Aomikan is a green tangerine that are available in Japan from around the end of August though September. There are simply tangerines that have been harvested a few weeks early. They are tart and tangy.


Wasabi is Japanese horseradish. It is most famous in form of a green paste used as condiment for Sashimi and Suschi. However, wasabi is also used for many other Japanese dishes.

The wasabi plant Wasabia japonica also incorrectly equated to Eutrema japonica, a member of the cruciferous family, is native to Japan and is traditionally found growing in or by cold mountain streams. The earliest cultivation of wasabi in Japan dates back to the 10th century. The grated ‘rhizome’ or above-ground root-like stem of this plant has a fiery hot flavor that quickly dissipates in the mouth, leaving a lingering sweet taste, with no burning sensation.


Natsumikan is a bitter Japanese citrus fruit in season during the summer months. Several wagashi confection stores in Kyoto are quite famous for their chilled natsumikan jellies, in which the jelly is usually inside the hollowed out whole natsumikan fruit peel. They are a bit expensive but are quite a dramatic presentation so are often given as gifts.


Kumquats or cumquats are a group of small fruit-bearing trees in the flowering plant family Rutaceae, either forming the genus Fortunella, or placed within Citrus sensu lato. The edible fruit closely resembles that of the orange (Citrus sinensis), but it is much smaller and ovular, being approximately the size and shape of an olive.

Akebi Fruit

9541 copyThe akebi is the purple fruit of a wild akebia vine that grows on Honshu and Kyushu. It feels soft to the touch. It’s shape is roughly that of what you’d get if you tried to smush an apple into a banana-shape but gave up about halfway. The part you want to eat is the sweet whitish inside, although that the purple skin and black seeds are also edible. For many Japanese, the appearance of the akebi fruit is a symbol that Autumn has finally arrived.