Thursday, January 14, 2010
Lotte Maple Custard Cake
Based on the choices I make for review, one might assume that Japan has little or no equivalent to Hostess cakes or Little Debbie. While it is certainly the case that there aren't nearly as many preserved cake options in Japan as there are in the U.S., there are often boxes of individually wrapped cakes with cream centers and various styles of icing on offer.
The reason I rarely review them (with a few exceptions including the Morinaga Kyorochan milk cake and Borden condensed milk cakes) is that I don't want to buy a box of six of them and find out I don't like them. Most of them cost around 270 yen ($2.97) and the cakes are small and fatty. Since I review so much junk, I decided awhile ago not to buy any of those big boxes of cakes and that I'd only review them if I could get them as individual portions. Enter this orphaned Lotte Maple Custard cake which I found at AM/PM for 60 yen (66 cents).
The cake smells like maple and has a distinctive cake smell which you encounter with all Japanese cakes of this type. The cake itself tastes like margarine and has a slightly oily texture and leaves a film on your fingers. I'll note that any type of cake like this which is not covered with icing or coating is like this in Japan. It's oddly dry and oily at the same time.
The filling is nicely sweet and has both a maple and caramel flavor. There isn't much of the custard filling and it can't really be tasted as much more than a sweet fatty feeling on the tongue. The maple notes are much more powerful than any custard notes.
This is not a bad cake really. I split it with my husband so that I wouldn't be eating all 116 calories by myself. Both of us thought it was pretty good, but also that we wouldn't buy it again because the cake itself just wasn't doing much for us. Note that this cake is a limited edition for winter. If you're interested in it despite my less than glowing endorsement, you'll have to get it before the cherry blossoms start blooming.