Anko or an is a sweet red bean paste widely used in Japanese desserts. Its recipe is simple but requires a long cooking time. Thanks to this recipe you can manage the amount of sugar that suits you best.
Ingredients and utensils to make anko
For the ingredients, you need water, white sugar, salt and red azuki beans. These red azuki beans are easily found in organic stores.
Otherwise you can use simple red beans.
Recipe for anko, sweet azuki bean paste
- 200 g red azuki beans
- 170 g sugar
- 700 ml water
- 1 pinch salt
- In a saucepan, immerse your azuki beans in a large volume of water. Boil and simmer for 5 minutes then discard the cooking water.
- Repeat this process a second time to remove the bitterness from the azuki beans.
- Add your 700 ml of water, covered, and simmer for about 40 to 50 minutes over medium-low heat. Make sure the azuki beans are cooked through. You should be able to crush them easily with your fingers or a fork.
- Drain the cooking water and add your sugar over very low heat while stirring for about 15 minutes, you should obtain a syrupy texture.
- Add the salt.
- You can keep the anko paste as it is or mix it. Here we mix it to obtain a smooth texture that will allow you to easily fill pastries or use it as a spread!
Tips and tricks
Tips and tricks
- You can use honey instead of white sugar.
- Do not hesitate to make portions of anko that you can freeze easily and use in dorayaki or a ganache for matcha tea macaroons for example.
- You don’t have to mix them. You can keep their texture which will be appreciated on Japanese sweet pancakes, white yoghurts, kakigori crushed ice cream…
Frequently asked questions about Anko
🧉 What is anko?Anko is sweet paste of red azuki beans from China which is widely used in Japanese cuisine. One of the most famous Japanese desserts made with anko is undoubtedly Dorayaki!
👨🍳 How to make anko?You will need to soak and then cook azuki beans for a long time. Then you will have to sweeten them to your liking and then blend them according to your taste to get a more or less smooth texture. Find all the details in our recipe!
🛒 Where can we buy anko ?If you don’t want to make it yourself, you can get it in any Asian grocery store. It will be sold in small cans, either with a smooth texture, or mostly semi-smooth with bean pieces.