Monday, February 8, 2010

Roasted Sweet Potato KitKat


It's no secret that I am not a great food photographer and I'm comfortable with this fact. I don't consider myself so much a purveyor of great pictures as much as a writer. The pictures are just here to make the blog a little more interesting to look at and to show people what things look like as a point of reference. That being said, despite their second-class citizen status, I spend as much or more time taking and processing pictures as I do writing the reviews.

One of the things that causes me a great deal of consternation is the lack of light in my apartment. I literally get no sunlight at all because of my apartment's position in the bottom, center part of our apartment building and because we are surrounded by taller buildings. I've seen all sorts of tutorials on how to take better food pictures and they all start with natural light and reflectors so that you don't get all sorts of glare off of the things you're taking shots of when the flash is used. At any rate, I shrug my shoulders and keep taking my mediocre shots.


Every once in awhile, there is a food that I try to take a shot of which just kicks my ass. That is, no matter how hard I try, my camera won't focus. Usually, this happens with light-colored foods like white chocolate candy or light-colored cookies. I'm talking about this because my ass got handed to me by this sweet potato KitKat. I took 12 shots during two separate picture-taking sessions and then gave up. This is why you don't get yet another shot of the insides of a KitKat that looks pretty much like any other KitKat. I'm sure you're all disappointed but will somehow manage to carry on with your days as if all were well and good. (If you're really desperate, you can look at the daigaku imo KitKat, which looks very similar except that the filling between the wafers on it is kind of grey and this one had a whiter filling.)

This KitKat has been around for months and months and I've avoided it because it's sold as part of a multi-pack which is includes 7 regular milk chocolate KitKats and 6 roasted sweet potato ones. What is more, it was usually sold for over 300 yen ($3.35). I just didn't want or need a lot of plain KitKats along for the ride and refused to buy it despite quite a strong desire to sample the sweet potato ones. Fortunately, these finally went on sale at Okashi no Machioka for 197 yen ($2.20) and that was cheap enough for me to cave in.

I should have caved earlier because I loved this KitKat. It smells of white chocolate and sweet potato, which is to say, quite sweet. It tastes very sweet as well and has just the right amount of sweet potato flavoring. This is a difficult balance in some cases. Too much tastes like rotting potato and too little makes it hard to detect the flavor at all. There's also a certain sense of "creaminess" to it. It's hard to pin down but it's both a flavor and a sense of texture, though the bar is pretty much your usual firm chocolate with crispy wafer bar.

Each bar is 69 calories, and I should be glad that these are too expensive to get just any time and that they are made less appealing because of the inclusion of regular bars. I'd be wanting to have these all of the time if I could just buy them as single bars any time. If you like real sweet potatoes, there's a decent chance you'll like these quite a lot.

This has been reviewed at many other blogs by people far less fussy than me, but the easiest one for me to find a review on: Jen's KitKat Blog.

11 comments:

Girl Japan: April Marie said...

Kicked your ass... haah RLMAO! Poof..gone. I almost sent you a package of these.... but it was regular, not the mini =)

I lurv sweet potato, especially around the winter months when nearly almost every street vendor, mall, supermarket is selling "Satsumaimo) I think its called Yakiimo, which is my favorite but only when it is just right, not too dry, soft and perfect.

I'd know I would love to try this flavor. Yakiimor was the first food I tried from a street vendo, my husband ran outside to get me one as the truck was going by, good memories.

prettyprettyyumyum said...

your shot looks great, it's always really annoying to take pics of those plastic multipack thingies, there is always a weird reflection somewhere but looks like you nailed it. in my kitkat photography experience i've found it much easier to 'shoot' the 4-finger cardboard boxes or just the minis by themselves!!! ^__^

Orchid64 said...

April Marie: Thanks for thinking of me. :-) Later this week, I've got a review of a sweet potato jelly which I think you'd enjoy.

pretty: Thanks so much for your kind words! I love your blog, btw. I've added you to my blogroll!

Genbu said...

It's hard for camera to focus on blurry pattern/color, you can try to focus on dark(contrast) parts of the packaging before shooting, it actually depends on your camera possibilities. Cheers! Yummy post, btw. ^_^v

ashleylaurent said...

I've never posted on here before, but I wanted to say that I enjoy your blog and I always appreciate your pictures! Keep up the good work!

Orchid64 said...

Hi, Genbu, and ashley, and thank you so much for your kind and supportive words! I appreciate both your readership and your taking the time to comment. :-)

Dollars to Yen said...

I agree with the other comments... your photos are great! With Kit Kats isn't it mostly the novelty anyway?

Orchid64 said...

Ah, thanks, Dollars to Yen. You're all so kind and supportive. It really does warm my heart.

I just got a snotty and nasty comment on one of my other blogs and was thinking that so many people are unnecessarily mean and treat people on the internet like the proverbial dog they kick after a bad day on the job...but then you lovely folks come along in greater abundance and show that there are plenty of very kind people out there.

Thanks so much!

Cybele said...

Like you I've avoided this one. I like Sweet Potatoes and chocolate but not together.

So I bought it, and then gave it away.

Now I've bought another one over the weekend after reading this. Might just eat it this time.

Orchid64 said...

Hi, Cybele, and thanks so much for taking the time to comment and read. You are the queen of candy blogging, after all. :-)

I hope you enjoy the sweet potato KitKat. Just be forewarned that it is very sweet. Sometimes that can be fine, but sometimes it's a bit much.

Ariane said...

I'm a fan of yaki imo and I bought those Kitkat last week and thought they were disgusting! Hahaha! They have a weird aftertaste...
But not as weird as the wasabi kitkats I got at Tokyu Hands...

Very interesting blog! ove it!