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Jun 14, 2001 01:16 AM

japanese bakery

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any recommendations on japanese bakeries?

thanx beforehand.

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    Michele Cindy

    There's a Japanese bakery, I think it is called Panna, on Styvensant/ E. 9th St. next to Around the Clock. I'm not a fan of that type of pastry, so I can't say whether or not it's good. It's popular is all I can say.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Michele Cindy

      The thing about Japanese bakeries is that they generally make French pastries. This is as true in Tokyo as it is here, in my limited experience. Anyway, it sort of begs the question--if you want French pastries, why specify a Japanese bakery?

      Panya's an exception in that it goes a little farther afield, making a doughnut stuffed with red bean filling, and some other interesting choices. I've always been happy what I've had there--the coffee is good, and they usually have these tiny little pumpkin cupcakes (no frosting, just confectioner's sugar on top) which are delicious.

      Another choice not too far away is The Adore (pronounced in French with accent marks I can't replicate in ascii) on 13th between University and Fifth. All French here, but also all good, and made in what appears to little more than a toaster oven.

      Anyone have a good source for mochi, the Japanese glutinous rice cakes? The place up by Rockefeller center is very good, but not particularly convenient for me. Unfortunately, this stuff degrades from sublime to just pretty good really fast, so it has to be eaten very fresh.

      1. re: Ben Appen
        Aditya Pradja

        Try Panya at East Village, their Banana Chocolate croisant is the really good, I've had better in Asia, but this is just as closed as you can get in NYC.
        The milk bread is also good as well as the spicy crocquete.

        Another one is at Yaohan (They actually changed their name now) at EdgeWater, New Jersey. A large selection of Bakery.

        There's a small Japanese grocery at Lexington between Third and Second Avenue at 59th St that sells some Japanese bakery. Check it out.

        If you happen to be around Wall Street area, the small Japanese restaurant below 5 WTC, Mechanko-Tei, also sells some bakery, but these are actually Chinese bakery from Elmhurst, Queens. Don't buy them there.

        1. re: Ben Appen

          You're correct that the japanese have a knack for french style pastries, but there are many items that are uniquely japanese, like many of the AN-pastries (with sweet azuki bean paste) that you mention -- can't go very long without an AN-PAN -- curry donuts, yakisoba sandwiches, green tea cake, among other things. Don't forget about the thick-sliced Japanese white bread. I'm sure Panya bakes their own, but as for the other places mentioned along this thread, I've noticed that there's a central bakery called PARISIENNE that seems to supply all the japanese baked goods throughout the area. I usually get mine at Yagura market on 41st/Madison, which carries a large line of goods from them. Also noticed them at Mitsuwa (formerly Yaohan) in NJ, and at Katagiri on 59th/2nd Ave, and Sunrise Mart on 9th Street/3rd Ave.

          As for the mochi question, are you refering to the sweet-filled mochi (which are called daifuku) -- which I believe you are referring to -- or are you refering to the rice cake that are used in stews and soups? In either case, you'll find what you need at Mitsuwa in Edgewater NJ. If you get to Mitsuwa, go to the OBAN-YAKI stand. These are the sweet bean filled pancakes.

          1. re: Eric Eto

            Thanks for the tip on Mitsuwa. I'll check it out. I actually didn't know that the Japanese used the glutinous rice cakes in savory cooking at all--I had only found that in Chinese dishes.

            Any restaurants in NYC that serve it?


            1. re: Ben Appen

              Mochi can be a staple item in many japanese kitchens. Besides using it in soups and stews, it's pretty typical to simply grill it and flavor it with soy sauce to eat as a snack. I normally associate mochi with winter, since it is very traditional to make mochi around the new year, and it is very integral to a traditional new year brunch with a stew called OZONI. I found a link that describes some things about mochi. I saw a post a while back about Menchanko-tei as the poster asked what the "goopy white thing" was, followed by an "yech". It is pretty bland, and many aren't accustomed to the texture. Besides that, I'm not sure where else to find mochi in savory items. You can also find mochi in the sweet azuki bean soup called OSHIRUKO; if you see that on a menu, try it. (Refering to another thread, if you've seen the movie Tampopo, this is what the old man was eating when he choked on a piece of mochi).

              Glutinous rice (MOCHIKO) is also used frequently in japanese home cooking. I believe a rice and bean dish called OSEKIHAN uses glutinous rice. (I might be mistaken on this though.) It's very similar to the peas and rice dish you find in jamaican/creole cooking. Also of interest is something called OHAGI, which is glutinous rice balls, with a covering of a thick azuki bean paste, or else covered with KINAKO, which is a sweetened soy flour. I believe there are also korean versions of these.