I found Tomizawa by chance while I was walking around in Machida on a rainy day, looking for some nice stores. What caught my attention in the first place were the sweet potato chips they had on display. As I love sweet potatoes and these were only ¥160, I decided to buy them and take a closer look into the shop.
What caught my attention then was that all the goods were labeled in English! How often have I been standing in a Japanese food store with ‘something’ in my hand, trying to figure out what it is and how to cook with it. At Tomizawa you’ll see the English name of the products written below the Japanese on the label. So if you don’t know what miso looks like or what kind of spices you’re holding in your hand, no worries!
Tomizawa offers a lot of different dried goods, such as mixed spices for rice, miso pastes, dried fish and other seafood and a lot more. Have you ever tried furikake? It’s a mixture of dried spices you can spread on cooked rice to give it some more flavor. Furikake is available in uncountable variations, containing sesame, fish flakes, seaweed, meat, egg, Japanese plums and whatnot. It’s a perfect addition to your meal if you’re cooking rice and don’t want to eat it plain. So Tomizawa would be the best place to start if you want to try some furikake.
In the back of the store, they also sell quite a lot of baking utensils as well as baking mixes and mixes for real Japanese desserts, such as “sweet red-bean soup with chestnuts” or “skewered rice dumplings with sweet soy sauce glaze.” If these aren’t nice souvenirs to bring back home!
Tomizawa has more than 2900 different products and every month they have events in the store. You can for example watch bakers baking bread. The events are announced on their webpage, but only in Japanese. However, the bread-baking show often takes place on Fridays, so if you happen to come to Machida on a Friday around 11 a.m., go to Tomizawa’s and maybe they have a show then. If not, you can still buy some furikake or sweet potato chips!