Japanese Sweets: How to Make Yatsuhashi (八つ橋)

??? Homemade Yatsuhashi: close up

八つ橋 Homemade Yatsuhashi: Cinnamon-kinako flavor (featured image)

Yatsuhashi (八つ橋) – when I think of souvenir from Kyoto, it’s the first thing that comes to my mind. I remembered I ate a lot of yatsuhashi samples during my first visit in Kyoto (Actually, every time I visit Kyoto…). From the classic matcha to strawberry flavor, you can find many variations. I particularly like the black sesame seeds flavor yatsuhashi. As I said before, I would like to try to make more Japanese sweets this year. So this time, I tried making yatsuhashi. Surprisingly, it only requires few ingredients and it’s easy to make. Let’s get ready and here’s how to make your very own yatsuhashi!

Ingredients

For dough:
– 100 grams of non-glutinous rice flour (same flour to make dango)
– 50 grams (or less) of sugar
– 130 ml of lukewarm water

For coating:
– 20 grams of kinako (roasted whole soybean powder)
– 5 grams of sugar
– cinnamon (as much as you like)

For filling:
– red bean paste

八つ橋 Homemade Yatsuhashi: simple ingredients

Directions

  1. Mix the ingredients for dough and coating in separate bowls.
  2. Add water to dough mixture and mix well.
  3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrapper and microwave for 2 minutes in 600 watts.
  4. Take it out and mix using a spatula.
  5. Microwave it once again for 1 minute and 40 seconds in the same watts.
  6. Again take it out and mix until it gets glossy.
  7. Lay down a plastic wrapper on the table and spread some coating mixture.
  8. Transfer the dough on top of the plastic wrapper and spread some coating mixture on top of it.
  9. Spread the dough thinly and evenly using a rolling pin. As much as possible, shape it into a square.
  10. Then, cut it into a desired size of square shape.
  11. Get a small amount of red bean paste and place in the middle of the square dough. Don’t put to much red bean paste otherwise it will be difficult to fold it. Now, fold it to make a triangle shape.
  12. Seal the sides by pressing lightly and we’re done!

Aside from the usual red bean paste, you can also use different fillings. For example, strawberry jam, chocolate, sesame seeds paste or maybe peanut butter? Hm, not sure if that would go well with cinnamon and kinako though.

Overall, it was easy to make. Maybe it took me time in cutting out the dough because of the desire to make a perfect squares. I still can’t believe I was able to make this one. The outcome isn’t that bad, don’t you think? Next time, I’ll try to make it with my favorite black sesame seed filling.

??? Homemade Yatsuhashi: Cinnamon-kinako and choco flavors
Cinnamon-kinako and cocoa flavor yatsuhashi. Yes, I made choco version by just coating it with cocoa powder.

 

Oh by the way, don’t waste those offcuts. Me, I just rolled it. I like it as it is even without any filling. Actually, you can even find no-filling yatsuhashi sheets at supermarkets.

??? Homemade Yatsuhashi: Offcuts, no waste

What’s your favorite yatsuhashi flavor? or Kyoto sweets? Have you tried making any Japanese sweets? Share with me your experience. Thanks for reading!


One of The Three Scenic Views in Japan: Amanohashidate

amanohashidate_view

Hello world. It’s Mr. Wada on duty.

You may have figured that Japanese like catches like “Top Three…” as I mentioned in the previous post (The Three Well-known Onsens).

One of the Three Best Onsens in Japan: Arima Onsen, Hyogo

This time I will share one of “The Three Scenic Views” in Japan (hehe), which is Amanohashidate (天橋立).

By the way, other two are Matsushima in Miyagi Prefecture, and Miyajima in Hiroshima Prefecture which I’ve featured before.

Affordable Camping in Miyajima

About Amanohashidate

It is said that it is a sandbar/sand bank built by earthquake like thousands years ago, etc… Well, who knows. It does look quite unique and interesting indeed.

amanohashidate_view

 

It is located in Northern Kyoto, but it’s about 2-3 hours drive away from central Kyoto. Very far right?

 

Amanohashidate Tour!

It may take a half day. We shall start the tour at the Amanohashidate JR Station. A cool wood sign!

amanohashidate_station

Amanohashidate View Land

Walk down about 5 minutes to the lift to go up the mountain.

Amanohashidate_View_Land

Already looks great though…

Amanohashidate_View_Land_lift

Here we are. It does look quite something, doesn’t it? (or perhaps it may be hard to tell in the photo). Plus the weather is perfect!

Amanohashidate_View_Land

Matanozoki (股のぞき) is one thing about Amanohashidate. Take a look at it through your legs (upside-down) like in the photo below. It looks like a dragon rising up the sky….

Amanohashidate_View_Land

How does it look like?…

Amanohashidate_View_Land

Round trip: 850 yen for adults (450 yen for children)

Chionji Temple

Going down back towards the port and you’ll pass this temple on the way.

Chionji_Temple

See something hanging on the trees?

Chionji_Temple

Looks like people write wishes down and hang them. Interesting.

Chionji_Temple

Amanohashidate Sightseeing Boat

Now let’s move to the port and get on the boat (ferry). It’ll take you to the other side in 10 minutes or so.

Amanohashidate_Sightseeing_Boat

Let’s see how Amanohashidate looks like from the other side. Watch out for birds hunting for your food.

Amanohashidate_Sightseeing_Boat

One way: 530 yen (270 yen) / Round trip: 960 yen (480 yen)

Motoise Kono Shrine

As you get to the other side, this huge Torii (gate) waits. This is a path to Motoise Kono Shrine which was build in B.C. 507. That’s totally beyond my imagination….

Motoise_Kono_Shrine

Motoise_Kono_Shrine

Kasamatsu Park

After walking through the shrine, you will see the cable car station. Yes, we are going up again.

Kasamatsu_Park

Amazing view from the lift.

Kasamatsu_Park

Comparison of how it used to look like in the old days. Interesting.

Kasamatsu_Park

Once again. Take a look at Amanohashidate through your legs! See if it looks different from this side.

Kasamatsu_Park

One way: 330 yen (170 yen) / Round trip: 660 yen (330 yen)

Walk Through

Alright, at last  we are going back to the other side, though we will walk through it. It is about 3.6 km long. It takes about 40-50 minutes.

amanohashidate_road

It’s full of pinewoods. Watch out!

amanohashidate_road

Speechless.

amanohashidate_road

Let’s call it a day.

Lastly

How do you find it? It’s a little hard to access compare to other sightseeing places but I guarantee it is worth a visit while in Japan. There are buses from central Kyoto. Check out below if you are interested.

Reference
Miyazu Amanohashidate Tourist Guide
 (for access)
Amanohashidate Tourism Association  (general info)

See you around!

You might be also interested in these
3 Must-Go Autumn Leaf Spots in Kyoto
Taste Kyoto Wine at Amanohashidate Winery
Accommodation in Kyoto: Kyomachiya Ryokan Sakura Honganji



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