Setsubun is the day before spring begins in Japan and is celebrated annually on February 3rd. It’s a time to cleanse the evil away from the previous year, done through a ritual called mamemaki or “bean throwing” where people throw soybeans. The night of Setsubun is also where people eat ehomaki, known as “good fortune sushi.” It is said that by eating one of these thick, uncut sushi rolls, bad omens will be driven off and you will live a year in good health.
In this article, we will introduce to you a range of different ehomaki that are being sold in 2018.
MINISTOP Convenience Store
For 2018, MINISTOP are serving up their regular “Koufuku Ehomaki” (Happiness Ehomaki), packed with good ingredients.
The Koufuku Ehomaki is plump with a carefully selected bounty of 7 ingredients that includes thick dark sleeper with shiitake, soft whitespotted conger, dried strips of calabash, and more. But that’s not all – there is a whopping line-up of 9 ehomaki to be enjoyed at MINISTOP. As well as the Koufuku Ehomaki, you can get your fingers on one containing fresh seafood (“Umi no Kougu Ehomaki”), one where you can taste the charcoal cooking (“Sumibi Yakigyu Yakiniku Ehomaki”), one containing rich sauce and soft pork fillet cutlet, and more.
ATOM Corporation, who manage izakaya and family restaurants, are to sell limited quantities of ehomaki for Setsubun.
The ehomaki use ‘nori’ (seaweed) from the Ariake Sea in Kyūshū that has been blessed in Hakusangu in Aichi Prefecture for sound health, safety of one’s family and business prosperity. Each and every ehomaki is prepared and rolled individually and with the utmost care and attention.
This year they will add to their “Premium Ehomaki” line-up and introduce ehomaki made with eel from Aichi Prefecture, with grilled blackthroat seaperch from Yamaguchi Prefecture, and with snow crab from Tottori Prefecture
All 400 “AEON” and “AEON Style” stores in Honshu and Shikoku, as well as on their online shop, are to sell 19 different ehomaki.
The line-up includes thickly rolled ehomaki from popular Michelin 3-star restaurant “Sushi Yoshitake” that featured in Tokyo’s 2017 Michelin Guide, seafood ehomaki filled with fish praised by fishermen around Japan via “Pride Fish,” and more.
Daimaru (Tokyo Branch)
The ehomaki available at the Tokyo branch of Daimaru will increase to 150 this year – up 10 from last year – with plenty of variety.
This year, Daimaru will also introduce nikuman (steamed buns), bread and more for Setsubun. So that the food event can be enjoyed a little longer, “Flying Ehomaki” will also be sold beforehand.
Sanda Hotel have opened pre-orders for their winter-themed “Sanda Shunpanro Ehomaki.”
For Setsubun, the Japanese restaurant “Sanda Shunpanro” will sell luxurious good-luck sushi made with koshihikari, a type of rice, and ehomaki made with 7 ingredients. Be quick though, as they are only selling 10 sets of sushi and 50 ehomaki!
InterContinental Yokohama Grand Hotel
The hotel’s pastry shop has created the “Eho Roll,” a confectionery wrapped with cocoa flavoured grape and stuffed with large strawberries.
The “Eho Roll” was first announced in 2010 and ever since has proven popular every year. The soft sponge contains mouth-watering fresh cream and is packed with big, juicy strawberries. The cocoa grape wrapping makes it look just like a seaweed wrapped maki. The blissful fresh cream and sweet and sour fresh strawberries make a perfect match.
Did you like this list? Get your hands on your own good-fortune ehomaki, face south-southeast and eat your way into a healthy year.
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