Dango in Twin Cities?
My anime-loving niece is in town from Michigan and is all a twitter for some "dango" - potentially sweet Japanese dumplings. Anyone have any ideas on where to get these? I'll be the coolest Auntie ever if I can put some on a plate in front of her!
I think there might be some dango in the frozen section of United Noodle, although I am not sure how tasty they will be. They also carry glutinous rice flour (mochiko) if you would like to try a recipe off the internet.
I recommend the daifuku mochi available at United Noodle in the refrigerator section. I never seem to get out of there without one. Mochi is a pretty close relative of dango...traditional Japanese desserts tend to have the same ingredients (glutinous rice, sweet azuki beans).
If you're looking for already-prepared dumplings, I don't think that United Noodles has much in the way of fresh/prepared Japanese food. (The little "food court" does Taiwanese dishes, I think.) But they'd have the necessary ingredients, and who knows - there might be a frozen version available.
United Noodles is a fun field trip, anyway - your niece might like other Japanese treats like Ramune (Japanese "lemonade" pop sealed with a marble) and snacks with adorable logos. Most of the Japanese food is on the shelves to your right as you enter the store.
And you could try calling some of the Japanese restaurants to see if they ever have dango on a specials menu. I'd try Tanpopo, Midori's, Sakura, and Obento-ya, even though they don't have dango on their regular menus. They might know if anyone in town makes them.
Tanpopo Noodle Shop
308 Prince St, Saint Paul, MN 55101
Sakura Restaurant & Sushi Bar
350 Saint Peter St Ste 195, Saint Paul, MN 55102
Midori's Floating World Cafe
2629 E Lake St, Minneapolis, MN 55406
Obento-Ya Japanese Bistro
1510 Como Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414