Japanese traditional sweets, known as wagashi, have long been associated with good fortune and gift giving, and Traditional Sweets Day has been observed for more than a thousand years. Today, wagashi are still an important part of the Japanese tea ceremony, and the hundreds of varieties of confections are also a popular treat.
Making suisen manjuu (水仙まんじゅう) at Iseya, a traditional Japanese confectionery shop in Obama, Fukui Prefecture. Photo by Nevin Thompson.
For example, dorayaki, a sort of pancake filled with sweet red bean paste, is still very much a popular snack.