The beginning of March truly marks the advent of Spring, a fact that I was convinced of this morning when I woke up to a gorgeous blue Madrid sky.
In Japan, March 3rd also marks the celebration of Hinamatsuri, the country’s annual “Girl’s Day” or “Dolls Day”, in which – following ancient customs – straw dolls are set out to sea, supposedly taking any bad spirits along with them.
This celebration, which caps off a prior period during which families display their dolls on elaborately arrayed stands, is, of course, also celebrated with specific foods, including sake made with fermented rice; the sweet and colorful rhomboid-shaped hishimochi rice-cakes, and chirashizushi, which consists of assorted sushi layered over rice.
For Japanese people living in Spain, as with all over the world, it is getting easier and easier to find the ingredients you need to make these special dishes far from home, but just in case, Spain is certainly an easy place to find top quality rice in a pinch.
In fact, Spain has cultivated rice for thousands of years, ever since it was introduced by the Moors – and of course it is an ingredient in some of this country’s most famous dishes. Read more about this ever-so-Spanish product in Spanish Rice…and Shine! on Foods from Spain.
Just don’t try to float your doll down Madrid’s lazy Manzanares River, chances are pretty good that it won’t ever make it to the sea!