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Things to Eat and Drink in Japan

Japanese Food

Kashiwa Mochi

Last update December 31, 2020

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Kashiwa Mochi  かしわもち, 柏餅

Oak-Leaf Rice Cake or an oak-leaf wrapped rice powder dumpling

japanese-food-kashiwa-mochi On May 5th, carp streamers swinging in the blue sky and children smiling and eating Kashiwa Mochi or Chimaki. This is a typical scene from the Children’s Day in Japan. As you can see in the photo, it’s a rice-powder dumpling (filled with An) wrapped in a Kashiwa (daimyo oak) tree leaf. Why the tree leaf? It’s not a leaf of any tree but specifically of this species, which is known for retaining its leaves until the new sprouts have grown. That means when babies are grown up parents are alive and kicking, and a deeper meaning behind this — your clan will thrive forever. In a society like nowadays where life expectancy continues to rise, not only parents but also grandparents are still alive and kicking when babies are grown up. So it’s a good thing that everyone from the young to the old in the house eats Kashiwa Mochi, celebrating the family that's living happily ever after! Unlike Sakura Mochi, the leaf wrap is not edible.


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