Posts Tagged 'Sakura'

Sakura Sweets 2018

Indeed it’s the end of May…but I’d really rather not wait till the next spring to come around again before posting all these things I ate.

Since it’s been a while and all how’s everyone doing? Before moving to Japan I always thought the May sickness was a total myth but it’s turned out to be pretty real, I kid you not. I can’t even remember what I did in April because all sense of time disappeared along with the sakura. But jpegs are forever, so I’m still left with all these pictures of sweets I ate (and maybe that weight I gained from them).

It was all just very pink. So much pink.

Once upon a time this year I actually had time to go to festivals and chow down endless sticks of mochi. They’re still my favourite, because they roasted right there in front of you and they’re all soft and chewy with the occasional roasted crisp.

This ice cream shop in Hiroo had a secret spring menu, so here’s a visually pleasing soft serve with the daintiest sprinkling of sakura powder and flowers.

The star of the season was definitely this one donut from Siretoco. Some sweets are just born for Instagram greatness

More pink mochi! I got this from 7-11, who persevered till the very end and kept these on the shelves well after cherry blossom season was over.

And this was my piteous attempt to be decorative. I tried hard to be creative and make a sort of hanami scenery on my toast, but the sakura marshmallows turned out a lot fatter than I’d thought (definitely not like the picture on the package) and it all just became a little blobby. But effort should not be wasted, so here it is

See you next week (maybe?!)


Sakura in Tokyo, 2018

It’s that time of the year again…or should I say it WAS that time of the year again. The sakura bloomed for all of five minutes and then were all blown away before I fully realised they were all there.

But this is my third spring in Japan and my reflexes are now trained precisely for this, so in one weekend I managed to get some shots of the sakura and go around a festival or two

This was taken on film at Koganei where family after family came to have picnics under the cherry blossoms. Some brought their kids, some brought their pooches, some just brought themselves to enjoy the early bloom.

The parks this time of the year are perfect for people-watching. It gets pretty wild in certain spots (usually wherever the alcohol is) but plenty of people are also just sitting around in the middle of the hubbub doing their own thing. I’m usually just slinking in and out trying to take pictures.

I will never stop being fascinated by sakura, but at some point I did realise I’m probably just taking the same pictures year after year. This year I tried to get more shots of people under the trees, and that was a fun diversion of attention.

Babies! Lots of cute babies!

And toddlers out on their field tripI especially liked this group of kids because there was this one boy that just kept escaping the group to climb over the railing. He had absolutely no patience for sakura appreciation and I loved it.

I also came across this very appropriately pink post box outside Komagome Station and fell in love for the five minutes I spent taking pictures of it.

Tokyo Food Diary

Sakura trees are losing the pink and sprouting the green—the season’s crossed over the threshold of spring and said goodbye to those photogenic flowers for another year.

Here’re the last of my sakura food snaps—if I wasn’t taking pictures of the flowers I was walking around Tokyo looking for everything pink and limited edition, like this cupcake I found in a bakery cafe at Nishi-Ogikubo. It’s amazing how much difference one sakura leaf makes to a plain cupcake. Really though, it was salty and sweet and an unforgettable ten minutes spent on a dessert.

Something homemade for a change! Except the pasta. When you walk into a store and see a packet of pastel pink sakura-shaped pasta, there’s no question about it—it sails straight into your basket and then you litter it all over your bento later because it’s just so cute.

A rare choice of drink: Pricey, hyped and taking over my Instagram explore feed, but if there’s anything that can make me go to Starbucks it’s a domed pie crust over a frappe. Creativity right there! The American Cherry Pie Frappuccino came out last week in Japan, and it’s already become a star. I liked the drink okay enough, but the real satisfaction for me was in breaking up that crust and scooping up with the drink.

On to a tale of more humble beverage. I went to the supermarket and saw all these boxes of soy milk, so I swiped them off the shelf and finished them in two days. It’s easy to become a serial soy milk drinker when they come in packaging and flavours as fabulous as the Kikkoman range. I mean…mango soy milk? It was calling my name!

