A mask-wearing mochi: Even traditional desserts in Japan are taking precautions

While dealing with the current pandemic, many have noted that some countries in Asia, such as Japan, already have a mask-wearing culture, and have therefore found it much easier to adjust to the expectation of constantly wearing one while outside.

But, in the spirit of making sure no one forgets the importance of this, one confectioners in Ginza, Tokyo, called ‘Oosumi Tamaya’, have come up with a summery and delicious reminder. With the slogan of ‘Ginza! Don’t lose to corona!’, this jumbo-size mochi sweet wearing its own edible surgical mask would stick in anyone’s mind.

Makers of traditional Japanese sweets pride themselves on using seasonal ingredients to suit the time of the year. Summer brings with it fruit-filled mochi called ‘daifuku’. For this daifuku, Oosumi Tamaya chose a juicy and refreshing filling, musk melon grown in Kumamoto prefecture. Recently farmers in Kumamoto have been hit by heavy rains, so the shop chose their melons partially as a way to help them through this rough patch.

This choice is not only seasonally apt, but a cheeky pun. Both the loan words ‘mask’ and ‘musk’ are expressed the same way in Japanese pronunciation as ‘masuku’. So the sweet’s name ‘Summer Jumbo Masuku Daifuku’ has two meanings.

Apart from this, and the obvious face mask reference, this sweet is incredibly well thought out. The ‘jumbo’ moniker not only refers to the size of the daifuku, but also the ‘jumbo lottery’, as the original store’s proximity to a big lottery win gave their strawberry daifuku a reputation as a good luck charm. This is another reason for the melon filling. According to Feng Shui, melon is a ‘money poison’. It encourages financial prosperity, while also purging your body of its accumulated bad energy.

But such a special treat can’t be bought so easily. It will only be sold for a limited time, until 14th August for 777 yen (lucky number seven of course), and only five will be sold per day. If you want to try your luck at getting one, they will only be sold at the Ginza branch of Oosumi Tamaya.
Article Source: Grapee.jp

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