Tag: Mochi Sweets

I’ve waited for 1 month to buy this legendary Matcha Mochi sweets! Ginza Kazuya

I’ve waited for 1 month to buy this legendary Matcha Mochi sweets! Ginza Kazuya

In Ginza, Tokyo Japan, there is a very popular and famous Matcha sweets that are very difficult to get. It is “Kazuya-no-Ren” from Ginza Kazuya in Tokyo.٩(๑•̀ω•́๑)۶

Let me share more about that sweet with you!

 

You need to make reservation at least one month before.

First, you need a reservation to buy this delicious dessert. You can reserve by calling shop or visiting it, however, since the shop is super busy they rarely can pick up calls. I called them several times, but they didn’t pick up, so I ended up visiting the shop to make a reservation. [Please see below for the detailed shop information]

 

ginza kazuya shop

 

At the shop they tell you dates and time slots where you can pick up your order, but those dates are usually one month ahead!! If you are really lucky you can pick up an earlier date when somebody cancelled and they have an opening. You need to tell them how many boxes you want, your name and your phone number.

 

kazuya menu

 

Their popular sweets are called “Kazuya-no-Ren” but besides that they also sell other sweets such as Yokan, candy and Matcha tea powder that you don’t need reservation for. But I highly recommend you try “Kazuya-no-Ren”.

 

Let’s go pick it up!

After one month, I visited the shop again to pick up my order. “Kazuya-no-Ren” comes with 6 pieces for 2,150 yen with some ice packs because needs to be kept refrigerated.

 

kazuya box

 

“Kazuya-no-Ren” is made from some simple ingredients without any preservatives, so they last only one day. I referred it as “Matcha Mochi” but technically it is not Mochi because it is not made from Mochi rice.

 

kazuya box inside

 

It is a high-quality Matcha sweets that cannot be categorized under usual Wagashi groups.

Because each piece of “Kazuya-no-Ren” is wrapped with a bamboo leaf, first I was surprised at how much fresh aroma they have.

 

kazuya no ren wrapped

 

Once you open the bamboo leaf wrapping, you will see the vivid green Matcha color. By this color, you can tell how rich taste and flavor of Matcha it has.

 

kazuya no ren

 

I was expecting it would taste like mousse by its looking, but it is way more complicated! It is chewy like Mochi, soft like pudding and smooth like mousse. Of course it has strong taste and flavor of Matcha, but I could feel rich milk taste as well, just like I am drinking a really good Matcha latte.

 

delicious kazuya no ren matcha mochi

delicious kazuya no ren matcha mochi 2

 

It was something I never tasted before and cannot be categorized in anything. It is absolutely worth the wait. Super delicious, thumbs up for it!!

 

[Shop info] Ginza Kazuya (銀座かずや)

Access: 3 min walk from Hibiya station. The shop is located inside a building, and it is really small.
1. Take the A4 exit of Hibiya station and turn right under railway viaduct.
2. Go into a building on your right side that has a small sign saying “菓子”.

 

ginza kazuya access

 

Hours: 11:30am – 3:00pm (close once sold out), closed on Sunday and public holidays.

Note:
1. Cash only
2. No English menu

Website: ginzakazuya.com(Japanese only)

Address: 1-6-8 Matsui Building 1F, Yurakucho, Chiyoda, Tokyo

 
 

You have to wait for more than one month, so it is difficult to try when traveling but if you get a chance, please give it a try! And let me know how you like it.

Related post: my recommended 3 cafes in tokyo where you can enjoy matcha and high-grade japanese sweets

Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)

Very popular Mochi café “Gekko” in Tokyo! Try silky chewy freshly-made Mochi

Very popular Mochi café “Gekko” in Tokyo! Try silky chewy freshly-made Mochi

I want to introduce you to this popular Mochi café, “Gekko”, that is specialized in Mochi and Japanese teas. Please add this café on your list of must-visit-cafes in Tokyo!(๑˃̵ᴗ˂̵)و

Here is everything about the café, access, menu and how I like it!

