Mochi-making festivities held Saturday at KIP

Mochi or rice cake making is a traditional Japanese New Year activity.

Koza International Plaza is the venue for Saturday’s New Year’s Mochitsuki Taikai, a traditional rice cake pounding.

The rice cakes, known as Mochi, are created by the literal pounding of the rice with mortar and pounder.  The mochi-pounding is sponsored by the Okinawa City Center Residents’ Association, and co-sponsored by the Okinawa City International Association.  The event takes place 10:30 a.m. ~ 1 p.m. in front of Koza International Plaza on Palmyra Street.  Participation is free.

Mochi making participants are encouraged to wear comfortable clothes “that you don’t mind getting dirty.  We advise you to bring an apron and bandanna if you want to cover your hair and clothes while making mochi.

Participants will be making mochi with a variety of flavors including sesame, soybean flour, chocolate, nori (seaweed) soy sauce, jam, kimchi and chili sauce.  There will also be kasa muchi, an Okinawan mochi in three colors: red sweet potato, yellow pumpkin, and white sugar.