Goheimochi Rice Cake

A local specialty of Nagano prefecture. Pounded rice coated with a walnut sauce and grilled. The aroma is heavenly.

Goheimochi Rice Cake
Photographed by MASAO KUDO

Recipe by
Noriko Hamasaki


Rice & Noodles



Calorie count is per serving
Does not include time for cooking rice

Ingredients (Makes 6)

  • 2 rice cups rice (360 ml)
  • [Sauce]

    • 40 g walnuts (chopped)
    • 1 tbsp white sesame
    • 3 1/2 tbsp sugar
    • 1 tbsp tamari soy sauce

      Alternatively, use regular soy sauce.

    • 1 tbsp sake
    • 2 tsp hatchomiso

      Alternatively, use regular miso.



Rinse the rice and cook with 270 ml of water. The resulting rice will be rather hard. Transfer the rice while hot to a suribachi grinding bowl and pound with a dampened pestle until there are hardly any grains left.


Pound the rice until it's sticky enough to cling to the pestle. When you lift it up, the suribachi should be lifted up with it.


Wet your hands and take 1/6 of the rice and form a ball. Flatten it and wrap it around a chopstick and shape into an oval cake.


Wrap aluminum foil around the two ends of the chopstick protruding from the rice cake. Grill for five minutes in an oven preheated to 200-250 °C until the surface is dry. Turn over and grill for another 5 minutes.


For the [sauce], thoroughly grind the walnuts and sesame in the suribachi, add the remaining ingredients and blend thoroughly.


Coat one side of the rice cake with the walnut sesame sauce and grill for 5-6 minutes in an oven preheated to 200-250 °C. When brown, turn over, coat with the sauce and grill for 5-6 minutes.


"Goheimochi" has been a delicacy of many regions' local cuisine like Nagano. It comes in the shape of a ball as dango and in the shape of straw sandals as waraji.

[Suribachi] A mortar. Japanese mortars have radial patterned dents on the inner side to make ingredients into particulate pieces or paste.