Thursday, April 19, 2018

Yaokin Fluffy Softmallow and Dora-Choco

The next step down the path of reviewing food from my ZenPop box (the "Peach Festa") is paved with things for children. Both of these dagashi (kid's snacks) are made by a company that most people know best for their savory corn snack sticks.  I have to admit that I don't recall every having seen the pastel marshmallow barber's pole that is the "softmallow," but I have a hazy memory of the little tiny dorayaki. Since I left Japan six years ago, I imagine I'm going to continue to have hazy memories.

The softmallow looks like something someone would try to recreate on Instagram or Pinterest, and then someone else would try to recreate it and it could be an epic Pinterest fail. It's adorable enough to be snipped into little pieces and be used as unicorn cow pies as part of a cake decoration.

So, the marshmallow has definitely won the remains of my twelve-year-old self's heart in terms of looks, but what about taste? It is indeed very fresh and soft, but soft like a pillow that gives and then rebounds. The marshmallow is lightly sweet and has no other flavoring added, but it is a nice flavor. I'm pleased to say that most of the Japanese marshmallow's that I had in Japan had a strange aftertaste that is absent in this one. The only difference between this and an American marshmallow is that it's less sweet and just a hair more "rubbery," but not in a way which is off-putting.

The dorayaki has an amazing smell that reminds me of freshly-baked cake. The chocolate filling is so similar in appearance to red bean paste that I forgot it was chocolate until I put it in my mouth. The cake is surprisingly moist for a shelf-stable product and does have a more "cake-like" taste than regular dorayaki which tends to be like a pancake which is a bit dry.

In terms of the filling, it's not super flavorful on the front end (the cake dominates), but hits on the back end when you get a little burst of chocolate that falls somewhere between dark and milk. The filling is nicely fatty and adds to the texture to some extent. This was shockingly good for a kid's snack and reminded me of a less cloying version of a Hostess snack cake.




Shirar said...

I can't believe you've been back for a year now and I had no idea! I used to adore your blog back in the days. It wasn't just the snacks themselves (intriguing as they were)- your own personal commentary on current japanese culture through western eyes was fascinating, as well as your personal memories (for some odd reason, I distinctly remmber your story about a wealthy, vegetarian friend, who would go to McDonalds and order just the bun, with cheese and condiments. Why this particular story? I have no idea. It just stuck to me).
I admired your efforts to keep this blog alive despite no longer living in Japan, and was sad when you decided to move on. I felt that there were no other blogs which offered the combination of both facts and personal experiences the way your blog did. And about Japan, no less!
So, imagine my delight when I have searched your blog for snacks references and recommendations now that I'm finally traveling in Japan (yay!) and found out that you are back on an almost regular basid (double yay!)
You have been missed, and I do hope that you'll keep this wonderful blog alive.
Thank you for sharing your life with us, in such a unique manner of writing.

Orchid64 said...

Thank you for checking back and for your very kind comment!

I hope you have an amazing time when you're in Japan. Please leave a comment and let me know how your trip went!

Saki said...

I did't know that there is such a cute marshmallow in Japan. These colorful design attracted me very much. I'd like you to explore much more dagashi and review them! I'm looking forward to reading your next post!!