Thursday, October 20, 2005

SHF: Home-made Men's Pocky

I pondered and pondered as to what I should make for this SHF: The Dark Side. I have been a fan of Kelli's Lovescool for so long, I wanted to make something that would show my respect for her and her inspirational blog. She was also one of my lovely judges during the last DMBLGIT competition, so I wanted to participate with a really nice dish as a show of appreciation for her time...

The problem was that I am not a very big fan of chocolate. I appreciate a dose of good chocolate here and there, but in all honesty, I don't crave it and I don't lust after it like I drool over some of the equally sinful savory treats and alcoholic drinks. I'd rather drink the same calories than eat decadent desserts - so I have a fairly limited repoire of chocolates treats to share... I brainstormed for all kinds of chocolate treats I would want to eat - which didn't produce a very long list. Since I always try to add a little touch of Japan (or at least Asia) when I participate in these events, I decided to go with something uniquely Japanese that had chocolate as a main player...

pockey
Home-made POCKY!

More specifically, these are called Men's Pocky in Japan, since they have a dark chocolate coating. For some odd reason, dark chocolate (or anything with subdued sweetness) in Japan is considered either manly or adult - hence, the dark chocolate versions of Pocky are called Men's Pocky...

Pocky is a national favorite in Japan. Ask any Japanese person and they will know what Pocky is. The familiar red box evokes childhood memories in almost anyone who spent any time growing up in Japan. The ubiquitous treats are found in convenience stores around the country, at kiosks at public transportation hubs, brought to field trips, and even served at bars in place of popcorn and peanuts. There is a wide range of Pocky-derivatives, such as those with strawberry chocolate (my favorite), green tea chocolate, crushed nuts with white chocolate to all other variations produced through Japanese creativity. The makers of Pocky, Glico, often bring out 'seasonal Pocky' too, which have boxes and flavors that are unique to the changing seasons in Japan - like the Sakura (Cherry Blossom) Pocky.

Making my homemade Pocky was so easy, I'm amazed I'd never done it before. My Pocky ended up about five times the width of regular Pocky, but I bet I could get them thinner next time. There was sesame in my biscuit, since I just used frozen dough from a previous SHF dish (yes, it was 4 months old... but it was frozen!).

Although my Pocky wasn't quite the same as the boxed Pocky, it definitely had the Pocky spirit. I don't know if I were to serve this to Pocky aficionados, they would recognize it as their favorite treat... I'd definitely do it again as an easy snack for potlucks and dinner parties, since they are very photogenic, cute little chocolate sticks!

Recipe:
Sesame tart pastry was sliced into thin strips, rolled into tubes, and baked until golden (in my oven, 400F for 10 min, but my oven is so messed-up, I have no idea what the real temperature is). Once the strips were cool, I poured microwave-melted dark chocolate on them and let them cool on saran wrap. Once the chocolate solidified, Pocky easily came off the saran wrap.

9 comments:

Yoko said...

Ha ha ha ha...Home made pocky! I have never seen like that home made sweet. I like that a lot!

The Papa Bear said...

I thought the addition of the sesame seeds was a nice touch; they added the occasional "pops" and nice pockets of sesame scents.

chronicler said...

Pocky?!? I had no idea what you had made until I saw the picture. :-) We have these as a treat every year during the hilidays. My family will be amazed that you made them yourself! Great entry for someone who is not a fan of the dark side!

McAuliflower said...

cute entry! Before reading I was having fun puzzling out the "man" part of it all (you'll have to go check out my entry to see where my brain has been).

very original!

Alice said...

Yoko-san,

I never knew they would be so easy! Next time we have an Enkai, I'm bringing these!

Papa,

And good for your hair!

Chronicler,

Thanks for visiting! I'm always over at your site checking out the latest food-related news, so it's an honor to have you visit!

I've always had Pocky growing up and never thought to make them myself until now, so this SHF was a great opportunity to give it a try. I'm definitely going to this again!

McAuliflower,

OH MY! Your entry is hilarious!! Hmmm. I suppose I could have made them even more "Men's" Pocky, since they are...you know, kind of the right shape/structure!

cin said...

I have been intrigued the name 'Mens Pocky' ever since we came across it so thanks for enlightening me on this! I wish we could get some of the other flavours that I keep hearing aobut tho'.

OnceAgayAlwaysAgay said...

can u teach me how to make durian topping for pocky? If u r willing, mail me at noobsniper_ak47@yahoo.com.sg

gourmandelise said...

Ohh, I like or I love Pocky! (Sorry, I speak french). Did you visit my blog at: http://www.gourmandelise.com. Bye Bye!

Anonymous said...

I love pocky! and I love your blog!found it while I was just surfing around. Japan is by the way a great country, I liked kyoto and harajuku especially. I will return to japan someday, that's for sure.

kind regards/
Sofia
from Sweden

sawdustanddiamonds@hotmail.com