Mochitsuki is a traditional Japanese event, which normally takes place on New Year’s Day. Steamed mochi rice is placed in a large usu bowl and is then pounded with a large wooden hammer called a kine. Mochi means ‘to hold’ and is thought to hold luck for the new year.
There are normally at least 2 people involved – one person will hit the mochi rice repeatedly with a wooden mallet, while the other turns the rice to make sure it is evenly pounded. This continues until the rice forms mochi dough, which is then hand-rolled into mochi and then sometimes filled with sweet adzuki red bean paste, sprinkled with soy bean flour, or dipped in soy sauce.
You can also get involved with Sake Kagami Biraki, a traditional Japanese ceremony where a sake barrel is broken open with wooden mallets to mark the start of a significant event – in this case, the beginning of a new year.
No need to book, just turn up at Ichiba Japan Centre Westfield and enjoy some fresh mochi for free!Organisers may cancel events, alter schedules, or change admission requirements without notice. Always check official sites before heading to an event.