Many people know Zentsuji city, Kagawa prefecture as the area where Kobo Daishi Kukai was born. Every year there are many visitors to the symbol of the town, Zentsu-ji Temple, which is the grand head temple of the Shingon sect and the 75th temple of the Shikoku Pilgrimage.
And this is what pilgrims often buy on their way back from the temple!
The building in which it’s located was constructed in 1913, and is still used as it was when it was built.
When we visited, some pilgrims were there.
Katapan, the famous sweet seen in the picture, was conceived as a food for military personnel, and at the time of the shop’s establishment it was called “Heitai pan” (‘Soldier bread’).
Ingredients include wheat flour and sugar, which are kneaded together and stretched out, then cut, set up and baked. After drying, they are ready to eat.
The details of the manufacturing site are a secret, but katapan is made as a result of several time-consuming stages.
In short, their hardness is way beyond the level of crunchy rice crackers – they’re hard enough to make you feel that your teeth are breaking.
Those who like hard foods really should try them!
In addition to experiencing a level of hardness beyond your expectations, you may get addicted to their sugary sweetness and the fragrance of the wheat that spreads in the mouth!
Address: 3-4-11 Zentsuji.-cho, Zentsuji city, Kagawa prefecture
Business hours: 7:30-17:00. Saturdays, Sundays & national holidays 8:00-17:00
Setouchi Finder Photo-writer: Seitaro Miki
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