Monday, July 13, 2009

Konpeitou

These colorful star shaped small candies is called Konpeitou(kon-pay-toe). Konpeitou is usually 5 to 10 millimeters in diameter. Each piece is covered with tiny bulges, which occur in the cooking process. A word of konpeitou came from "confeito" in Portuguese. It's now one of the Japanese traditional and popular sugar candies which everyone knows. But as you see this word came from "confeito" in Portuguese, it was first brought to Japan by Portuguese merchants while Japan secluded herself from any other countries but Portugal and the Netherlands. Konpeitou was very rare sweets at first since we didn't know the technique to refine sugar and eventually konpeitou was a very precious sweet in those days and so they were often brought to the Imperial court people and the powerful landlords by Portuguese merchants or some Jesuit missionaries as the gifts before its making process was widely prevailed in the country. In fact the whole process of making tiny konpeitou requires time and delicate techniques. Nowadays there are many kinds of shops that makes konpeitou but there is only one long-standing shop in Kyoto that handmakes all kinds of tiny konpeitou and is a purveyors to the Imperial House of Japan.
Lucky me! because this store locates very close to the university where my daughter goes to in Kyoto. In fact she was home over this weekends to spend time with us. She brought the box of konpeitou especially arranged for Tanabata. Aren't they lovely! Too lovely to eat them.

8 comments:

Dionne said...

These are so cute! They look like a candy here we have called Nerds, but I don't think it's the same thing. I love all the colors!

Little Miss Tiara said...

Ooo... they are so cute and colorful! :D my friend who went Japanese last year bought me some of them to, I don't know where he bought it, though :D

Anya said...

Funny and colorful :)
Thanks for sharing !!!
Lovely shots you make ..

Dionne said...

Oh, i just noticed your new blog banner - how cute!

Jeany said...

Hi Mekkan, I think I know this candy, it looks very alike a candy we have here in Holland, very tasty, but full off sucker, ;))), but never wrapped up so nicely like yours, beautiful, you’re right, don’t eat it, :)
Big hug from jeany

katztales said...

Love the colours and the shapes but not keen on sugary sweets ; except for chocolate!

LENORENEVERMORE said...

Firstly, I adore your new banner...adorable! So are these tiny candies...tried them before, I find them not too sweet which is just great for me!

Pamela said...

Those look so yummy! I love the different colors and the packaging. :)