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confection; cake; sweets
Kanji 1047

Thank you for visiting this Character Home Page. Below you'll find a synopsis of the essay. If you wish to read the full text, the PDF of the essay is available for purchase to the right.

Synopsis

Japan produces desserts from the world over, but its traditional confections offer the most surprises. Find out how a Japanese "sweet" may not be sweet at all and how even a fried vegetable could qualify! Also learn about the connection between 菓 and the tea ceremony, a recurring confection fair in Japan, gift cakes and gift horses, and what gods in Japan like to eat and drink.

Revision history:

May 8, 2015:
• p. 6: Changed the first paragraph of the photo caption to reflect that the dessert is a type of 羊羹 (ようかん: jellied dessert) made from sweet potatoes (芋).
• p. 13 sidebar: Deleted a mention of an "upcoming" event that happened two years ago!

Oct. 31, 2013: p. 15: I added a sidebar.

June 22, 2013: p. 11 photo: I added a comment about Yakushima cedars.

Dec. 21, 2012: Originally published.

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