Sunday, March 27, 2011

New Discovery...Summer = Kakigōri

26th June, 2010 - L-kun discovered a new treat... the slushy. Actually, the ice shaver dated from when T-chan was a little girl, and it still worked perfectly. As they say - they don't make things like this anymore. It's such as simple design, and yet characteristically cute.  Just add ice and turn the handle... and out pops beautifully shaved ice; called kakigōri (かき氷).

Just add some handy syrup (Calpis syrup is lovely for this, and comes in a variety of flavours). Calpis is also the name of a popular drink in Japan - which is always a source of giggles amongst newly arrived foreigners for it's phonetic similarity to a certain bovine waste by-product. For the record, it tastes very nice, and it's always nice when you tell friends back home that you downed a whole bottle of calpis. Those crazy Japanese.

Shaved ice, kakigōri, is an age-old symbol of summer in Japan... and I have to say that L-kun wasn't the only one to enjoy. This is a great idea - and I don't know why in the west we seem to be obsessed with overly processed goods (ok I don't know how processed calpis syrup is) when with a little bit of effort you can make delicious desserts that are perfect for a Japanese hot summer. We actually brought one of these back with us to Adelaide - but are still looking for a local syrup substitute (although condensed milk is an easy alternative). Yumm-o!

A last comment - Sapporo is renowned for it's cold winters... but over the last few years, the summers (which are generally quite mild) have been heating up. 2010 proved to be a particularly hot Sapporo summer. Also surprisingly humid. However, as I hadn't arrived there yet (remember these are all from T-chan), I was still a little dis-believing that it could be that bad.

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