Do you know the interesting history of White Day? Just a fun bit of information to share this cold, tax month. Did you know that White Day began in 1978 in Japan, was started by a Marshmallow company, and has now spread to South Korea, Taiwan, and China? Read below for more interesting details. Get ready White Day (ホワイトデー Howaito Dē) is Thursday, March 14!
In Japan, Valentine’s Day is celebrated by women who present chocolate gifts (either store-bought or handmade) to express their love or appreciation. There are two types of chocolate presents given depending on the recipient: honmei-choco for men who are actually loved, or giri-choco for men who are appreciated (colleagues, bosses, etc.). Men tend to appreciate handmade chocolate that shows the giver actually took the time to make the chocolate. The average Japanese woman will spend approximately 3,500 yen on chocolate presents on Valentines Day.
White Day, is the reverse of Valentines day when men who received on Valentines Day reciprocate giving presents to the female givers. The most popular gifts on White Day are white chocolate, lingerie, marshmallows, jewelry and cookies (not necessarily in that order). Men are expected to give gifts valued three-times the value of the chocolate they received on Valentines Day.
White Day was created in 1978 by Japan National Confectionery Industry Association in an effort to promote the “paying back” of women who gave men chocolate on Valentine’s Day. However, the idea of White Day actually started the year prior (1977) when a Fukuoka-based confectionery company, Ishimuramanseido, sold marshmallows to men on March 14, calling it Marshmallow Day (マシュマロデーMashumaro Dē). The Ishimuramanseido Company has a very detailed website in Japanese that explains more details http://www.ishimura.co.jp/. An interesting tid-bit is that this company started making marshmallows in the Meiji Period due to left over egg-whites from making Keiran Somen (egg yolk somen). Interesting how somen noodles led to marshmallows that led to White Day.
We do not celebrate White Day in our house, but definitely going to whip up a batch of these chocolate cupcakes with marshmallows, and chocolate covered marshmallows just in the spirit! Happy White Day!
Chocolate Marshmallow Cupcakes – Great photos to show how to make them. However, I will make from scratch not boxed mix.
Chocolate covered marshmallows – Thinking these would be great with some crushed cookie crumbs or nuts!
If you`re new to baking visit Cuoco – Tokyo Baking Enthusiasts Dream Shop. They have 3 locations in Tokyo and carry everything you need from baking kits, mixes, equipment and a chocolate cellar. Many items are labeled in English as well! Happy Baking!
Living in or visiting Japan with Kids? Here are our favorite holidays and celebrations you should know about in Japan!
January – Coming of Age Day – Celebration of Adulthood for people becoming 18-20.
February – Setsubun – Devil Day
March – Girls Day and White Day
May – Boys Day or Kids Day
July – Tanabata
August – Obon
October – Sports Day
October/November – 7-5-3
December –New Years Celebration
Why White Day? – March 14th