The 3rd of March marks the Girl’s Day Festival in Japan, known as “Hinamatsuri”, so to celebrate this festival I made Three Colour Dango, or “Sanshoku”. The dango are less sticky than mochi and have more of a soft, bouncy texture. They’re also much easier to eat because they’re served on a skewer so you don’t have to get your hands dirty and they have the same delicious sweet taste!
Girl’s Day, or Hinamatsuri, can also be called Doll’s Day because it is a tradition for Japanese people to display a set of Hina dolls that are dressed in traditional Japanese clothing and sit on a tiers of shelves covered in red carpet. Along with the dolls, other ornaments such as food and flowers are displayed. Families in Japan will display these dolls to wish their girls healthy growth and happiness. I bought a set of these dolls in Japan for my daughter and brought them with us when we moved to Australia.
Usually, Hishi-Mochi, a type of rice cake (mochi) made into a diamond shape with three different coloured tiers of pink, green, and white, are displayed on the stands with the dolls. However, instead of making hishi-mochi, I decided to make three colour dango, or “Sanshoku Dango”, because it uses the same colours and I just prefer this because it’s easier to eat and looks cuter to me. The three colours are used because they are said to represent peach flowers (pink), snow (white), and new growth (green). My daughter is obsessed with this kind of dango so my parents will always bring her a packet of it when they go to pick her up from the airport because apparently she can’t wait another 2 hours until they get home to eat it.
The dango all have the same sweet taste but the green one has a slightly different flavour to the others because it is made with a type of leaf called Yomogi. Unfortunately, I can’t find this anywhere in Australia, so I made the green one with matcha instead, which tasted really yummy. So if you don’t have Yomogi then you can use matcha too. I hope you enjoy this recipe!
- 150g Glutinous rice flour
- 150 g Silken tofu
- 3 tbs white sugar
- 1tsp Matcha powder
- A few drop of Pink colouring
- Place the rice flour, silken tofu, and sugar in a large bowl and mix well until it forms a dough.
- Divide the dough into three equal parts.
- Add the matcha powder into one of the dough parts and knead until the dough turns green.
- Add a couple of small drops of pink food colouring into one of the other dough parts and knead into the dough until it turns a light pink.
- Roll each ball of dough (green, pink, and white) into smaller, even-sized balls.
- Boil some water in a pot or sauce pan and add the dango balls.
- Once the dango raises to the surface of the water, scoop them out and put them into a bowl of cold water.
- Place one green, one white, and one pink dango onto a skewer and repeat until all the dango are gone then serve!