Very short post about the stuff we had while we were in Osaka and Himeji.
Even though it felt freezing when we were in Osaka, we (or rather, I) went and bought yukimi daifuku! It's basically ice cream with mochi skin covering it. They've formulated the mochi such that it's not frozen even when you take it out of the freezer. Instead it's super soft and nicely chewy. I love it! These ones here are mini but they are usually sold in a box of two. I was first introduced to it when I was in HK as a child and it's one of those childhood foods that you love forever <3
Vanilla is the best flavour! But they come in lots of other flavours too.. in HK they usually have mango and ube in the supermarkets. In Japan, I would expect they would have it in strawberry, green tea or red bean flavours but I didn't get them.
Nothing much from Osaka as we were only there for a day and we cooked our dinner in the hostel.
On the day we went to Himeji castle there was a sakura festival. One of the stalls inside the grounds was holding tea ceremonies or sado. We had to pay to get in but since we'd never been to sado, we wanted to try it out.
Frothy tea that has been whisked. It wasn't very hot and it tasted really bitter! Definitely not something you would want to drink every day. The sweet that comes with it is supposed to help reduce the taste of the bitterness.
I saw that they served slightly different looking ones to different batches of people which was unfortunate as I wanted to try two different types.
The sweet itself wasn't amazing - some sort of spongy dense cake that wasn't very sweet. It does look very pretty though~~ The little wooden stick served as a pseudo spoon for you to eat the cake.
The festival had lots of food stalls selling local produce and handmade food products. We saw a stall selling bags of apples and another selling wine etc.
The stand below is a catering stand - it sells sake to the people who have come to the festival and are sitting around picnic-ing.
This stall is selling deep fried fish cakes. You can have it skewered or cut up in pieces.
After we walked around the castle, we walked out and found another area where they had stalls of food and products.
We decided to get these noodles because it says that it's a meibutsu which is Japanese for famous products associated with particular regions; in this case, Himeji Station's ekisoba.
It was noodles in hot dashi broth topped with green onion, shichimi and fried tempura batter. We enjoyed it because it was a cold day and the broth was nice and hot.
We also got some Karimanjuu which is a combination of karinto and manjuu. Karinto is a deep fried sweet snack usually flavoured with brown sugar while manjuu is a traditional Japanese sweet.
So they were essentially manjuu shaped with a crispy karinto-like outer shell and the inside was red bean paste. Tada~ Karimanjuu! The box we bought was cold but I think if they had been warm, they would have been even nicer.
And that's it for Osaka/Himeji!
Till the next meal or snack...