The Seasons of Japan in Confectionery Form: "Itsuki Yokan"

2016.04.07

 

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"Smart sweets" from Gokokuya that blend tradition and nutrition

Plump, juicy, and beautifully formed, Gokokuya's "Itsuki Yokan" are a new take on tama yokan, a traditional Japanese sweet (wagashi) made of bean jelly and packaged in a sort of balloon to give it an appealing round shape.

Gokokuya itself is a new wagashi brand from Shunkado, best known for the "Unagi-pie," one of the most popular souvenirs to bring back from Shizuoka. Their name is a reference to the concept of the "five grains" (gokoku) which has underlain Japanese foodways and nutrition since ancient times. Gokokuya combines products made from the five grains and adds familiar fermented flavors from the Japanese table like miso paste and soy sauce to create new and delicious kinds of wagashi.

 

Next page: Sake, salt, vinegar, miso, and soy sauce: one flavor for each of Japan's "five seasons"