A wonderful snack treat that growing up, we were served in celebration of the New Year. There are very many different variations of manju, Chinese, Korean and Japanese. Some are served warm, right from the oven, but more traditionally at room temperature.
The traditional centers are stuffed with whole, mashed or pureed sweet azuki bean, but there are several places around the islands that have become well known for their “Home-Style” manju, filled with pineapple, apple and mango.
5 c. all-purpose flour 2 TB sugar 1 tsp. salt 2 c. canola oil 6-8 TB ice water 1(18 oz.) can tsubushian (sweet red beans) 1/3 c. evaporated milk
Preheat oven to 425 degrees; lightly grease baking sheets. In a mixing bowl, sift flour, sugar and salt together. Add oil and water; blending well. Add water as needed. Pinch 1 1/2-2-inch balls of dough; flatten. Fill with heaping teaspoon of tsubushian; seal edges. Place seam side down onto prepared pan. Brush tops of manju with milk. Bake 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.
Variation: Fill with apple/peach pie filling. Makes 4 dozen.