Japan never ceases to be the country of making something taste exactly like something it shouldn’t. In the land where you can get kimchi-flavored soft drinks and spaghetti-flavored ice candy, it would seem food companies are really just drunk with power when it comes to what they can and will make stuff taste like.

And now we have “the perfect snack cake for any meat-lover,” Momotan Aged Meat Flavored snacks. It’s in the form of a typical Japanese confection called manju with a cake-like outer coating and sweet been paste filling. However, these Momotan manju are heavily seasoned to make you swear you were eating a morsel of month-old meat instead!

Of course you could age your own beef by keeping in a just the right conditions to prevent spoilage and waiting 20 to 30 days, or you could just pick up a Momotan from various souvenir shops in Okayama anytime for 540 yen (US$4.40) for a four-pack.

According to the box, Momotan are made by magical little peach elves employed to make all the manju sold by National Depart Corporation Limited. In the case of the Aged Meat Flavor, they added beef extract, yakiniku sauce, chili pepper, and the Korean fermented hot pepper paste gochujang.

Here, the Momotan elves explain how the process works:

“Oh meat meaty meat oh meat meat
From the heavens deliciousness came down
Lay down the meat making it delectable
Oh meat meaty-meat oh meat meat
Sizzle sizzle, crackle crackle, the scorching sounds

National Depart Corp. Ltd. goes on to admit that elves aren’t all that bright and that the Momotan Aged Meat Flavor snack cakes are actually developed with a “three-step meat system.” The first step is to create an impactful meaty flavor that will hit the instant it enters the mouth. The second stage involves simulating that savory amino acid taste known as umami as the manju is being chewed.

Finally, a good Momotan Aged Meat Flavor manju should release an aftertaste of just having had a fine cut of aged beef as it heads down the gullet. Then and only then, would it be a product of their standards.

So if you’d like to take part in the sensory confusion, you may have to set aside some vacation time. As we mentioned earlier, only souvenir shops mostly found near Okayama Station will carry this convoluted confection. So go to Okayama for the aged meat flavored cakes, but stay for the ice cream-shaped sushi.

Source: PR Times, National Depart via Narinari.com (Japanese)