My husband and I were watching TV the other day and my mind was blown by a single fact: bekomochi only exists in Hokkaido.
To be specific, we were watching Kenmin Show, which is a Japanese program that showcases the various aspects of different prefectures. In previous years, the focus was all about different food that unique to just that particular prefecture. The catch is that most of the people don’t realize that what they’ve assumed to be food eaten all over Japan is only available to the citizens of that prefecture. This explains the title show’s title Kenmin (県 prefecture and 民 people).
So I always thought that bekomochi, which is easily available in supermarkets was also available throughout the country. Imagine my surprise that it was only eaten here in Hokkaido.
That prompted me think of more gentei (限定) things unique to this prefecture:
As the name says, it’s a sweet mochi that is shaped into a leaf. It’s usually soft and ready to eat, unlike the hard, dry mochi that you have to heat up to soften that’s sold in huge packages. At our local supermarket there were two kinds available. The brown one is made of brown sugar while the green one is the Japanese herb yomogi or よもぎ. In English, it’s known as the Japanese version of the herb mugwort.
Hokkaido Version of Coca-Cola
Okay, it’s not really unique to Hokkaido, but the can is. The can claims that the taste is unique only to Hokkaido, but I swear it tastes exactly the same as you would get anywhere. Anyway, I included this on this post because I love the packaging. I think it’s beautiful.
And of course, this post won’t be complete without a reference to beer:
This came out a couple weeks ago, Furano Vintage. I remember seeing this one last year in the fall but I never picked it up. I did this year. According to the can, this particular beer is made from the local hops grown in KamiFurano. This is Sapporo Classic, so this is only found and sold in Hokkaido. There’s the added urgency, though, on the top left hand corner of the can that said this beer has a limited amount. Holy smokes. That’s why I bought it because they’re quite rare.
Again, I drank it. It was good, but I still wouldn’t be able to tell you the subtle differences of why it was particularly unique because I don’t have the sensitive taste buds to distinguish unique tastes. I can’t tell you whether it was fruity, or bitter, or sour, or whatnot. But, I can tell you that it hit the spot right after a hard day of work.
Just a few gentei stuff.