New Year is the time to eat rice cake called mochi for Japanese. As I shared in my other posts so far, red and white are used for various items during new year.
Usually red mochi color is made by artificial coloring but mine is made by natural shiso leaf ! The same leaf is used for Umeboshi .. salted plum. Also usually white mochi is made by plain glutinous rice but mine was added yamaimo (a kind of yam potato)! So looks like normal but both are different and really difficult to find. That’s a gift from friend’s sister who lives in small village and I really appreciated this special gift for the new year.
FYI, long one with black soybean is sliced of mochi from long mochi bar. There are many version of mochi in Japan and we eat them in winter. Don’t know why we don’t eat in summer … but people don’t do it probably it’s really hot when we grill mochi at the burner… and also mochi itself becomes sooo hot. When you will have a chance to try the freshly grilled mochi in Japan, be careful cos inside is really hot! But if you leave it for a while in the room temperature, it becomes so hard again and difficult to eat.