 

Cozy small café with a good access from Tokyo station

The café, “Gekko” (月光), is located near Uguizudani station, which is only 5 stations away from Tokyo station and takes 10 min ride. From Uguisudani station, you need to walk 4-5 minutes after taking the South exit. (see below for maps and address)

It is a very small café that has cozy and warm atmosphere. The café only sits 12 people in total. Because I went there 20 min before they open on weekday, I could find a seat but people kept coming in and started making a line.

 

gekko outside inside

 

They hand-make Mochi every morning

What makes Gekko so special is that they hand-make Mochi every morning. It is unusual because most Mochi makers make Mochi using machines these days. Making Mochi by hand required a lot of effort and time because you need to pound Mochi rice hundreds of times to make it Mochi. By making Mochi with your bare hands, Mochi becomes very silky and smooth. You can tell the difference for sure!

They use special Mochi rice from popular rice farm in Aomori prefecture. With this rice, you can taste rich and sweet flavor from their Mochi.

 

Try “Donburi-Mochi” and “Gekko Zenzai”

In this café, I recommend you to try their signature Mochi dish, “Donburi-Mochi” (950 yen). It is a warm bowl dish that has 5 small round Mochi coming with soy sauce, spices and a cup of roasted green tea.

 

mochi cafe gekko donburi mochi

 

The soy sauce is made with fish and sea kelp broth, and tastes a little sweet. You can add spices of your choice from wasabi, crispy seaweed and radish.

Once I held the Mochi with chopsticks to eat, I was surprised how soft it was! Also, their Mochi is amazingly silky and smooth, and of course, very delicious! The Mochi was very nice and chewy , but I felt as it was melting in my mouth. I ate it with some spices on it. Spices are also fresh and add nice kicks to soft Mochi.

 

mochi cafe gekko delicious mochi

 

My biggest regret was that I got my stomach full with “Donburi-Mochi”and could not challenge another dish. But everyone was ordering “Gekko Zenzai” (950 yen) which is a dessert bowl that comes with small Mochi pieces, Matcha ice cream and red bean paste in cold Matcha tea. I wish I had invited my friends so we could share all of these delicious menus!

 

 

[Cafe Info] Gekko (月光)

Access: 5 min walk from Uguisudani station of JR Yamanote line.
1. Take the South exit of Uguisudani station.
2. Make left and cross the bridge.
3. At the first signal, cross the road and make left.
4. Make right at the corner of Chinese restaurant and Japanese sea food restaurant.

 

gekko access from uguisudani station

 

Hours: Mon-Fri 12pm-7:30pm (last order at 7pm), Sat-Sun 12pm-7pm (last order at 6:30pm), closed on Wednesday

Note:
1. May close early when Mochi is sold out for the day
2. Cash only
3. Has an English menu

Website: minowa-gekko.com

Address: 3-7-18 Negishi, Taito, Tokyo

 
 

If you visit there, please let me know how you like Gekko! Hope you enjoy staying Tokyo.

Related post: my recommended 3 cafes in tokyo where you can enjoy matcha and high-grade japanese sweets

Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)

My selection of 3 best Mochi cafes in Tokyo! Enjoy freshly made super delicious Mochi

My selection of 3 best Mochi cafes in Tokyo! Enjoy freshly made super delicious Mochi

There are many Mochi sweets and dishes in Japan, but, there are not many places that offer freshly made Mochi. So, let me show you some of my favorite Mochi cafes! (º﹃º)

Related post: what is mochi? a beginner’s guide to mochi

 

1. Gekko(月光)

Gekko is a very famous and popular café that is specialized in Mochi and Japanese teas. They make Mochi everyday by hand without using any machine even though most of makers use machines to pound rice and make Mochi these days! By doing every process with hand Mochi becomes very silky and smooth.

 

 

Here, I recommend you try “Donburi Mochi” (950 yen) which is a hot bowl dish coming with 5 round soft Mochi. It comes with a soy sauce based special sauce designed by the owner. It is amazingly soft yet chewy, and has a rich flavor of rice. So, so delicious! It comes with a cup of roasted Japanese green tea.

 

 

Not only Mochi, they also offer a variety of Japanese teas and Japanese tea sweets, including Matcha. If you are a fan of Mochi and Matcha, this place is where you should go!

