From May 15, diners at Yamagoya, the Japanese ramen pop up, housed upstairs from Shuang Shuang on Shaftesbury Avenue, will be able to enjoy a raindrop cake. However, making each cake is such a time consuming and laborious process for the kitchen, that there will only be 20 produced each day. And once they’re gone, they’re gone.
Fah Sundravorakul, co-founder of Yamagoya says ‘we’ve been painstakingly working on the cake for months, to get the balance of clarity and texture just right, and now we’ve cracked it, we can’t wait for London to try it out. The cake really challenges perceptions of what a dessert should look like, but it’s more than spectacle; in Japan people love eating something refreshing after their ramen, so we’re taking that heritage and modernising it in a playful way.’
So it’s a dessert to not only challenge your senses, but also act as a cooling antidote to the hot and spicy ramen noodles you’ve just slurped down, reflecting the Japanese custom of finished a meal with cool, sweet flavours.
What is a raindrop cake?
Raindrop cakes are a traditional Japanese dessert called mizu shingen mochi. They’re made by mixing water with a special agar powder and leaving it in the fridge to set it into a crystal clear jelly. Yamagoya’s version comes served with a sweet molasses syrup, know as kuromitsu, and roasted soybean flour for dipping known as kinako.
Yamagoya was founded in Fukuoka, Japan, in 1969 by Masatoshi Ogata. He spent years perfecting his recipes and marinades, and they’ve remained a closely guarded family secret for three generations.