Getting some egg action with the most beautifully constructed quiche. I don’t actually love egg’s benedict—I’m not usually a fan of gooey food that runs all over the plate and leaves a mess, until it comes protected in a buttery quiche crust. This was at Quiche Yorozuika in Omotesando! They just don’t do anything but make really good quiche.

All filled up and ready for the new week!

Sakura in Tokyo 2017

The cherry blossoms are out to play again! Unlike me, because it’s the start of the new school semester. But I’m still seeing sakura everywhere in the streets and loving it.

Last year I saw them for the first time and went all out going for hanami seven days a week, but this year there’s less time to be crazy so I’ve been content with just walking under all those pink trees. And maybe a picnic or two.

Of course my camera is still being stuffed with a massive load of sakura pictures. Everything in the memory card’s been pink for the past few days.

I went to Ueno Park again and had my fill at the food stalls. Everything was up and festive and I got a stick of dango just like last year. Except this time it was pink! Sakura dango, a stick of the softest mochi I’ve ever had.

It got paraded around for a bit too, while I was trying to get the best photo position with the sakura trees in the background.

It’s so fun seeing everyone out in the streets looking excited about seeing the flowers. There’re so many people walking around appreciating the sakura that it just makes you feel better about starting the new school year.

And if you see a bunch of old grandpas with their heavy duty tripods and full-frame DSLRs lined up, you know it’s a good photo spot.

Sakura at sunset is also beautiful and unexpectedly photogenic, as I found out at Rikugien the other day.

Cute things to make with pink soba

Hello! Recently I’ve been busy travelling and going home; I wanted to blog about my short trip to Taiwan so I’ll do that when I’m back in Japan. For now here’s a post about what I made with pink soba.

Pink Alpaca Soba

I got this way back in spring when I went to Kawaguchiko and everything was sakura-flavoured (hence the pink), but this pack of soba noodles only expired in September which is why I waited so long to use themdiet nekoI couldn’t bear to use them and held off until final exams came around and I was trapped at home with little else to eat. And so this pink alpaca was first born (and eaten on the spot).

Pink Cat Soba

I thought it’d be a waste if I had pink noodles and just used them as noodles, so I spent a long time googling inspiration for pink animals or anything remotely decorative. (I tried so hard.) Eventually I just ended up with a remake of my walletneko

They don’t have to be pink, so if you ever have a pack of soba noodles lying around go ahead and get creative with themkirakira

Sakura Snacks in Japan

Hello friends! I’m sorry I missed last week’s post…two good friends from Singapore are visiting Tokyo and staying with me, so I’ve been doing the whole Tour Guide by Day, Student by Night thing for  week (I earn my playtime during the night when I study).

Sakura Japan

This taiyaki in front of a cherry blossom sums me up well. Gin no An was having a special sakura flavour for the spring season, and I ate it twicegrinThe cherry blossoms in Tokyo are mostly gone but I’ll still eat anything sakura I see.

Sakura Japan Taiyaki

Look at all that sakura an paste inside. With mochi! They stuffed it in along with the leaf so it’s sweet and just a little bit salty at the same time. (Also I have a lot of appreciation for fallen sakura petals and their bokeh potential)

Sakura Japan Senbei

A simpler snack that was passed around during one of the many hanamis. I don’t usually eat senbei or crackers, but it had sugary sakura all over it and got me into the picnic mood (i.e. I couldn’t stop snacking on them).

Sakura Japan Pancakes

This might be the most elaborate one out of all the sakura food I’ve tried. I already love pancakes, but cover them with sakura cream and chocolate hearts and I’ll gladly queue half an hour for it. It was a fat stack of three pancakes and I had it together with my friend because it was so fillingdiet neko

Sakura Japan Pancakes

There was mochi and sakura an paste wedged inside!

Sakura Japan Cake

Ginza Cozy Corner also had a series of sakura cakes, but I only ever got to try this shortcake. It was really pretty and surprisingly not expensive for a cake like thislove girlThis one had strawberry and mochi inside too.

Sakura Japan Ice Cream

A lot of parks were selling this sakura soft serve ice cream. I later found out the mystery green bits were little specks of shiozuke (preserved cherry blossoms), which makes an interesting decoration for an otherwise normal ice cream cone.

