Mom and Dad (aka Baba and Jiji じじばば) were here from Japan to visit their granddaughters for a few days. My sister also has a baby girl born 6 weeks before my baby, so Jijibaba now have a total of two granddaughters in Australia and two in Hawaii.
I’ve come to expect Mom to arrive with something homemade and delicious each time. Sometimes it’s a batch of her original recipe miso, or from their farm, young soybeans or fresh pesto sauce. This time nestled in ice packs between layers of clothing in her suitcase, was a box of handmade creamy soft chocolates known as “nama choco” in Japan.
“Nama” means raw or fresh, and nama chocolate is usually made by mixing chocolate with fresh cream, similar to ganache. It’s characterized by a soft consistency even when refrigerated. It can be easily sliced with a knife and eaten with a fork and melts away in the mouth. Because It’s more perishable than regular chocolate, it should always be refrigerated. I like to take it out of the fridge for a few minutes to soften it up before popping them in my mouth. If you’re like me and like to dig out the ganache filling from truffles, you’ll love nama chocolate!
Perhaps Japan’s most famous brand of nama chocolate is Royce from Sapporo, and they can be purchased in most major airports in Japan as well as at their first US store in NYC.
Mom says “it’s super easy to make, just melt 2 parts chocolate with 1 part cream. That’s it!”
2 parts chocolate
1 part fresh cream
Heat chocolate and cream until melted together. Once it’s mixed, pour into a pan lined with plastic wrap or parchment paper. Let harden in the refrigerator. Once hardened, cut into bite sized squares and dust with cocoa powder all around. Keep refrigerated.