For Children’s Day in Japan, May 5, in the bakeries we found something a little surprising, some tree leaves that wrap around pastry. This is a traditional sweet called Kashiwamochi (柏饼).
The pastry is made of mochi, glutinous rice, and the interior is filled with anko (paste made with red bean). Wrapped with an oak leaf, in Japanese “kashiwa”, hence its name, which represents prosperity.
There is a traditional legend that the first time the Emperor Showa tasted this sweet, he ordered the cook not to do it again because he did not like the taste. The emperor made the mistake of eating the leaf, which is only for decoration.