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Minazuki


NO.15
Minazuki
In Kyoto, minazuki is eaten on June 30, in preparation for the summer.
Sweet adzuki beans are placed on soft rice cake (uiro) to become minazuki. Among Kyoto's confectioneries, only minazuki comes in the shape of an isosceles triangle. In olden times, on June 1st by the old calendar, the imperial court ate ice brought down from ice-houses in the mountains of Kitayama and elsewhere. In those days, eating ice during warm weather must have been the epitome of culinary pleasures. It was also credited with preventing weight loss in summer. Minazuki takes the place of that ice, and is eaten on June 30 as part of summer purification rituals, to prepare the worshipper for the summer ahead. The uiro represents the ice, while the adzuki beans have powers to drive away evil. In modern times, though, the best of the old and the new is perhaps represented by kintoki (crushed ice topped with sweet beans).

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