See how I liked it!: very popular mochi café “gekko” in tokyo! try silky chewy freshly-made mochi

 

 

[Info]Gekko

Access: 4 min walk from Uguisudani sta (JR Yamanote line)
Menu: Donduri-Mochi: 950 yen
Note: Cash only

 

2. Kinozen(紀の善)

Kinozen is a long-established Japanese café that is famous for their Japanese traditional sweets such as Matcha mousse and Anmitsu, Japanese red bean parfait.

 

 

However, you can also find fresh Mochi dishes here as well! I recommend you try “Zo-ni”, a Japanese traditional soup dish with Mochi. The broth of its soup is based on fish and sea weed and tastes very clean yet rich. The Mochi is grilled and has a nice crispy surface, while keeping its very soft and chewy texture.

 

 

 

You can also buy some of their sweets and Senbei (Japanese rice cracker) to go.

[Info]Kinozen

Access: 3 min walk from Iidabashi sta (Yurakucho line, Namboku line)
Menu: Matcha mousse: 874 yen
Note: Cash only

 

3. Oiwake Dango Honpo(追分だんご本舗)

Oiwake Dango Honpo is a long-established Dango shop/café located in Shinjuku, one of the most popular tourist place. They are specialized in Dango, skewered round Mochi balls. Here, you can enjoy freshly made Dango.

Related post: what is dango? the 5 most popular types of dango

 

 

There are many types of Dango on their menu, includeing Mitarashi Dango (sweet soy sauce Dango), sea weed wrapped Dango, spicy chili pepper Dango and many more. Please try as many flavors as you can!

 

 

Their shaved ice is also famous and popular. Please stop by there when you are tired from walking around Shinjuku.

 

 

[Info]Oiwake Dango Honpo

Address: 3-1-22 Shinjuku | NSO Bldg. 1F, Shinjuku, Tokyo (Mon-Fri: 11am-7pm, Sat-Sun: 11am-8pm)
Access: 1 min walk from Shinjuku-san-chome sta (Marunouchi line, Fukutoshin line)
Menu: 2 Dango sticks (Mitarashi and Anko): 567 yen

 
 

Even if you don’t live in Japan or not visiting Japan, you can make Mochi at home. It is delicious and easy. Please try!

Related post: how to make mochi at home : 3 easy ways

Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)

4 delicious Japanese Mochi sweets you must try!

4 delicious Japanese Mochi sweets you must try!

There are many types of Wagashi, Japanese traditional sweets and especially Mochi sweets are becoming more and more popular all over the world. But, if you are a beginner to Wagashi, what should you try first? Let me show you my recommendations. (☆Д☆)

 

1: Daifuku (大福)

Daifuku (aka Anko Mochi) is very popular Japanese sweets. It is a round Mochi ball that has red bean paste inside. You can enjoy chewy texture and rice flavor from Mochi and sweetness from red bean paste.

Related post: what is daifuku? perfect combination of mochi and red bean jam (anko)

There are many other types of Daifuku such as one has beans on outside Mochi layer. But, if you are new to Daifuku, I recommend you try Ichigo Daifuku (aka Strawberry Mochi) that has a whole strawberry inside together.

 

 

2: Dango (団子)

Dango is skewered Mochi balls that come with various sauces. Mochi balls are usually grilled and very chewy. Sometimes you can find Dango as a street snack and can have a freshly made Dango.

Related post: what is dango? the 5 most popular types of dango

Dango sauce can be anything from sweet to salty. But the most popular sauce is Mitarashi, which is thick sweet soy sauce similar to teriyaki sauce. It is sweet yet savory. I am sure you will love it!

 

 

3: Gyuhi (求肥)

Gyuhi is a very simple Mochi sweets, which is sweetened Mochi. To make Gyuhi, you just need to mix some sugar into plain Mochi and knead. By adding sugar, Mochi becomes even softer because sugar helps Mochi contain moisture. It is so soft, almost like melting in your mouth.

 

 

Gyuhi is delicious as it is but it is also used to make Nerikiri, which is a high-grade beautiful Japanese traditional sweet.

Related post: nerikiri, an edible art! beautiful high-grade traditional japanese confectionery

 

 

4: Mochi ice cream

Mochi ice cream is not a traditional Japanese sweet experience, but it has been getting more and more popular, so why not try it? Same as Daifuku, it is a round Mochi, but it has ice cream inside instead of red bean paste.

