Most 倫eople in Japan display Kagami-mochi in their houses, companies or stores. Generally, Kagami-mochi is two round mochi which are about twenty centimeters across, and the smaller one is piled on the larger one. Often a small orange is put on the top. In former times, people thought a god inhabited Kagami-mochi. Also, its white color symbolizes God乫s purity. This is why Kagami-mochi is thought suitable for celebrating a new year.丂丂丂
This is a food which we eat during the New Year Holidays. Generally , Zoni乫s soup is has a taste of soy sauce, and the basic ingredients are toasted mochi , boiled chicken, kamaboko (steamed fish paste), and some vegetables. But the way to cook zoni is different from areas to areas.
On March 3 (the Girl乫s Festival Day), this is displayed on shelves of dolls, or on Buddist altar. Hishi-mochi is a few piled mochi which are dyed two, three, or five colors each.
This is a kind of mochi which is steamed or boiled, and wrapped with leaves of chigaya , ashi (reed), makomo or sasa. Chimaki means 乬wrapped with chigaya leaves.乭 At first it was Chinese custome to eat chimaki in order to grieve and prevent misfortunes. Now in Japan, this is eaten on May 5 (the Boy乫s Festival Day), hoping that children will be in good shape that year.丂丂丂
This is a white, round mochi seasoned by sugar and has sweet bean paste inside. Kashiwamochi custom began about the late 17th century. At first this was made in order to prevent misfortunes. Now we have this on May 5 (the Boy乫s Festival Day), and celebrate the growth of children.丂丂丂丂丂丂
When people build new houses, they throw down many small red or white pieces of mochi from up on the ridgepoles of the houses under construction. This custom is called Mochi-nage. Their neighbors catch or pick up those mochi. These days, other things like sweets or coins are thrown down in some cases. People pray for safety and happiness through this custom.
(The picture was taken by Koichi Iga)丂丂
This custom is a way to celebrate the first birthday of a baby. Parents have their baby carry a large mochi on his or her back and walk a little. It seems very difficult for the baby to do that, and sometimes he cries. Tradition says that babies can grow up strongly through this event.