Sakura Japan

My friend and I also made our own sakura lattesmileWe just added whipped cream on top and bedazzled it with iced gems and pink chocolate swirls but it looked pretty cute and we agreed we’d pay for a drink like this at Starbucks (though we do say so ourselves).

And so I think I’m done with my sakura obsession for now. I’m satisfied and ready to move on with the rest of the yearsakura

Hanami under the Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo

Sakura in Japan

April has begun! Which means school is starting and spring break is coming to an end…but on the bright side the cherry blossoms are now in full bloom all over Tokyo. There is sakura filling up the country and I’ve been on a hanami high going for picnics under the trees.

Sakura in Japan

When it’s your first time in your life seeing the full bloom in Japan you get too excited and go out of your way to be as festive as possible. My diet for the past week has been entirely pink because of all the cherry blossom-flavoured food I’ve been gettingsakura

Sakura in Japan

A lot of people go for hanami (literally ‘flower viewing’) and that’s when the parks and rivers are packed because they’re prime spots for picnics with their mass of sakura trees. I’ve been going to some place or another every single day of the week and might have already done hanami seven timeshurhur(A public apology to all my friends on social media who have to endure my incessant posts of sakura pictures)

Sakura in Japan

But it really is beautiful! I’ve never seen so much pink and white on trees and it makes me feel amazed that I’m finally seeing something straight out of my desktop wallpaperssakuraThe flowers are actually the colour of cotton candy and it’s pretty fascinating.

Sakura Mochi in Japan

Sakura season’s got me craving all the hanami food like mochi and bentoeatingSome of the cherry blossom places have festivals with food stalls selling snacks and picnic food, so it’s easy to pick up something to eat. Like this sakura mochisakura mochiI’d never eaten one before so I asked my Japanese friend if I could eat the leaf too (she didn’t know and kindly Googled it for me), and it seems like it’s left to your discretion. So I ate it and it just tasted salty. But the mochi was sweet so I liked it! (Of course)

Sakura in Japan - Dango

This looks familiar haha. Throwback to 2015 when I arrived in Tokyo a little late for the flowers and went on a desperate hunt around the city for trees that weren’t already naked of their sakuranekoSanshoku dango is one of my favourites; they come in three colours that represent the pink sakura in spring, snow in winter and green grass in summer (literally just found that out while typing and Googling). Sometimes they come with anko inside too!

Sakura in Japan - Roll Cake

I got this matcha roll cake with strawberry cream in the middle from Family Mart! So simple but quintessentially Japan in springtime. Just look at all that beautiful green and pink.

Sakura in Japan

One of the food stalls at Ueno Park was selling these panda-shaped buns (because, you know, it’s Ueno). I’ll buy anything as long as it’s food and has the face of an animal.

Sakura in Japan

Everyone in Japan seems to be enjoying this very pink season and it makes me happy just to see people stop in the streets to look at the sakura or kindergarten kids playing under the trees.

Sakura in Japan

Even old couples go on walks and watch the scenery together.

Sakura in Japan

The flowers are just as pretty close up too; I’ve been picking up some of the flowers that fall on the ground just to send to my friends back home. I’m looking forward to when they’ve all fallen and I can just roll around in themhappy

Night Sakura in Japan

The night sakura is amazing too, when everything is illuminated and the trees just start to glow in the dark with lanterns all around. This was at the Meguro River, which is one of the most popular hanami spots in Tokyo and very densely populated all the time.

Sakura in Japan

The cherry blossoms were the best way to end the spring break and start the new year aheadgirl loveNow I’d say it’s the nicest time of year to come to Japan, because it just shows the best of Japan.

Now allow me to share something quick if I maygirl

My friend Manatsu and I made a video! It’s basically us eating lots of different sakura sweets, and we even have a new YouTube channel so from now on we’ll be posting videos about our life in Japan. New season, new startsakuraCheck it out if you’re curious about what cherry blossom tastes like!

▷ . Cheryl

A university student in Tokyo who takes pictures and puts them on the Internet

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