Saturday, December 24, 2011

Easy Anko (Red Bean Paste)

Anko (Red Bean Paste) is the staple of Asian sweets. It's used in bread, pastry fillings, sweet soups, pancakes, and ice cream. Made from azuki beans, a type of red sweet beans; Anko comes in either a chunky style (tsubushi-an) or smooth (koshi-an). Traditionally when preparing Anko, one would have to buy dried azuki beans and soak them for 24 hours. We've discovered an interesting short cut. We took a can of Red Beans and boiled them in lemon water this drastically reduce cooking time making our Anko paste easily within reach ^^


Ingredients:

1-15 oz can of Organic Red Beans ( we recommend Westbrae Natural. Organic Red Beans. Don't buy red kidney beans!)

1/3 cup of sugar

1/2 of lemon water ( this trick will get rid of the salty can taste)

1/4 of water


Chunky (tsubushi-an) Anko

1) Open the can of red bean and rise thoroughly.

2) Put in in a small sauce pot on a medium flame, and 1/2 of cup of lemon water (water + some lemon juice or chopped lemons)

3) Cook for 15 minutes. Then drain bean from water.

4) Put bean in pot, add 1/4 cup of water and 1/2 cup of sugar, cook on high medium heat.

5) The mixture will start to bubble, let it boil for about 15 minutes. Make sure to stir so the bottom doesn't burn.

6) Switch to a low medium flame, the sugar and the beans should start to thicken looking like chunky cranberry sauce.

7) Turn off heat and let the paste cool.


Smooth (koshi-an) Anko

1) Open the can of red bean and rise thoroughly.

2) Put in in a small sauce pot on a medium flame, and 1/2 of cup of lemon water (water + some lemon juice or chopped lemons)

3) Cook for 15 minutes. Then drain bean from water.

4) Place beans in either an blender or food processor. Puree beans.

5) Place purred beans in pot. Add 1/3 cup of sugar, and stir of low-medium heat

6) The mixture will start to become a dark red. Stir for about 5- 10 mins until sugar dissolves.

7) When sugar is dissolves, turn off heat and let the paste cool.

Refrigerate paste- It last for 2-4 days.


To Learn How to prepare Traditional Anko.

Check out this video from, What the Food!


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