Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Mochi makin'

On Sunday afternoon we had an ai sankai (potluck) and made mochi. Mochi is a gooey paste made from smashed rice usually around the new year. Wonder how the rice gets smashed? With some big hammers, that's how! As you can see in the above picture, there is a big wooden bowl type thing that a lot of rice is poured into, and two people take turns whacking the stuffing out of it with the big hammers as shown. I thought it was hard work, but then again I was also put to shame by Kaminaga-san, pictured on the right below. She is 88 years old and is much more genki (healthy, feisty, active) than I'll probably ever be! You should have seen her go at that mochi... look out, folks!

After we made the mochi the women worked their magic in the kitchen (where they belong, right?) and made several dishes out of it for us to eat with the potluck.

I was glad to be able to participate in this Japanese tradition!

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