, brown rice syrup, and maple syrup. Mochi-dipping was a hit!