Archive for the ‘wagashi (和菓子)’ Category

Wagashi (和菓子) is the traditional confection of Japan that developed with the tea ceremony. Wagashi come in a myriad of types and most are made with sweetened beans, mochi and/or fruit. The theme is always natural beauty and often have a reference to a classical poem or painting. Kyoto’s famous kyogashi (京菓子) are considered the pinnacle of sophistication and refinement in Japan.

Wagashi: Kyoto Toraya’s Year of the Ox Namagashi

Wagashi: Kyoto Toraya’s Year of the Ox Namagashi
Wagashi: Kyoto Toraya’s Year of the Ox Namagashi 京都とらや のどかな朝 Wagashi: Kyoto Toraya's Year of the Ox Namagashi 京都とらや のどかな朝
There is a blend of sophistication, beauty, simplicity and cuteness in namagashi, especially Kyoto namagashi, that is just unlike anything else in the foodie universe. In food and non-food related design, the traditional Japanese sense is something from another, bygone world, but still seems so essential even in…

Shogatsu: Mochibana Japanese New Year Decoration

Shogatsu: Mochibana Japanese New Year Decoration
Mochibana Japanese New Year Shogatsu Decoration 餅花 Mochibana Japanese New Year Shogatsu Decoration 餅花
Mochibana is a Japanese New Year’s decoration that uses white and pink colored mochi wrapped around willow branches to simulate blossoms. Shogatsu signals the coming of spring in Japan, and spring is plum, peach and cherry blossoms. Why do people use mochi rather than real flowers?…

Kyoto Style Dorayaki: Gion Shimogawara Azuki Mikasa

Kyoto Style Dorayaki: Gion Shimogawara Azuki Mikasa
Kyoto Style Dorayaki: Gion Shimogawara Azuki Mikasa 祇園 下河原 阿月 三笠 Kyoto Style Dorayaki: Gion Shimogawara Azuki Mikasa 祇園 下河原 阿月 三笠
In Gion, on the way to Kiyomizu Temple is a tiny shinise shop that specializes in dorayaki, called mikasa in Kyoto dialect. Dorayaki is sweet bean paste sandwiched between two waffle-like pancakes. Doraemon fans will want to take note of this because Doraemon loves dorayaki, it is…

Wagashi: Angel Hair Keiran Somen (Fios de Ovos)

Wagashi: Angel Hair Keiran Somen (Fios de Ovos)
This entry is part 3 of 7 in the series Do Not Miss
Wagashi: Kyoto Tsuruya Keiran Somen 京都鶴屋 鶏卵素麺 鶴寿庵 Wagashi: Kyoto Tsuruya Keiran Somen 京都鶴屋 鶏卵素麺 鶴寿庵 fios de ovos
For this unusual wagashi just two ingredients; sugar and egg yolk, and some ancient Portuguese technique are needed to make Keiran Somen, literally ‘chicken egg angel hair noodles’.…

Kyoto Autumn Leaves and Ginkgo Leaf Shaped Wagashi

Kyoto Autumn Leaves and Ginkgo Leaf Shaped Wagashi
Kyoto Autumn Leaves and Ginkgo Leaf Shaped Namagashi  いちょう 生菓子 Kyoto Autumn Leaves and Ginkgo Leaf Shaped Namagashi いちょう生菓子
I collected some fallen ginkgo leaves on the grounds of a shrine and a church in northern Kyoto for this article, while shooting these photos I was particularly struck at how similar the namagashi really resembled the actual leaves, both in form and in color.…
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