Murasaki Imo is 1 of the best Japanese Soft Cream

posted in: Food & Drink, Japan 2

Murasaki Imo – the best I have tried!

Murasaki Imo is the best I have tried! What is Murasaki Imo?

What is Murasaki Imo?

The Murasaki Imo is purple sweet potato soft cream. It is mellow with a gentle sweet taste and creamy, but not overly creamy.  It is not overbearingly sweet like most Japanese desserts.

All about Murasaki Imo
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Soft Cream is popular in Japan

Soft cream is described as silky and smooth. No matter where you go in Japan, you will find it. In English, we call it simply as “soft serve ice cream,” the soft ice-cream served on a wafer-cone which we hurriedly enjoy before it trickles down our fingers 😊 Yes, that’s the one I am talking about! I am sure it is available and popular in many countries but what makes the ones in Japan so special? Well, it is the flavours and its association with a particular region of Japan.

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A shop front advertises the soft cream as “silky ice cream” – a variety of unique flavours

Different flavours of soft cream

There are so many different flavours of soft cream in Japan. A lot of people would probably be familiar with the standard vanilla, chocolate or the green tea matcha flavours, but you would also find the unusual purple coloured ones, the fruity melon or the soy sauce flavoured ones! Yes, indeed – the soy sauce! These varieties, I am told, is related to a region which has their own speciality.

For example:

Kyoto –         Match green tea because of its association with Uji, producer of superior   quality matcha tea;

Furano –        Melon, a region famous for its fruits;

Kamakura –  Purple sweet potato

Tokyo –          Tofu & Amazake

Kyushu –       Yoghurt Ice

My mini-adventure with soft cream

The varieties of these soft cream caught my attention when I visited Kyoto, Japan. My mini adventure with the “soft cream” took place on a very hot afternoon after visiting Fushimi Inari in Kyoto and climbing (and down) of those 4000 or so bright orange Torii gates. I was drawn to this one shop front that had yuba ice cream and various different coloured ones. It had a long line of visitors waiting to be served…so figured the “soft cream” must be good? Correct? Well, I decided to join the queue and try it anyways.

I could have a combination of two flavours or a single flavour. Two scoops. All for 400 Yen. I definitely did not want to try the green tea flavour (had already tried before on many occasions in Kyoto), so I opted to try something different and exotic, a combination of  yuba soft cream and the Murasaki Imo, the purple sweet potato.

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The shop that sold interesting flavours of soft cream at the Omotesando St, Fushimi Inari

Yuba soft cream

Yuba soft cream is derived from soya. Yuba is a soy milk skin that is created on the surface when the soy milk is boiled. The yuba soft cream is flavourful and tastes like thick soy milk. It was tasty.

Murasaki Imo soft cream

The Murasaki Imo or the purple sweet potato soft cream was mellow with a gentle sweet taste and creamy, but not overly creamy.  It was not overbearingly sweet like most Japanese desserts. It did not have the strong flavour of the orange yams or the yellow sweet potato and it certainly was not bland. It does take a little time to settle on your palate, especially when you are working through the silky smooth yuba and a tad stronger but mild silky smooth root vegetable.

This is the one I tried! Murasaki Imo topped with Yuba soft cream!
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This is the one I tried! Murasaki Imo topped with Yuba soft cream! Absolutely delicious!

Conclusion

The combination was interesting and was indeed refreshing. An exotic flavour and tasty soya combined with some sweet mild flavour with a hint of potato. Murasaki Imo is definitely one of the best soft cream I have tasted. I would highly recommend that you try this exquisite flavour when you visit Japan. You will not be disappointed.

Happy travels!

Georgina

February 2020, Update

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All about Murasaki Imo 2
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A detailed guide for first time travellers to Japan to discover soft cream associated with various regions via @GGeorgina_mytimelessfootsteps/
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2 Responses

  1. Georgina
    |

    Thank you, Jay! It was definitely tasty and mild. Perfect for a sunny day.

  2. Jay Artale
    |

    I’m not a big ice cream eater as I’m not keen of creamy flavors, but I’d definitely try that Purple Sweet Potato one. Not only does it sound like it tastes delicious, it’s a visual feast for the eyes too.

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