For a Chinese kid growing up in Canada, I was pretty in touch with my roots. I grew up in a mix of cultural influences, which I didn’t always appreciate at the time but do now. I used to get really annoyed when my parents would use their vetoing powers to kick me off the TV to watch their Hong Kong Dramas. For those of you who don’t have Chinese parents, understand this: there is no reasoning with Chinese parents! You can try but they’ll probably just brush it off and say something like “because I’m the adult”. For the record, “because I’m the kid” doesn’t work. Tried it and failed. But because of their crazy ways (I’m blunt but I still love my parents ahaha), I can now speak Cantonese learnt from TV without a Gwai Lo accent (though some of my friends would disagree). Oh and 11 years of Chinese School probably had a weigh in it too. Fortunately, unlike most of my other friends, I actually really enjoyed taking Chinese lessons. (nerd alert)
Not everything in my upbringing made sense or had a practical outcome though. For example, my mom used to make me and my sibs drink these really bitter soups of strange herbs to decrease “hot air” (which I recently learned is inflammation) or improve general health or get smarter or grow taller. It’s been 22 years and I’m only 5’5″, I don’t think it’s working mom!
Best part of my inter-culture upbringing? EATING ASIAN DESSERTS. Yan-yan cookies (the Asian version of Dunkaroos), BinBin rice crackers, Hello Panda cookies, red bean everything, mango everything, lychee everything, pineapple buns, Haw Flakes, and POCKY.
Pocky is the shizz you guys. It is the taste of my childhood. Those cute boxes of chocolate covered cookie sticks will always have my heart. In child currency, a box of Pocky is worth like 7 oreos, ie. priceless. In adult currency, they’re about $4 a box. Which is pretty ridonc considering that you only get about 9 scrawny sticks. That’s why I started to make my own. Bless the creative genius who came up with the recipe.
One recipe of this homemade Pocky makes about 16 7-inch cookie sticks which taste just as good as the boxed version, if not BETTER. Bold statement, I know, but I’m willing to put money on it. It takes a little bit of time to roll out each stick, but you’ll get the hang of it once you find your own rolling style. #theyseemerollin #theyhatin
Work with cold dough because it’s easier to roll out and transfer to the baking sheet. Save yourself the stress by popping the dough into the fridge for 20 minutes before rollin’
Who says Pocky has to be stick shaped? Twist the dough into whatever shape you want! Go crazy
- Cookie Sticks
- 1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- Chocolate Coating & Garnishes
- white chocolate, melted and tempered
- milk chocolate, melted and tempered
- toasted coconut flakes
- chopped toasted hazelnuts
- chopped toasted pecans
- Mix the sweetened condensed milk with water and set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt on low speed until well mixed.
- Add the butter and mix until the mixture resembles cornmeal, about 5 minutes.
- Mix in the condensed milk mixture all at once and continue mixing until it is fully incorporated and the dough forms a ball around the paddle.
- Transfer to a large sheet of plastic wrap, pat into a 1-inch-thick disk, and wrap tightly in the plastic.
- Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 300 F.
- Cut the disk into 8 wedges. Work with one wedge at a time, put the rest back into the fridge.
- Each wedge makes 2 sticks. Break the wedge in half and roll each half into a long stick shape
- Transfer the sticks to a parchment- or Silpat-lined baking sheet, setting the sticks 1/2 inch apart.
- Refrigerate the baking sheets, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
- Bake until golden brown and crisp for 14 minutes. Rotate the pans at 7 minutes.
- Cool completely before coating and garnishing