Tomorrow, the 7th of July, is a day called ‘Tanabata’ Day in Japan. It is not a national holiday but we have events and festivals on that day all over Japan. It is based on an old story that a young couple (stars) who fell in love with each other far too much and neglected their work made the God got very angry. The God decided to make them live separately on each side of the river (the Milky Way), however, seeing that how sad they became, he felt sorry for them and gave them permission to cross over the Milky Way once a year on the night of the 7th of July if the weather is good and the sky is clear. I posted this story in more detail two years ago so if you are interested to know please visit the post.
This is the story that happens in the sky above us, so what can we do down on the earth? We wish it’s going to be a clear sky on the day so that the couple will see each other. As the gesture that we are wishing for their happy meeting we put a bamboo outside our houses and write our wish on a piece of colourful rectangular paper called ‘Tanzaku’ and hang it on the bamboo. Around this time of last year I was working with a British retailer in London. He placed a bamboo outside his shop and asked his customers and passer-by to write their wish and hang the Tanzaku on his bamboo. Amazingly to me it was a huge hit. All people loved the idea and enjoyed the sight of it so much.
By imagining the sight of Tanabata Bamboo I created this sweet for July.
The outer layer is in a shape of Bamboo (Sasa) leaf that is wrapping up the soft Azuki Sweet Bean centre. The two pieces in red and yellow on the top of Bamboo leaf are supposed to be Tanzaku papers moving side by side by being blown by the wind.
The outer layer is flavoured and coloured with ‘Matcha’ Green Tea powder which goes very well with Azuki sweet bean paste.
It’s Vegan and Gluten free.
This Tanabata Bamboo sweet is served at Matcha bar of Wasoukan (Notting Hill, London) until the end of July.
It has been great weather in England so I think we are going to have a very clear sky and the couple, Orihime and Hikoboshi, will be able to see each other and spend happy hours.
Have a Happy Tanabata🎋 Day, everyone!