We had so much fun at my Japanese art + cooking camp! Each day we made a different recipe. We had a lot of fun making a special type of Japanese cake called mushi-pan: steamed cakes prepared in your rice cooker or on your stove top. Mushi-pan are soft, fluffy and moist, and can be prepared in just 15 minutes from start to finish.
We made two recipes: apricot mushi-pan and frosted Nutella mushi-pan.
Apricot Steamed Cupcakes (mushi-pan)
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 2 eggs
- 4 Tbsp. milk
- 8 Tbsp. sugar
- 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 heaping Tbsp. of apricot preserves
- Rice cooker with steamer basket OR
- Large frying pan with lid
- Heat-proof Pyrex or Corning-Ware glass ramekins (I used 6 oz. Pyrex Clear Custard Cups)
- paper cupcake liners
- Fill rice cooker with water to depth of 2-3 inches. Turn on.
- Fill a large frying pan with water to 2/3 full and bring it to a boil (and turn off the heat if you are not ready yet)
- Put a cupcake liner in each glass ramekin.
- In a medium bowl, sift or whisk together the flour and baking powder combining well.
- In a small bowl, combine egg, milk, sugar, and vegetable oil and whisk together.
- Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and mix with a fork until smooth.
- Add in the apricot preserves and stir to combine. You should still have chunks of preserved apricot visible even after stirring.
- Spoon the mixture into the cupcake liners. Fill each liner approx. 1/3 to 1/2 full. Don’t overfill as these cakes rise!
- Place the ramekins directly in the rice cooker steamer basket or in the skillet with the boiling water. Cover and cook for 8 minutes.
- Uncover and test a cake with a bamboo skewer. The cakes are done if the skewer comes out clean. If the cakes are not done, recover and steam for two more minutes. Don’t over cook!
CAUTION: the steam is very hot and can burn you. Parental supervision is recommended.
- When cool, remove the cakes from the ramekins. They should pop out of the cups easily. If not, you can run a butter knife around the edges to loosen.
Frosted Nutella Steamed Cupcakes (mushi-pan)
I used the recipe from Magpies Recipe blog. . Click here for the recipe
We increased the sugar to 4 Tbsp./single batch, then frosted the cooled cupcakes with more Nutella.
The campers loved both varieties of mushi-pan cupcakes. You should try them!
Want more help? Check out this cooking lesson from the Japan Society.
Do you like cooking with kids?