One of the greatest worries when going to Japan is deciding on the right souvenirs for our friends and families. Making the purchases that best represent the region you are travelling to is the way to go. Not only will your gifts be meaningful, but your decisions may earn you your social points. Here is a list of 8 interesting souvenirs from Shikoku.
1. Oniuma Sudachi Pepper from Tokushima Prefecture
If you’re one who likes condiments to go with your food, Oniuma Sudachi Pepper might be for you. Sudachi is a type of citrus fruit. This delicious paste is made of green chillies and Sudachi, so the extreme spiciness will have a hint of refreshing citrus in it. It is said that this paste is so tasty that even ogres love it, hence the name Oni (ogre)- uma (delicious). Sudachi is a local specialty, making it a must-buy for anyone going to the region. From udon to tempura to sashimi, this sauce fits so many local delicacies well that it is indeed the “godly-level spice”!
2. Kawara Senbei from Kagawa Prefecture
Speaking of interesting souvenirs, Kawara Senbei will definitely be one of the top of the list! The sweet cracker is created from an almost 100 years old recipe. The shape of the crackers is modelled after the tiles of Takamatsu Castle, hence earning it the name Kawara Senbei (literally translating to ‘tile cracker’). Coming in various sizes, this sweet cracker will be a perfect gift for anyone craving for cookies or biscuits with a creative twist.
3. Age Pippi from Kagawa Prefecture
When in Shikoku, nobody misses out on udon. Sure, you’ve tried different sorts of soup-based udon, or maybe even stir-fried versions, but have you tried the local deep-fried udon of Kagawa prefecture? Age Pippi is the name to a deep-fried version of the sanukiudon, also a local delicacy. Age pippi is great for a light snack, especially with beer. There are different flavours, including savoury and sweet. Light, delicious and cheap, Age Pippi should definitely be one of your top choices for an interesting souvenir!
4. Yamashitaoiri honpo by Kagawa Prefecture
A form of traditional sweet in the Kagawa prefecture, it was mainly used as a wedding gift, though it is gaining popularity as a souvenir. It is brightly coloured and sweet, melting as soon as it pops into your mouth, making it a pretty fancy and delicious gift. You can even use it as decorations on your dessert, enhancing the aesthetic aspect of your creation.
5. Hatada Onkuri Tart from Ehime Prefecture
How often do you see a tart with a huge chestnut in the middle? If you haven’t been to Japan often, maybe rarely. The Onkuri Tart is a traditional Japanese snack which is made up of a soft, fluffy sponge cake lined with Yuzu kneaded sweet bean paste, with a chestnut. Definitely a pretty unique snack.
6. Umajimura Yuzu Kosho from Kochi Prefecture
Another interesting condiment that hails from the Kochi Prefecture. Yuzu Kosho is a citrus condiment made by mixing the peel of the yuzu citrus fruit, chilli pepper and salt. Since Kochi is the number one producer of yuzu in Japan, and Umajimura is famous for yuzu, that simply makes Umajimura Yuzu Kosho the best citrus condiment in Japan! Umajimura yuzu are grown naturally using almost no agrochemicals and this yuzu kosho has no artificial additives or colourings so you can enjoy the original taste of the ingredients.
7. Naruto Uzuimo from Tokushima Prefecture
Naruto Uzuimo is a Japanese sweet made from Naruto kintoki sweet potatoes which have been marinated in honey and dried. Naruto kintoki is hailed as the queen of sweet potatoes, cultivated in the mineral-rich soil in the salty sea breeze of the Naruto Strait. That just makes it souvenir worthy.
8. Imabari Towels from Ehime Prefecture
When you mention towels in Japan, it must be of the Imabari brand. Yes, towels. Imabari City is the largest domestic towel manufacturer, which is no surprise due to the quality of their towels. It is famous for retaining their original softness even without fabric softener as they have excellent water absorbency. A nice change from the usual souvenirs of snacks.
Ending the trip on a perfect note
Shikoku is certainly a region that offers much more than food and beautiful scenery. So here’s to hoping that your trip ends with the perfect gift that sums up your beautiful memories and the culture of the various Shikoku prefectures. I mean, what’s a better way to “wrap up” a trip, besides a perfect souvenir, right?