5 Delicious Sweet Potato Treats to Buy at Japanese Convenience Stores this Autumn
As the strong blaze of the summer sun gradually subsides to usher in autumn, the storefronts of convenience stores begin to be lined with various sweets incorporating the flavors of seasonal ingredients. With that, here are some of the most recommended convenience store sweets that are made with sweet potato (“satsuma-imo” in Japanese), the representative taste of autumn in Japan.
Autumn and Sweet Potatoes in Japan
Autumn, when the hot and humid summer ends and the cooler and more pleasant days set in, is a season when food is so delicious that the Japanese people have actually come up with the terms “autumn of harvest” and “autumn of appetite”. It is the season of saury, mushrooms, grapes and many other ingredients. Out of all the ingredients that define autumn, though, it is the sweet potato that has long been loved by Japanese people as the representative taste of autumn. Sweet potato is not only sweet and delicious, it also quite nutritious as it is rich in vitamins and dietary fibers.
1. Hakko Butter Kaoru Kogane-iro Sweet Potato (7-Eleven)
Hakko Butter Kaoru Koganeiro Sweet Potato is sweet potato from Kyushu that has been carefully baked after adding egg yolk, and fermented butter and cream from Europe. It may look simple, but it actually has a rich taste that comes from the simple sweetness of the sweet potato, the fullness of the cream, and the aroma of the fermented butter. While it has a smooth texture, the residual bits of sweet potato accent the texture of this dessert. It is quite small in size, so it is also recommended for a light snack.
Price: 170 JPY (incl. tax)
2. Satsuma-imo to Kocha no Parfait (7-Eleven)
Satsuma-imo to Kocha no Parfait is a Japanese-style parfait that is characterized by the unusual combination of sweet potato and black tea. It is a luxurious four-layer parfait of black tea-flavored kuzumochi (mochi cake made from arrowroot flour), milk tea mousse, whipped cream and imoan (sweet potato paste), topped with diced sweet potato compote and shiratama (rice flour dumpling). In between the whipped cream and milk tea mousse, there is a hidden layer of dorayaki (a kind of confectionery that is made with two sweet pancakes sandwiching red bean paste) dough to serve as accent. If you buy this, you will get to enjoy various flavors and textures, from the sticky sweet potato paste up to the refreshing black tea kuzumochi, so this sweet is especially recommended to those who want to savor different flavors all at once.
Price: 300 JPY (incl. tax)
3. Anno-imo no Tart (FamilyMart)
Anno-imo no Tart is a sweet treat that is made from Anno-imo grown in Tanegashima that is known for its particularly high sugar content and sticky texture even when compared to many other sweet potato varieties in the country. It has a mild tart dough that is light on the sweetness and inside is a filling made of three layers: custard cream, Anno-imo jam, and Anno-imo paste. The paste that makes full use of the stickiness of Anno-imo is not too sweet, so you will be able to directly taste the innate sweetness of the sweet potato. It is already delicious when eaten as is, but if you lightly warm it in the toaster, it will become even more fragrant and delicious.
Price: 198 JPY (incl. tax)
4. Annoan Choux Crème (FamilyMart)
Annoan Choux Crème is a cream puff of purple choux puff pastry that is filled with custard cream made from Tanegashima Anno-imo paste. It boasts exquisite harmony of the sticky and chewy choux pastry and the rich Anno-imo custard cream, and a bite of this treat will flood your mouth with the flavors of sweet potato. It is a quite a filling confectionery that comes in a cute sweet potato-like appearance.
Price: 138 JPY (incl. tax)
5. Mitsu-imo Junsei Daifuku (Lawson)
Mitsu-imo Junsei Daifuku is a sweet that blends Japanese and Western confectionery styles, as it is made with soft, chewy Habutae mochi (a mochi sweet that is created by adding sugar and sugar syrup into steamed rice flour) that is filled with Anno-imo paste and whipped cream. The fusion between the rich Anno-imo paste that is made from roasted sweet potato and the whipped cream is truly perfect! There are also diced honey-sweet Mitsu-imo bits inside the sweet potato paste, providing accent to the taste and texture of this dessert. It is definitely a versatile sweet that will go well with coffee or tea.
Price: 150 JPY (incl. tax)
This article showcased sweets that are only available during autumn. If you happen to find sweets and snacks that use sweet potato, which is one of the favorite ingredients of Japanese people, in convenience stores, you should definitely get some.
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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