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Posts Tagged ‘red bean’

I’ve started to count the seasons here by not the weather, but the appearance and disappearance of Japanese sweets, wagashi from the local grocery store.kashiiwaa
I have one weak spot for wagashi devoted wholly to kashiwa mochi 柏餅,which is rice cakes formed into a pancake like shape, and filled with a sweet bean paste, then wrapped in a oak or kashiwa leaf. The sweet is associated with Children’s Day 子供の日 in May. I specifically love the ones filled with a mixture of miso an, or sweet white bean paste mixed with a small amount of salty Saikyo miso paste.

From the middle of April, I start to keep an eye on the wagashi corner of the grocery store, and do a little happy dance when I spot them for the first time in the season. Because these sweets definitely  have a season!  Wait more than a few days after the 5th of May, and you’ll have to wait another year before they come back.  While I like red bean mochi, and generally enjoy the taste of sweet bean paste, sometimes the tooth aching sweetness can be a bit too much even for me.
kashiiwaa2
Miso an filled kashiwa mochi is at once sweet and salty, the miso paste lends a depth of flavor missing from regular red bean paste, making the filling taste almost creamy. I guess adding the miso to the filling is the same concept as adding flaky sea salt to a chocolate cookie, or salted caramels, the salty taste accenting the taste of the white bean paste and preventing the filling from being overly sweet. It’s difficult even in Japan to find wagashi shops that still make miso an kashiwa mochi, but if by chance you do find a place selling them, please give them a try!

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Three yummy summer kakigori かき氷 shaved ice specials at Kihachi Ice Cream. In addition to the required shaved ice, these chilly desserts also come with a serving of Kihachi’s famous vanilla bean soft serve.

Yellow:Mango pieces, a citrus syrup, tipped with a grapefruit gelee.
This was my favorite of the 3, the sweet fresh mango goes really well with the tart grapefruit.

Green: The traditonal ujikinntoki 宇治金時 or sweetened red beans with a matcha syrup, topped with kanten 寒天 jelly pieces.

Red: Red raspberries with a scoop of annin purin アンニン プリン almond pudding, topped with a sweet raspberry syrup and condensed milk.

Kihachi Soft Cream@ Lumine building, Shinjuku station, Tokyo, Japan

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