03 November 2012

Bento! #136, Part 2: Kyuushuu kara no Omiyage (UPDATED)

I got a little extra something today. I got a piece of omiyage / お土産 / おみやげ / souvenir / gift from Kyushu (九州), the third largest island in Japan (after Honshu / 本州, where Tokyo, Osaka, and Kyoto are, and Hokkaido / 北海道産, the northernmost part of Japan), which was given to me by my colleague who was the one who received it from someone visiting him from Kyushu. :D

It's tasty and sweet. While omiyage might mean any kind of souvenir/gift, this is more specifically called okashi / お菓子 / sweets (such as candy, small cakes, sweet snacks that go well with coffee/tea, and so on). I forgot to take a picture of the actual food inside this packaging, though! And the box it came in with. That would have been interesting. Anyways, it's like a bread/bun, that is almost pancake-like, with a sweet filling inside, maybe made from beans. Yeah, it's not something that is traditionally Japanese -- remember, they never really had the concept of "bread" or "cake" like we know them before westerners first visited here, hence "bread" and "cake" only have katakana versions in Japanese: パン / pan and ケーキ / keeki. But they make these quality products almost everywhere around Japan, and put maybe 4 to 10 of them in really nice packaging -- artfully colored boxes usually -- and sell them for about 2,000 yen (about US$25?), and voila, they're really great as gifts. It's nice to receive them from Japanese; it might likewise be best to give some of similar quality from your hometown whenever you're meeting with a Japanese.

UPDATE: Here's a photo of the box it came in:

Thanks to Okada-san for this photo! And for sharing this
okashi no omiyage!