Have you ever strolled down the streets of Japan and glanced over at the food stall vendors, wondering what those cute, small fish-shaped pastries were? Look no further, this article is all about those delicious looking treats! Those Japanese cakes are called "taiyaki" which translates directly to "baked sea bream". "Yaki" means grilled, cooked or baked, as you may know from the ever-so-famous Japanese street food, "takoyaki" or baked octopus in the shape of a ball.
At this small but extremely popular and busy stall named "Oyatsumura" (おやつ村) in Otesuji, a popular shopping plaza situated in Fushimi, Kyoto, you will be able to enjoy this tasty Japanese snack called taiyaki. Taiyaki at this store comes in two classic Japanese flavors - a creamy custard and an azuki or red bean filling. The custard one is a true delight for those with a sweet tooth. The slight salty and bitter bite of the taiyaki dough is paired perfectly with the smoothness of the custard cream. The custard cream is not overwhelmingly sweet, and its rich flavor is further diminished slightly by the crispy edges of the outer shell. The flavoring is a perfect balance of sweet and slightly salty! The taiyaki with the azuki bean filling definitely has more texture, as the beans are mashed and not puréed. The bean filling is also a great complement to the less flavored outer crust of the taiyaki.
These little snacks are perfect for snackers of all ages, and they especially make great pick-me-up treats or celebratory treats for children! After all, who wouldn't find the small fish design to be cute? And even better so, the appealing exterior is barely a match for the mouth-watering filling of custard or azuki bean in the center of the treat. The Japanese cake is usually served while warm, so the filling dances in your mouth happily, matching the happiness you will feel with each bite! By the stall, there are a few benches so that you can enjoy your taiyaki fresh, while the filling is still piping hot. Just make sure careful not to burn your tongue when you are trying to take multiple bites of the delicious treat at once and immediately!
The store also serves takoyaki, so you if you're looking for a savory treat to pair with your taiyaki, you will be able to have both. Kakigori, or Japanese shaved ice, is also a popular treat sold at the stall during the summer.
Also, be sure to take a look around the other local Fushimi stores in Otesuji if you have some time. If you're lucky and have some money to spend, you might even be able to end up with an entire new outfit, a new set of porcelain, or even a great selection of matcha flavored sweets!