In America, we grow up eating M&Ms;, candy corn, and fake cigarettes made from sugar. In Japan, penny candy is called dagashi (DAH-gash-ee), and runs the taste gamut from creamy little pots of frostinglike material to a salty rectangle of dried squid — all adorably packaged! Some Japanese candies are widespread here (Pocky, the marriage of breadstick and chocolate, or Kasugai’s spectacular fruit gummies), but classic dagashi hasn’t been — until Shin Hatakeyama, the manager of the treasure trove called Sunrise Mart, brought a few crates back last week from Tokyo. This weekend (April 4–5), he’ll be having a dagashi festival in the mart. Children under 12 will get a token (a Japanese coin, tied with ribbon) that can be redeemed for five dagashi. (Sorry, adults have to pay.) The tiny crème brûlées are very tasty, as are the Bugle-like fried things. Yes, the staff at Sunrise will translate for you (there’s no English on the packaging), but where’s the fun in that?
Related: Japanese Candy [NYM]