Gyuhi (a kind of rice cake made from glutinous rice or glutinous rice flour) (求肥)
Gyuhi is one of the materials of Japanese confectionery and a kind of rice cake made by kneading. 求肥 (gyuhi) is also written as 牛皮 or 牛肥.
Process of making
Kneading with water
The process comprising, in order, adding water to ground glutinous rice powder such as refined rice flour (ground glutinous rice) or mochi-ko (rice cake flour), kneading until soft, adding sugar or starch syrup, and kneading on heating.
Kneading and boiling
The process comprising, in order, kneading the above-mentioned materials, boiling it, adding sugar and so on, and kneading again.
Kneading and steaming
The process comprising, in order, steaming the above-mentioned kneaded materials instead of boiling, adding sugar and so on, and kneading again. This process results in better keeping quality than kneading with water.
It is better to knead bean jam until soft when you put it in, because the dough is soft.
Gyuhi came down from Tang (China) to Japan in the Heian period.
The reason why gyuhi is also written as 牛皮 (cow hide) or 牛肥 (cattle fertilizer) in kanji (Chinese characters) is considered as that, gyuhi of older times was darkish and looked like cow hide as it was made from unpolished glutinous rice. It is said that the characters of 求肥 (demand fertilizer) were applied later because of the strong tendency to detest meat eating in Japan.