Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Japan 2013 - Kyoto's Fabulous Nishiki Street Market

We had some free time in Kyoto and, with two couples from the tour, I returned to one of my favorite places in Kyoto, the Nishiki Street food market. This is one of the most interesting and attractive food markets in the world, with many of the best artisanal products available in Kyoto on display, including pickles of all kind; rice crackers; tofu and yuba (tofu skin);  fu (wheat gluten); dried fish; fresh meat, fish, poultry nad vegetables; tea sweets; spices and fresh roasted tea. Many stores offer free samples, which we downed with pleasure.

Before we hit the food stores, we stopped at Aritsugu, the famous knife and kitchen ware store that has been in business for more than 400 years, where one of our tour members bought two knives. New knives are sharpened before they are packed and, if the purchaser desires, engraved, as seen below.

Santoku being engraved at Aritsugu
That mission having been accomplished, we entered into the heart of the market. Here are some of the most photogenic displays we encountered.

Tea roaster
Rice crackers with soybeans, black beans and peanuts
Miso pickled eggplant
Baum küchen - layer cake made on a spit
Yuba and rice crackers
Gift package of fu
Pickled radishes
Nori (seaweed) concentrate
Dried baby fish
Young woman pounding mochi
And on and on . . .

Bobby Jay

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