How’s your summer been so far? (Sorry, it’s winter for the people who live on the Southern Hemisphere). Here in London we had a record breaking hot day in July which was followed by some rainy cold days and now some sunny but still quite chilly days as summer. I wonder whether the Indian summer will come this year.
I made some Japanese sweets in a summer flower design. This is one of them, Morning Glory. I think it’s the most summery flowers. It is the first plant that I have sown the seeds and looked after myself when I was a child.
I made this sweet because I received a private order. It is one of the best sweets for summertime.
I received a pravate order. I selected these two sweets of Sunflower and Morning Glory.
Have a wonderful weekend.
It’s the ‘Tanabata’ night tonight! (Regarding Tanabata, please read my previous post😊)
Let’s hope we can see the Milky Way!!
This Sunday, the 7th of July, is a special day called ‘Tanabata’ in Japan. It’s not a national holiday but it is the day that everybody hopes to have good weather and looks up at the sky in the evening. It came from the ancient story that a young loving couple was forced to live separately each side of a river by the God. It was because they loved being together too much and neglected their work. However, the God saw that they were too saddened about the fact that they could not see each other anymore, he gave them permission that they could cross the river to meet once a year if the weather was good and the sky was clear. That one day they are allowed to see is the 7th of July. It’s an ancient story which was supposed to be happening in the sky. The lovers were actually stars and the river was the Milky way. I mentioned this story in more detail in the past so if you are interested to know more, please visit my old post of Tanabata with Cosmos sweet.
So the Tanabata day is coming tomorrow. It is known as a Star festival and a wishing day in Japan and there are some places having a festival too. Last year I made the Bamboo Japanese sweet for this occasion with ‘Sasa’ Bamboo leaf shaped sweet and the red and yellow wishing paper strips as decoration. I was wondering what sort of sweet I should make for this year’s Tanabata day. I wanted to make something quite different.
Galaxy Mizu Yokan
This one is my Tanabata sweet this year.
Oh, No! How time flies! We are already in July. Time passes so fast and it’s so difficult for me to catch up! I made these Rose sweets a little while ago but could not post it here until now.
Anyway, there are a lot of ways to express a Rose flower in a Japanese sweet. I have made several sweets in the past including the Mochi Rose last year. The one here is using the same technique for making the Mochi Rose but I used ‘Nerikiri’ sweet instead of ‘Mochi’ this time.
Clematis is one of my favourite flowers. Last year I made a Clematis sweet with a ‘Mochi’ type sweet so this year I wanted to create it in a different way. I decided to make it with a ‘Nerikiri’ sweet. The Clematis flowers are normally from white to pink or purple colour which is the colour I like the most. However, I did not want to use any food colouring this time so I used Ube Purple sweet potato/yam to colour and flavour the sweet. I like purple blue Clematis flower so that helped too.
By using the same sweet material in two colours (and flavour) of white and purple I created these two types.
Today, the 16th of June, is the Wagashi Day (please read the article about this day that I posted in 2017). It started as the day that the emperor made sixteen of ‘Wagashi’ Japanese sweets as the offering to the God when the plague took place and destroyed people’s lives in the Heian period. Although the day was set as the Wagashi Day since then, the custom of the offering almost died down. However, just recently people started bringing this Memorial day back.
By following the custom of offering, I re-introduce sixteen sweets of my Wagashi I had created in the previous year here.
16 My Wagashi in 2018
Here are the sixteen sweets from all Wagashi Japanese sweets I have created in the year 2018.
With these sixteen sweets offering/photos I just hope our world is going to reshift towards a better direction. Happy Wagashi Day!
You might have seen many photos of Mimosa flowers last week and wondered why these flowers now? It was because the 8th of March was the Mimosa Day. Actually it was the International Women’s Day and the flower is the symbol of the day. I was not planning to make any sweets that day but when I heard it was the “Women’s” Day I thought I had to do something to celebrate particularly for this day. I made some sweets with a Mimosa design but I could not take photos quickly enough for posting to my Blog here in time on the Wemen’s Day. However, as I believe “being late is better than never”, so here it is.
As soon as I had Mimosa’s image in my mind I got some idea. I tried making these three types.
The image in my mind was lots of fluffy tiny yellow pompoms on the tips of every branches that reach out with the blue sky as the background.
When I come back from Japan my suitcase is always full, actually too full and overloaded which means sometimes I have to remove some stuff from it. It’s normally filled with Sencha green tea, sweets and some other Japanese food that are either difficult to find or too expensive in London. However, when I returned this time in February there were something different I brought back in my luggage.
They were my brand new tools for making Japanese sweets. Now I am back in London and started creating Japanese sweets. I could not wait to see if I could use them properly. I have seen that many professional sweets makers were producing beautiful sweets by using the same tools and could not wait to try out how I can use this.
This sweet is the very first trial I made as a practise, so it is far from the perfection. I realised that controlling the grip of the tool is the key to producing a great result and I need a lot of practice. One of the petals came off by cutting too deep, but I am quite pleased to see the outcome as this was my first attempt. I don’t know how it looks to you but I hope you can see this as the shape of Chrysanthemum or some kind of flower. I am going to carry on practising and hopefully I can show you the great result of a Chrysanthemum by this autumn.
I found a little swirl in this lovely Japanese Kimono shop.
The colour and pattern are very Japanese.
Have a lovely weekend! 😊