There is one very famous and popular Mochi ice cream in Japan, Yukimi Daifuku. The outside Mochi layer is so soft and there is vanilla ice cream inside. You can find this ice cream at convenience stores in Japan. If you have a chance, please try it!

 

 
 

Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)

The easiest and delicious CHOCOLATE MOCHI recipe in 5min using microwave!

The easiest and delicious CHOCOLATE MOCHI recipe in 5min using microwave!

You like Mochi and chocolate, yet haven’t made chocolate Mochi by yourself? Let me show you the easiest chocolate Mochi recipe that you can make in 5min with only microwave!Σ(・ω・ノ)ノ

The Mochi is soft and chewy, with rich melted chocolate filling inside…. It is absolutely delicious and you will be surprised how easy it is!

Preparation: 30min
Ready in: 5min

Related post: what is mochi? a beginner’s guide to mochi

Related post: how to make mochi at home : 3 easy ways

 

Ingredients

This recipe makes 6 small chocolate Mochi.

– 2 blocks (approx. 50g) of dried Mochi, aka Kirimochi (see below about what Kirimochi is)
– 1 chocolate bar of your choice (I use 50g)
– 1 tbsp milk
– 1 tbsp sugar (I use cane sugar)
– good amount of starch powder. Potato starch is the best but corn starch works too.
– (optional) cacao powder

chocolate mochi ingredients

 

Preparation

First, in a microwave-safe bowl, soak Mochi blocks in water for 30min. This helps Mochi to soften faster.
*I recommend you to cut the Mochi block in an inch cubes.

choco mochi preparation

 

Directions

1. Cut the chocolate bar into half. One is for the filling and the other is for Mochi. Chocolate for the filling, divide in 6 smaller pieces. Anothe half chocolate for the Mochi, chop finely as in the picture.

chocolate mochi direction1: cut chocolate

 

2. Drain the water and add the chocolate for Mochi (chopped), sugar and milk.

chocolate mochi direction2

 

3. Lightly cover the bowl with a plastic wrap, and put it in a microwave for 1min in 500W, then mix well smashing and mixing Mochi with other ingredients. At this step all ingredients are not well combined yet.

chocolate mochi direction3

 

4. Put it back to a microwave for another 30sec in 500W, then mix well again until all ingredients combined In one texture. Repeat it if the Mochi is still hard.

chocolate mochi direction4

 

5. Place the chocolate Mochi dough on some starch powder and cover the Mochi surface with starch powder. Then divide the Mochi into 6 equal pieces.
*starch powder is not for the taste. It keeps Mochi from sticking to your hand and tray.

chocolate mochi direction5

 

6. Take each Mochi piece, spread it, put the chocolate for filling in the center, then wrap it. When wrapping try to make it round while the Mochi is still warm.

chocolate mochi direction6

 

7. (optional) Sprinkle some cacao powder on the Mochi and done!

chocolate mochi

 

Enjoy chocolate Mochi!

Because you wrap the chocolate filling while the Mochi is still warm, the chocolate inside will be melted. The Mochi will be more squishy and harder eventually so if you like soft Mochi, I recommend you to put it in a microwave for 5-10sec before eating.

Of course it is good if you use Anko (red bean paste) filling instead of chocolate filling. This makes Daifuku (aka Anko Mochi)!

Related post: what is daifuku? perfect combination of mochi and red bean jam (anko)

 

What is Kirimochi?

I used Kirimochi in this recipe instead of making Mochi from Mochi flour (aka Mochiko) to make it easier. Kirimochi is a ready-to-be-cooked Mochi block that you can eat just by grilling or warming. I am sure you can buy Kirimochi at your local Asian grocery stores. Also you can purchase it from Amazon. (an affiliate link below)

 
 

Please let me know if you want to know other easy recipes!

Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)

What is Dango? The 5 most popular types of Dango

What is Dango? The 5 most popular types of Dango

Have you ever tried Dango? Dango is one of the most popular Japanese sweets (Wagashi). If you are a fan of Mochi, you really should try Dango.(*^ワ^*)

Related post: top 10 popular japanese sweets (wagashi) that japanese like the most!

I am sure you have seen Dango if you have visited Japan as it is sold at anywhere, such as convenience stores and tourist areas. Here, I will explain you interesting facts about Dango!

