I once had delicious chestnut mochi cakes in Nakatsugawa City, Gifu Prefecture. I came up with a chestnut powder for this recipe by chance when making kuri kinton (a Japanese dessert of made from sweetened chestnut and puréed sweet potato).
This is the type of chestnut I use. I recommend setting aside a few chestnuts for this recipe when making a separate dish that uses chestnuts.
Prep the chestnuts using your method of choice. I used a pressure cooker.
Use a strainer to strain the shelled chestnuts (I use 120 g). The result is chestnut powder.
Soak the rice cakes in water before microwaving. To make an authentic version, using freshly pounded rice cakes would be ideal, but that's a bit hard to do at home...
Arrange rice cakes on a serving plate, and sprinkle chestnut powder. Top with refined sugar to taste, just like what's served at shops.
This is the chestnut rice cake that I ate at Ohtsuya's near Ena Station in Nakatsugawa City in Gifu! Just thinking about it makes my mouth water! This recipe does not produce the same result, but hopefully it's close enough.
Story Behind this Recipe
On October 17, 2010, I went with user "Pon-Pon-Do-chan" to Nakatsugawa in Gifu to eat chestnut mochi cakes and kuri-kinton. It was my first time to eat chestnut mochi cakes! I was shocked to find that the expiration is 2 hours! By chance, when making kuri-kinton, I created chestnut powder, and thought maybe I could make a homemade version, so I posted it here.
Use your choice of rice cake and microwave to soften it. In order to produce the texture of freshly pounded rice cakes, I microwaved them rather than grilling them. But be sure to eat while still soft. I stored my leftover chestnut powder in the freezer. That way, you can enjoy as many as you want to eat, even in small amounts.