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hanami dango thumbnail

Hanami Dango with Tofu (花見団子)

  • Author: Yuto Omura
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 dango 1x


How to make beautiful tri-color sweet rice dumplings "Hanami Dango". (Makes 6 dango)


  • 6 bamboo skewers
  • 100g "Shiratamako" glutinous rice flour (or mochiko)
  • 20g "Joshinko" rice flour
  • 45g Granulated sugar
  • 120g Silken tofu
  • 1/4 tsp Matcha powder
  • 1 drop red or pink food coloring
  • 1 drop strawberry/cherry blossom extract (optional)
  • Water for boiling
  • Bowl of ice water


  1. Take 6 medium sized bamboo skewers and leave them to soak in a glass of water. (This makes the dango easier to slide on later on.)
    soaking bamboo skewers
  2. Add 100g shiratamako, 20g joshinko and 45g granulated sugar to a bowl and mix dry until well incorporated.
    Mixing dry ingredients to make hanami dango
  3. Add 120g silken tofu to the bowl gradually one third at a time.
    adding tofu to hanami dango mixture
  4. Mix it using a rubber spatula until the texture resembles scrambled eggs.
    mixing the tofu into hanami dango mixture until the texture resembles scrambled eggs
  5. Knead into a smooth dough, the texture should feel a bit like play dough.
    knead the hanami dango dough until the texture is smooth and feels like play dough
  6. Start heating water in a pot and bring it to the boil.
    boiling water
  7. Divide the dough into 3 parts.
    cutting the hanami dango dough into thirds
  8. Divide one of the thirds into 6 pieces (approx 15g each) and roll them into balls as it is to make the white parts of the dango.
    measuring each ball for hanami dango
  9. Take another third, add 1/4 tsp matcha powder and knead until the colour is distributed through the dough. Roll into 6 15g balls.
    rolling the hanami dango coloured with matcha powder
  10. Wash your hands and add 1 drop of pink or red food colouring to the final third. Knead until the dough is evenly pink all the way through and then roll into 6 15g balls.
    kneading the dough until it's evenly pink all the way through
  11. Once the water is boiling you can add the dango balls. Boil each colour separately to prevent colours from running. Start by carefully adding the white balls to the water and gently mix them to stop them sticking to the bottom of the pot. 
    gently mixing the dango to stop them sticking to the bottom of the pot
  12. Boil them until the balls float to the top (approximately 5-7 minutes) and then set a timer for 2 minutes. 
    Green dango floating in the pot
  13. While the dango is boiling, prepare a bowl of ice cold water.
  14. Once 2 minutes are up, transfer the dango to the ice cold water to stop the cooking process. 
    add the cooked dango to a bowl of ice water
  15. Repeat the step 10 and 12 for the pink dango next, and green last. (You can use the same ice water for all the dango. Top up the water if needed.)
    adding the cooked dango to a bowl of ice cold water
  16. Once the dango balls are cooled down, push them onto the skewers. Start with green, then white and lastly pink. So your dango should have green at the bottom and pink at the top. 
    pushing the skewer through the dango, green on the bottom, white middle and pink top
  17. Eat on the day for best texture.
    holding up one hanami dango skewer
  18. Enjoy!


If you don't want to use pink/red food colouring for your dango, you can use crushed dry strawberries or 1-2 drops beetroot juice.

Note: If you use mochiko instead of shiratamako, the texture is slightly firmer/less chewy.

Best eaten the same day.

If you want to eat it the next day, wrap it in baking parchment and store in an air tight container at room temperature. (Don't store in the fridge as they will go hard.)

Can be frozen for up to one month. Thaw for 30 mins to 1 hour at room temperature and enjoy!

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Sweets
  • Method: Boiling
  • Cuisine: Japanese

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