 

What is Dango?

Generally, Dango is the term for the Japanese traditional sweet that is made of several small Mochi balls on skewers. Mochi balls may be topped with sauces or grilled before eating and it said that there are more than 20 different variations of Dango.

Let me introduce you the 5 most popular types of Dango!

 

Mitarashi Dango

Mitarashi Dango is the most popular type of Dango, it is also my favorite Dango!

Mitarashi Dango is grilled and topped with a thick, sweet soy sauce that tastes similar to Teriyaki sauce. The savory Dango combined with the salty sweet sauce is very delicious!
 

A post shared by @tmr0705 on

 

Hanami Dango

When the Sakura (cherry blossom) season comes, these cute Hanami Dango is lined up at Japanese confection shops. Many people enjoy Hanami Dango while viewing the cherry blossom. The pink, white, and green colors of the skewered Mochi balls are their distinctive trait.

Some say that the three colors of Hanami Dango represent spring: pink being cherry blossoms, white being spring sake, and green being Japanese Mugwort. The Mochi balls are mixed with sugar and slightly sweet.
Please try it if you come visit Japan in the season of Sakura!
 

 

Kinako Dango

Kinako Dango has Kinako powder, which is a grilled soy bean powder, as a topping. Freshly grilled aroma from soy bean is an excellent match with Mochi’s soft and gooey texture.
 

A post shared by seiko kawamura (@yw_seiko15) on

 

Matcha Dango

Matcha Dango has Matcha powder mixed in Mochi balls. The vivid green color and fresh aroma from Matcha gives Mochi a good accent. It is extra delicious if it has some red bean paste (Anko) on top of Dango as a topping!
Of course, you want to try this Dango with a cup of Matcha, right?
 

A post shared by ai (@ai042014) on

 

Soy Sauce Dango

Soy sauce Dango is grilled Dango topped with soy sauce. The savory scent of the grilled soy sauce is irresistible.
One creative and delicious way to enjoy Soy Sauce Dango is if you wrap them in seaweed or coat them with chili flakes. We recommend to try Dango when it fresh! You can find freshly made Dango at shopping districts and in sightseeing areas.
 

A post shared by @jyun_614_si20 on

 
These days there are so many creative types and tastes of Dango that you can enjoy!
Related post: watermelon dango?! wagashi brings you a sense of season
 
Please try many types of Dango and find your favorite one(s)!╭(๑•̀ㅂ•́)و
Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)

What is Daifuku? Perfect combination of Mochi and red bean jam (Anko)

What is Daifuku? Perfect combination of Mochi and red bean jam (Anko)

Daifuku is one of the most popular Japanese traditional sweets. It is my absolute favorite too!

Related post: top 10 popular japanese sweets (wagashi) that japanese like the most!

 

What is Daifuku?

The Japanese sweets called ‘Daifuku’ are small balls of Mochi filled with sweet bean paste. The combination of fluffy, gooey Mochi and sweet red bean jam (Anko) is just too perfect.

The bean filling is either red or white and can be rough with whole beans in it or a smooth paste. Each Daifuku maker has done years of R&D to create the perfect combination of sweetness, taste and texture, so Daifuku lovers should try as many versions as they can!

Related post:  what is japanese red bean paste, anko? types and how to eat at home

Daifuku is a very simple sweets, and there are many types of Daifuku made with multiple ingredients. Let me introduce you 4 popular Daifuku!ヽ(・∀・)ノ

 

Mame (bean) Daifuku

Mame Daifuku is the most popular traditional Daifuku among Japanese people. Mame (bean) Daifuku is a type that has boiled peas mixed in with the Mochi. The crunchy beans make a perfect accent to the chewy Mochi texture.

The filling typically consists of red bean jam, either “chunky” style sweet bean jam called Tsubu-An, or a smooth jam made only from the inside parts of the bean, called Koshi-An.

There are many makers specialized in Mame Daifuku in Japan. Depending on a maker, the thickness of Mochi, the sweetness of Anko and the amount of beans are different.

 

 

Ichigo Daifuku (aka Strawberry Mochi)

Ichigo (strawberry) Daifuku has an entire strawberry inside. The sourness and fresh flavor from strawberry, the sweetness from sweet bean paste and the chewy Mochi make for the perfect flavor combination!

