Chop the kabocha into 2 cm cubes, put them in a heat-resistant dish, wrap in plastic, then microwave for about 5 minutes (at 500 to 600 W). Peel off the skin and mash while hot.
Divide the anko into 8 portions, and roll into balls.
While the kabocha is hot, add the butter and sugar and mix well.
Sift in cake flour and baking powder, then mix until evenly incorporated.
Cut two 25 cm long sheets of parchment paper, then cut each into fourths to prepare 8 square pieces of paper.
Divide the kabocha mixture from Step 4 into 8 portions, roll into balls, flatten into 10-cm circles, then place in the center of the parchment paper. Place a ball of anko on top.
Press in the sides of the parchment paper, then loosely bring the 4 corners together.
Arrange the dumplings on a frying pan, cover with a lid, then steam on low heat for about 17 to 18 minutes.
They're done! Test to see whether they are evenly puffy and firm to the touch (they should be moist, but not sticky).
Remove the parchment paper, and transfer to a serving dish. Sprinkle with poppy seeds (or white sesame seeds).
Story Behind this Recipe
This is the season for kabocha squash. I'm working on recipes for easy-to-make desserts with kabocha.
For the anko filling, either tsubu-san or koshi-an is fine. But when using canned boiled adzuki, since it's a bit watery, simmer first to reduce. Adjust the steaming time to suit your frying pan or stove.