“The Mochi Baconader” name/promotional concept/banner graphic and Bacon-wrapped Mochi photo by Pomai @ TheTastyIslandHawaii.com. Mochi photo sourced from Stella Rosa Wines. Bacon image sourced from Boredom Therapy. Bacon-wrapped Mochi sold by Nani Kore.
Yesterday evening the Great Hawaiian Food Truck Festival took place in Waikiki, where by far the most intriguing food creation I came across (among many) was a Bacon-Wrapped Mochi Stick being offered by a company called Nani Kore – Hawaii’s Gourmet Kimchi.
Dude, BACON FREAKIN’ WRAPPED MOCHI! When I asked the guy cooking them on a flattop next to the booth what that was — having not yet looked at their signs — and he told me it was Bacon-wrapped Mochi, I was like, “GTFO!, are you serious?!” He just laughed, saying he was getting that same reaction from the crowd the entire evening.
And I could hear a buzz going around, with folks standing near the booth telling their friends, “I so gotta’ try that Bacon-wrapped Mochi!”
Actually, that makes the company name Nani Kore an apt one, being “Nani kore?” loosely translates to “what is this?” in casually-spoken Japanese (formally it would be “Kore wa nan desu ka?”). Which is EXACTLY what everyone was wondering! Or maybe it should be more like “Nan da-yo!”, which in “street” Nihongo (particularly by men) means “WTF?!!!” lol
Anyways, long story short (but actually long, ’cause I’m Podagee, you know lol), before trying this, I went walking around the entire Food Truck Waikiki block party, which took up almost the entire length of Kalakaua’s main drag in “Waiks” taking pics and trying other food. Yet determined to try this, sure enough I returned, and $4 less in my wallet, here it is, as shown above. Nani Kore’s Bacon-Wrapped Mochi on a stick.
So how exactly is it put together? Well, pretty much as advertised, being a stick of what must be noted tastes like UNSWEETENED mochi, wrapped in what had the flavor and texture of a very good quality bacon. I’m guessing the Kirkland brand, being they were doing these in bulk. And I mean, these were FLYING OUT THE DOOR at their booth!
Again, it’s simply a long stick of mochi wrapped with the bacon, then fried on a flat-top until golden crispy, with the mochi (sticky rice cake) inside turning nice ‘n hot ‘n semi-soft ‘n gooey. Then for serving, the cooked Bacon-wrapped Mochi sticks are skewered with a disposable bamboo chopstick, then drizzled with a generous amount of a very sweet Teriyaki glaze over the entire length of it, giving the porky, smokey, salty bacon that fantastic complimentary sweet contrast, along with even more savory depth from the shoyu.
Size-wise (not including the stick), it’s about 1″ thick x 8″ long, which think Costco Food Court jumbo hot dog wiener. About there. Which actually was quite filling, where I could only finish half of it, taking the other half home for later (it fit handily in my pants pocket wrapped in the foil, without leakage from the Teri’ sauce).
And? OISHII! SUGOI! Dude, the combination of crispy bacon and chewy, sticky mochi TOTALLY works! To be honest, as much as I LOVE Japanese food (it’s listed on my ‘About’ page for this blog as my favorite cuisine), I’m not into mochi at all. Yet, we all know if you WRAP BACON AROUND just about ANYTHING, it’s ALL GOOD! lol!!! And it certainly applies to mochi!
What’s great about it is, the bacon doesn’t easily separate off the mochi as you bite into it, but it actually sticks to the sticky rice cake, as it should, like glue! So every bite you take has an equal amount of the savory, salty bacon and neutral-tasting glutenous sticky rice cake encased within it. While the extra sweet teriyaki glaze totally jacks this up to sugoi-riffic oishii’licious awesomeness’ness. <—Are those valid words? lol
Other glazes and drizzles I would try along with the proven sweet Teriyaki glaze is perhaps a brushing of real Maple Syrup, along with perhaps a drizzle of chocolate sauce, ala Chocolate-dipped bacon. Perhaps also try dipping the entire bacon-wrapped mochi stick in tempura batter and deep-frying it delicate-crispy, then serving it with a Tempura dipping sauce and/or a miso/chili/mayo-based “Dynamite” drizzle. Bam!!!
I’m actually not surprised after going home and Googling “Bacon-wrapped Mochi” that it’s been done already, where I understand street vendors are doing this in Japan. I mean, really, again, wrap bacon around just about ANYTHING, and chances are it’s gonna’ rock. And Nani Kore’s Bacon-wrapped Mochi sticks are rockin’ it! Or, err, as I’ve coined it, “The Mochi Baconader”! **<—-said in a deep, manly WWF intro’ type of sound byte**
Along with the whacky, yet totally oishii Bacon-wrapped Mochi sticks at the Food Truck Festival in Waikiki, Nani Kore was also selling their signature Pork Belly Kimchi topped on fried noodles, as well as a Sliders version.
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