“Kobe” always calls to mind images of juicy beef, but did you know that you can also go fruit picking in Kobe? On Sunday 11th February, the PR Ambassadors took a trip to Kita Ward’s Ozo-cho, around 30 minutes’ drive north of Sannomiya, to try their hand at picking strawberries on the final tour of 2017-2018.
You can do it too- you just need to call and make a reservation. They are popular, so it is recommended to call plenty in advance to check availability. (Details valid for 2018) You can find full details of all farms and their availability in Japanese here.
Ohya Farm- Map
How to get there: by car, take the Rokko Kita toll road and get off at Ozo interchange. Take the number 73 road, west of Kobe Sanda Premium Outlets
By public transport, take the Kobe Dentetsu line to Okaba station, and get a bus to Kobe Fruit and Flower Park. Walk for 15 minutes from Aeon (it is recommended to use the map above)
Pre-open: until Thursday 15th March, 30 minutes all you can eat. 1600 yen for adults (junior high school students and over), 1400 yen for elementary school children, 1200 yen for over 3s, under 3s free*
Full open: Saturday 17th March until 6th May, 45 minutes. 1500 yen for adults (junior high school students and over), 1300 yen for elementary school children, 1100 yen for over 3s, under 3s free*
Post open: 7th May until mid-June, 45 minutes. 1400 yen for adults (junior high school students and over), 1200 yen for elementary school children, 1000 yen for over 3s, under 3s free*
One under 3 free per adult. Any additional child will incur a 500 yen entry fee
To reserve- phone (+81)078-954-0660 or (+81)090-6243-9078 between 7pm and 9pm.
After strawberry picking, the PR Ambassadors popped to Farm Circus at the nearby Fruit and Flower Park to see local Kobe produce, soak their feet in the Kin-no-yu hot spring footbath, and have a spot of lunch.
Finally, they took some strawberries to Ikuta Bunka Kaikan, a few minutes’ walk north of Motomachi station, and a pro patissier showed them how to make an adorable dessert, just in time for Valentine’s Day. Kobe is famous for its delicious desserts, and is also home to Morozoff, the first company to promote giving Valentine’s chocolates in Japan. You can read more about Kobe and Valentine’s Day here.
Here is the recipe:
Strawberry tart recipe
Makes 3 tarts
To make the almond cream:
Granulated sugar- 50g
Almond powder- 50g
To make the ganache:
Milk chocolate- 240g
Fresh cream- 100g
Honey or mizuame (starch syrup)- 30g
You will also need:
3 small ready-made heart-shaped sweet tart bases, roughly 9cm x 9cm in size
A piping bag (optional)
3 or 4 strawberries for topping
1) About 1 hour before baking, take the butter and egg out of the fridge.
2) Preheat the oven to 180℃.
3) Beat the butter in a mixing bowl until it is creamy.
4) Add the sugar and beat.
5) Beat the egg in a separate bowl, and add in one third at a time, mixing together as you go.
6) Combine the flour and almond powder, then add to the mixture until completely mixed.
7) Put the mixture into a piping bag, and pipe into the tart bases. Alternatively, spoon in the mixture. Make sure to leave around 1cm at the top.
8) Cook in the oven for roughly 20 minutes, or until the mixture is golden brown. While cooking, prepare the ganache:
1) Break up the chocolate into small pieces
2) Put the cream and honey or mizuame into a saucepan and heat until almost boiling
3) Add the cream mixture to the chocolate little by little
4) Add the butter and mix
(If you would like to add alcohol, add it at the end)
When both the tart and ganache are ready, add the ganache to the top of the tart.
*If the almond tart rises too much, you may wish to cut off the top to make room for the ganache.
Top with Kobe strawberries such as Beni Hoppe, which are red all the way through, making a great looking topping.
If you give it a try, share your pictures with us!
Check out out the PR Ambassadors’ posts below!