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A case for the scrumptious return of the Mochi Roll Cake

When a classic Swiss roll meets the Japanese flour-dusted mochi. We loved it when it found fame back in 2020, and we love it again now. Return: the Mochi Roll Cake!

In all honesty, the Mochi Roll Cake never really left us. But it’s hasn’t been anything new worth raving over either. In fact, it has remained a recurring staple on many bakeries’ agenda, often outshone by its more extravagant, photogenic counterparts — exquisitely decorated roll cakes filled with pretty cross-sectioned fruits or a perfectly spherical dessert paste, like taro, sesame or chestnut, all nestled in a fluffy blanket of fresh cream. The mochi, then, a contrasting pale pasty white in its entire roughly edged, irregular form, is left delegated to the ends of WhatsApp order forms. A forgotten afterthought, should the next-and-newest fail to impress.

Image courtesy of @37.cake

But this is a piece on the redemption of the mochi roll cake, and so warrants an unapologetic, shameless brag: The mochi roll cake emerges as top winner in the world of cream-and-cake logs. Why? Well, the perfectly ratio-ed combination of chiffon cake and whipped cream, for one — not too much cake nor too little cream. And, of course, the unmistakable chew of a perfectly sticky mochi placed strategically in the centre for a welcomed break from the pillow-soft construction, for another. Then, the array of ingenious fruit and garnishes that follow. Tea-infused toppings. Spiked cream filling. Extra tasty bits and bobs wedged within the sweet, creamy layers.

To reignite the mochi-roll-cake spark in the city, here are some local bakeries still holding out a torch for these delicious, and arguably, overlooked sweets. A tasty forkful for any dull afternoon, surely.


Go for: A special Tieguanyin tea-infused mochi roll cake and something of a more usual suspect, indulgent, umami-rich matcha mochi roll cake.They’re a photogenic pair; a deep verdant green and rich, earthy brown, made from a blend of two types of Japanese flour for the chiffon’s light and airy contrast against the French, so-very-soft cream centre. Both available not off the MoshiMochiHk’s order form, interestingly, but at partnering café Zap Jok in Sham Shui Po exclusively. The baker routinely rolls out with limited roll cake runs at various cafés around the city, so it’s worth checking back for updates of new pop-ups.

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Mochiffon Cake

Go for: A rollchi — Bailey’s spiked with sea-salt caramel!– or the baker’s famed and favourited Mochiffon. The former, the classic, mochi-filled, rolled-up log we’ve been rhapsodising of. But the latter, a palm-sized wonder — a squeeze of cream and a thick slab of soft mochi, sandwiched between two fluffy chiffon loaves — is how Mochiffon got its name, a blur between mochi and chiffon, and everything that comprises the notable bakery. There’s a plethora of very tempting serves, but the particular ones we have our hearts set on: Coffee chiffon with sea-salted caramel and earl grey chiffon with infused cream, walnuts and a scatter of romantic rose petals.

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Shiro Bakery

Go for: Hojicha Black Sugar Warabi Mochi Roll Cake. Skewing a little off path than some others on this list, Shiro Bakery, a self-proclaimed baker dedicated to teas, are known their baked treats infused the with rich, earthy profile of traditional brews they’re modelled after. In this Hojicha roll, the light-roast notes are tempered by a smooth creamy filling centred by a black sugar warabi mochi — a softer, more jelly-like texture than the traditional version; a very seamless blend of textures.

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Happy Roller HK

Go for: Black Sesame Peanut Mochi Roll Cake. Although for a non mochi-filled iteration, the charcoal-infused chiffon with crushed sea salt and oreo cream roll is looking very delicious too. But back to the black sesame peanut mochi roll, it’s made with a rich double-blend of house-roasted sesame cream and rich peanut creamy — crunchy, not smooth! — wrapping around a chewy chunk of sweet mochi.

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Go for: Tieguanyin Peanut Mochi Roll Cake. The traditional Chinese tea Tieguanyin is infused into the fluffy chiffon that wraps over a matching Tieguanyin tea-infused cream centre, peppered with moments of tiny mochi surprises. The magic, however, is the on the top of this log, a beautiful, satisfying swirl of chunky peanut cream and dotted with fresh milk mochi that are blanketed in even more crushed peanuts.

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Header image courtesy of ZapJok/ MoshiMochiHK

Lorria Sahmet
After two years of covering luxury retail, Lorria is thrilled to be writing in fashion, food and lifestyle here at Lifestyle Asia. When not roaming around garden centres hauling back new plants for her indoor jungle, find her hunting down the best fries in the city. She's happiest by the ocean with a fishbowl glass of ice-cold Aperol spritz.