With such a wide range of delicious and delectable (and, erm, shall we say unusualsnack foods available in Japan,  it’s a little hard to understand when people get whipped up into a frenzy over plainer options, such as toast and bread crusts fried with sugar. Now, twitter users in Japan are getting their tastebuds in a twist over the confusingly-named “English Toast”, a sweet snacklet that first became popular in Aomori prefecture and has now expanded into a whole range of conbini sandwiches. But what on earth is it?

The original “English Toast” first munched by Aomori residents is said to consist of two slices of plain old shoku pan white bread (so, not actually toast, then) which are covered in a thin layer of margarine (blegh!) then sprinkled with sugar (double blegh!) before being slapped together. To be honest, it sounds like the kind of thing my undiscerning eight-year-old child self might have whipped up when mum wouldn’t let me spend my pocket money on sweets and I was in the grip of major sugar withdrawal. However, I don’t really remember this being a “thing” in the UK and, as the origins of English Toast are shrouded in mystery, we’re going to have to assume it’s something the food manufacturers in Aomori made up out of thin air to appeal to people’s sweet tooths and love for foreign-style products.

▼ Just imagine the grainy, greasy mouthfeel in your mind when you look at this picture. Have you got it?

Here’s some of the variations on the original that are starting to appear on conbini shelves across Japan:

▼ ”English French Toast with custard”,  the Anglo-Franco treat for when dentures just can’t happen fast enough.

▼ Koshi-an red bean paste English An Toast, for when you want a little taste of Japan in your shoku pan.

▼ Pudding flavour English French Toast.

▼ Egg English French Toast and Melon Cream English Toast

▼ Ham and Egg English French Toast, Ham and Mayonnaise English French Toast and Egg French Toast (we can only pray that sugar is not involved in any way)

There seems to be some brand confusion here, but we think we’ve got it – bread with margarine and sugar and something sweet is English Toast. Bread with margarine and sugar and something sweet that’s fried in egg is English French Toast. Bread with margarine (hopefully no sugar) and something savory that’s fried in egg is also English French Toast. Phew, we’re glad that’s cleared up.

Source: Naver Matome
Images: Hirudoki.hungry.jp, Nikkan-spa