2024-05-10 Kashiwa-mochi

Japanese Food

Kashiwa-mochi is a steamed rice cake with sweet bean paste filling, wrapped in an oak leaf. It is customary to eat it on Children's Day, May 5.

There are usually three types of bean paste: chunky red bean paste, smooth red bean paste, and sweet paste made from white beans and miso.

Old leaves on the oak tree do not fall off until new shoots appear. So it is believed that the tree is protected by the god of trees.

Also, when new shoots grow on the oak tree, people see them as the tree's children, while the old leaves are seen as the parents. This represents the idea of family continuity, and the hope for the prosperity of the offspring.

This is why Kashiwa Mochi is traditionally eaten on Children's Day, symbolizing the wish for the prosperity and well-being of children.

Kashiwa leaves are not only auspicious, but also have antibacterial and moisturizing properties. However, oak leaves are coarse and not very tasty, so make sure you peel them off before eating!