JAPAN EYE 2020

What is the wagashi ?”外国人にも分かる和菓子”

wagashi

Dears, Good evening !
I’m Japanese sommerier “RAKITHICHI”
Today’s theme is as below

What is wagashi?
Wagashi 和菓子 is a traditional type of Japanese confectionery of which there are three kinds.There is

  1. higashi 乾菓子,a dry type of sweet,
  2. namagashi 生菓子,a soft and moist one,and
  3. also the type that is described as being somewhere between dry and wet.

Typically,wagashi are served with Japanese tea.Because Japanese tea is bitter,the sweetness of the wagashi complements the drink.For tea ceremonies,sophisticated,well-decorated wagashi are definitely part of occasion.And out of appreciation for the nature and simply to please the eye,wagashi are often prepared and decorated to represent some aspect of the particular season.

For example, in summer it is common to serve wagashi decorated with a type of jelly that is transparent,which is meant to give a cool feeling.
WATER “SHINGEN” CAKE

shingen-cake

SHIRATAMA AZUKI with Fruits

白玉

In autumn,many wagashi are designed to look like colorful leaves.

和菓子


As for higashi, the dry type,rakugan落雁 are quite well known.There are often boxed and also quite colorful, making for fantastic gifts.

rakugan
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For regular meals,the common type of wagashi is called manju饅頭 (it’s same pronunciation to the Mario  Mandžukić )which is made

Mario Mandžukić 2018.jpg

SAKURA MANJU

sakuramochi
饅頭

MOMIJI(COLORFUL LEAF) MANJU 

manju

using a red bean paste called AN餡 and wrappped in a doughy layer.As for dry wagashi,senbei煎餅 are most popular. These are round,thin and crispy,and made using rice,flour and other ingredient to add flavor.

煎餅
Besides wagashi,many find it interesting taking a look at Japan’s snacks.Famous for as snack industry and huge variety of flavors,Japan has something for everyone when it comes to snacking.There are countless dried snacks and not only sweet items but also salty ones as well as those that are hot and crispy.

Sometimes these snacks may taste as bit fishy

for people from other country,but for Japanese,these type of snacks can be as dangerous as potato chips for some once you start eating them,its really hard to stop until they’re all gone.