Friday, July 01, 2005

Food at Wanuke-Sama

I went to a nearby shrine for a religious festival called “Wanuke-sama.” It is held on the last day of June every year in and around Kochi city (I guess??). For more information about this festival, click here.

For me, (and maybe for many of you, too) one of the biggest attractions of any festival is the food stalls. Of course, I took some photos to share!

Ika-yaki (Grilled Squid)
You can smell this even from a distance! The squid on the skewers were dipped in sweet and salty teriyaki-style sauce and grilled. Hmmmmm…!!!!

Wataame or Watagashi (Cotton Candy)
I almost never buy one these days, but I enjoy watching the cartoon characters on the wrapping bags.

An obachan (not me) pouring strawberry syrup over shaved ice
It was so hot and humid, so there was a long waiting line in front of this stall.

For those who know what okonomiyaki is, this is thin okonomiyaki wrapped around chopsticks. Toppings are sauce, mayonnaise, thin strips of nori (dried seaweed) and kinshi tamago (thin-sliced egg sheet). Yum!

Corn on the Cob
I bought one of these today. Some soy-sauce based sweet and salty sauce was brushed on the corn. It was so sweet and juicy. Great with a can of low-malt beer! :D

Well, hope I can live the rest of this year staying healthy and full of energy!


Anonymous said...


I second that nomination for a couple of beers with the ika-yaki (which looked a lot tastier than the packaged dry ika that I usually have with a beer) and the hashi-yaki. I've been to both Hiroshima and Kyoto and wondered as to what your opinion was on the debate over who has the better okonomiyaki? I must admit stupidity on my part. While in both cities I failed to try either ones' okonomiyaki which would probably answer my own question! 

Posted by kyle

Anonymous said...

well, i've never seen okonomiyaki on a stick before! i've been looking for a good okonomiyaki recipe, one that doesn't use eggs preferably (my mom says they're optional but then again she is the same one who did the bowl haircuts...) but everytime i make one it's soooo heavy! usually i precook my veggies and then pour them into the batter. batter is just flour and water. maybe some grated imo would help? any thoughts? you can't find a joint that makes a decent okonomiyaki in this city, much less any okonomiyaki! 

Posted by rae

Anonymous said...

Once again, I am thrilled to see the pictures. All the foods look amazing. The guy selling the corn is kind of cute!  

Posted by joanna

Anonymous said...

> kyle --- I’m the worst judge about that okonomiyaki issue, because some days I crave for Kansai-style and other days Hiroshima-style. When I feel like something rich and gooey, I love to indulge in the heavenly combination of sauce , mayonnaise and fluffy dough of Kansai style ones. When I feel like something lighter, I definitely go for Hiroshima-style. And I’m just happy that I live in the place where I can taste both : )

> rae --- I’m trying hard not to have a negative image of your mom because of the bowl haircuts… :D Anyway, if used only water and flour to make batter, I can imagine it’d be heavy and a bit rubbery, maybe? Grated yam and some baking powder might help, but unless eggs were prohibited for some reason like allergy problem, I think eggs are something you want to add. They not only make the dough fluffy but definitely improve the taste, IMO.

> joanna --- LOL That guy WAS cute. Boy, you’re so talented that you knew it by seeing his nose and lips only! :D 

Posted by obachan

Anonymous said...

Hey.. Obachan,
I can imagine how lovely the smell of the squid would have been. The baby picture is so cute.. :)
And the Hashi-maki looks so yummy.  

Posted by MrsT

Anonymous said...

Everything looks so good !!!!! Especially the ika and hashi maki....I never saw okonomiyaki on a stick before.. looks wonderful.. I could almost smell the food...Great photos... wish I were there to enjoy...

Posted by carlyn

Anonymous said...

> MrsT --- I thought the baby was so cute, too. She was looking at me like "What the heck are you doing?"

> carlyn --- Hashi-maki is relatively new here in Kochi. It tastes almost the same as okonomiyaki, but somehow, when prepared this way, looks more tempting, I think.  

Posted by obachan

Anonymous said...

I've never seen hashi-maki before- is it a Kochi thing?

And the kakigori lady is ladling syrup from those big jars- does that mean her syrup is homemade? I'd love to try it!

I'm going back to Canada for a month this summer, so I won't be able to go to any festivals this year. Your pictures are as close as I'll get!  

Posted by Amy

Anonymous said...

Hi Amy,
No, hashi-maki isn't a Kochi thing. I guess it came from Kansai...but not sure. The kakigori syrup is by no means homemade. I'm 100% sure.
So you're going back to Canada this summer? Have a good time over there! Meanwhile, I'll post bunch of matsuri photos this summer, so come and enjoy them anytime! :D 

Posted by obachan

Anonymous said...


As a child, I remember eating grilled squid at festivals in Japan. We have tried to recreate the recipe without success here. Would you be able to help with a recipe? I would love to surprise my mom with it when she comes to visit this summer.

Sally in Minneapolis

obachan said...

Hi Sally,
Sorry it took this long to respond to your comment. It took me a while to find recipes for the sauce… The problem was that this food is called differently in different places, and I wasn’t using the right word for googling… Anyway, according to the recipes I found, you just need to marinate cleaned squid in soy-mirin sauce ( same amount of soy sauce and mirin --- for example, 100 mL soy sauce and 100 mL mirin for 1 squid) for about an hour and grill. It’d be the best if you could char-broil it, but frying it in a frying pan or cast iron skillet with a little salad oil would be fine, too. Cover with a lid until it is done inside, then turn the heat to high to coat the squid with thickened sauce. A little amount of grated garlic and/or ginger can be added to the marinate sauce, if desired. I haven’t tried this myself, so I don’t know how it’d be like, but hope this gives you an idea to experiment on.