Jumbo Mochi is a kind of rice cake and a traditional snack in Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan. I really want foreign travelers to get taste of the delicious snack when they come to Kagoshima! The rice cake is stuck with 2 bamboo sticks and seasoned with sweet soy source. I recommend many foreign friends to try it. Usually, Western friends doesn’t like it, but many oriental friends loves it. Maybe western people are not used to eating sticky rice cake.
History of Jumbo Mochi
In the past, Japanese Samurai used to holding 2 swords around their waists.
Jumbo Mochi imitates Japanese Samurai and that is why 2 bamboo sticks are stuck in the rice cake. Because of its name “Jumbo Mochi”, many people tend to 0imagine that the rice cake must be pretty big, but it is misunderstanding. The real size of Jumbo Mochi is bite-size (about 3 – 4 cm).
Jumbo means “2 swords” in Kagoshima dialects. The original pronunciation is said to derive from Chinese. According the the Chinese (Mandarine) pronunciation, the Chinese character 両棒 reads “Liang Bang”. The pronunciation has changed after Kagoshima imported the word from China.
Taste of Jumbo Mochi
The Jumbo Mochi is seasoned with sweet soy source. Sometimes Miso (fermentated soy beans paste) or sugar were used instead of soy source.
My wife often buy it as souvenirs for her friends. It is very popular among girls (and me). Personally I recommend you to have it with Japanese green tea!
It is very VERY delicious!
There are several Jumbo Mochi shops in Kagoshima City. Some of them are located at Kagoshima Chuo Station and Senganen Park. If you come to a branch shop of Hirataya at Dolphin Port at Kagoshima City, you can see the cooking scene of Jumbo Mochi.
Rice cakes are being roasted and look very delicious!
Two bamboo sticks are being stuck into rice cakes at very high speed!
Video of Cooking Jumbo Mochi
We asked shop staff to take video of their cooking Jumbo Mochi. I am very lucky!
Their cooking speed is very quick and looks as if it is a magic!
Good as Souvenir
Jumbo Mochi is a very popular souvenir of Kagoshima. But personally I like eating it just after it is cooked. ！
There are 12 pieces of Jumbo Mochi in one pack (500 yen). The price is reasonable. It is also good to get a taste of it as a snack during your trip in Kagoshima.
Access to Hirataya Shop
There is one branch of Hirataya Shops at the 1st floor of Dolphin Port at Kagoshima City.
Get off tram at Izuro station and walk about 10 minutes. 🙂