Typical Ichigo Daifuku has red bean jam inside but there are ones that have white bean jam instead. You can find many Ichigo Daifuku sold during strawberry season, which is winter ~ spring in Japan.

 

A post shared by 土屋郁恵 (@ikue_0705) on

 

Yomogi (mugwort) Daifuku

Yomogi (Japanese mugwort) Daifuku has mugwort leaves mixed into the Mochi, giving it a green color. People also call it ‘Kusa Mochi’ (grass Mochi). Its refreshing herb-like taste gives a good accent to Mochi.

 

A post shared by amaimono (@amaimono117) on

 

Cream Daifuku

Cream Daifuku is a more modern twist on an old classic. Instead of just bean paste, they fill it with cream (and sometimes bean paste as well).

There are many more types of Cream Daifuku, like one has coffee-flavor in Mochi, or fruity one that has fruits such as grape and orange inside together with cream.

 

 

 

Daifuku is a very simple sweet as it consists of Mochi and red bean jam, yet there are many types of Daifuku.

Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)

Watermelon Dango?! Wagashi brings you a sense of season

Watermelon Dango?! Wagashi brings you a sense of season

Wagashi (Japanese traditional sweets) are often designed to express characteristics and subtleties of a season. Wagashi’s shape, color and taste change depending on season.

 

How Wagashi express each season

In spring when Sakura (season of beautiful cherry blossoms), you can enjoy Wagashi called Sakura-Mochi that as is pink as Sakura and has actually Sakura flavor.

 

In summer when it is very hot and you want to eat and drink something refreshing, you can find jelly-like transparent Wagashi called Kingyoku-Kan that brings you sense of coolness just by looking at it.

 

In autumn when nuts are in season, you can enjoy Kuri Manju (chestnut bun) that is designed to look like chestnut and has a chestnut with delicious Ank0 filling inside.

A post shared by Aya.O (@olive_ayaya) on

 

In winter, you see many Wagashi shaped as Tsubaki flower (camellia), a beautiful flower that blooms blooms in winter.

A post shared by 瀬戸 正志 (@marsatracks) on

 

Many Wagashi often made to describe seasons with their looks and taste. However, some popular Wagashi are enjoyed throughout the year regardless of season. For example, popular Dorayaki (Anko sandwiched between two pancakes).

 

Watermelon Dango?!

Nowadays, beside those traditional seasonal Wagashi, some makers experiment with different ingredients and looks to further surprise you. In this post, I would like to introduce a very creative type Dango. Dango is small round Mochi balls that are skewered on bamboo sticks. Typical Dango comes with sweet soy sauce (this one is called Mitarashi-Dango) or Anko on top.

 

This Dango went viral on social media this summer. It is made by a Wagashi maker that has a long history. I introduce you,, watermelon Dango!

Related post: what is dango? the 5 most popular types of dango

 

As you can see, it looks just like watermelon! But I wonder… how it tastes like?!

 

It was made with great attention to details! Inside is red just like watermelon, and even has black seeds. It expresses watermelon very well. The red part is Mochi (chewy rice cake) and seeds are black sesame. The green and black coating is chocolate. Each piece is made by hand. What surprised me that it not only looks like a watermelon, but it tastes like as watermelon as well. This is because the red Mochi inside is made with watermelon juice! And it actually tastes really good! Mochi and chocolate go well together and watermelon flavor adds freshness to it.

 

By the way, this is good example of modern Wagashi because traditional traditional Wagashi does not include chocolate.

This watermelon Dango is made by Wagashi maker called “Yagumo Dango”. They make many different Dango types including classic Mitarashi Dango. This maker is quite popular and has long history. However, this new watermelon Dango booster its popularity in Japan significantly. They ship only within Japan as frozen delivery. To defrost, you need put them in a fridge for 2.5 hours before eating.

 

Please give it a try!

If you visit Japan try this Dango with family and friends! I am sure you will enjoy it. And if you try it, please let us know.

 

[Info]Yagumo Dango : 6 watermelon Dango, 1,620 JPY + shipping fee. Only available in Japan. (´・ω・`)

 

Matane! (In Japanese, means “see you soon!”)